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Water Heaters

Propane Tankless Water Heater

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that approximately 20 percent of a home's energy costs are spent heating hot water. There are four ways to cut your water heating bills: use less hot water, turn down the thermostat on your water heater, insulate your water heater, or buy a new more efficient model.

Water heaters basically come in two forms. Most are of the storage tank variety. These hold 40 or more gallons of water, and keep it heated at all times.

The other form is tankless. Propane tankless water heaters are increasingly becoming the chosen type of water heater. The main reason is they are much more efficient, because they only heat water as demanded, which means that during periods of inactivity they consume no propane and produce no emissions. Making them very efficient and environmentally-friendly.

Comparing a few water heating options:


Unit What Fuel type? What is it? How it works Pros Cons
Tank (Indirect-fired/zone) Oil or Propane A storage tank with coil pipes inside. Hot water from the boiler passes through the coil, which heats up the domestic water surrounding it.
  • Large volume of stand by water.
  • Tanks are durable.
  • Very efficient.
  • Only used in conjunction with a boiler.
Tankless (Coil) Oil or Propane A coil of pipes inside your heating boiler. Coil surrounded by hot boiler water. Water travels through coil gaining heat to be delivered to tap or faucet.
  • Inexpensive initial investment.
  • Must maintain boiler temperature year round.
  • Small to medium capacity.
  • Not very efficient.
  • Susceptible to water quality.
Tank (Direct Fired) Oil or Propane A storage tank with its own burner. The fuel is burned in a combustion chamber under the water storage tank and hot flue gases heat the water in the tank.
  • Large volume of stand by water.
  • Tanks are durable.
  • Higher service costs due to separate burner.
  • Medium life span.
Tankless (On demand system) Mostly Propane but systems are available for Oil Compact wall mounted unit containing a coil and a burner. Water enters unit and travels through coils that are heated by burner. Water then travels to the tap for use until the tap is closed at which point the heater shuts down.
  • Highly efficient
  • Take up much less space
  • Propane unit will produce fewer emissions.
  • Produces a large volume of hot water.
  • Can be more expensive initially.
  • Susceptible to water quality.

Dead River Company's energy experts can make recommendations to meet your home's water heating needs and reduce your energy expenses. Contact us today for more information and a free estimate.

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