Electric vs Gas Tankless Water Heater: Which Is Better?

When it comes to reliable hot water, tankless water heaters are the way to go. But what type should you choose – electric or gas? Gas and electric tankless water heaters have pros and cons that make them both viable options, so before making a decision it’s important to do your research.

This article will provide an in-depth comparison of gas vs. electric tankless water heaters, from initial price to installation obligations. Now let’s dive in and discover which type is the best choice for you!

Electric vs Gas Tankless Water Heater Which Is Better

When is Propane a Good Choice?

Propane tankless water heaters have the advantage of being energy efficient, so you can save money on your energy bills. Additionally, they require no electrical service and are typically applied in rural areas where natural gas service is not available.

When deciding between a tankless electric or propane model, you need to take into account the initial cost and energy efficiency of each one. Electric tankless models are often less expensive upfront but may have higher operating costs due to their lower energy efficiency rating.

On the other hand, propane models tend to have higher initial costs but lower operating costs because they are more energy efficient and can provide more hot water faster than electric models.

Propane also has a slightly higher flow rate than electric, meaning it can supply more hot water at once while still maintaining its efficiency rating. The heat exchanger in propane models also helps ensure that no cold water comes out when someone turns on the faucet — something that is not always possible with an electric unit.

If you do not have access to natural gas services and want an energy-efficient option with low operating costs, then a propane tankless water heater could be a good choice for your home.

When is Natural Gas a Good Choice?

Natural gas is particularly well suited for whole house systems due to its superior heating and flow capacity compared to electric models. This makes it ideal for larger households and those living in cold climates. When it comes to energy costs, natural gas is often more economical than electricity in many areas of the country.

Additionally, while upfront costs may be slightly higher than electric models, gas tankless water heaters can save you money in the long run with lower operating costs. Ultimately, when making an informed decision about your hot water heater needs, consider whether a natural gas model would be the best option for your family.

When is Electric a Good Choice?

Tankless electric water heaters may be a suitable option for certain households, particularly in warm climates and when the daily demand for hot water does not exceed 40 gallons. For two adult households in Arizona or Florida, an electric tankless water heater is the ideal option.

It can also be used to boost hot water service at remote locations, such as guest houses or pool houses. It is also suitable for boosting individual water sources in larger locations, like restaurants or grocery stores.

Furthermore, if you don’t have access to natural gas, electric tankless water heaters are your only option. They require less energy than traditional storage water heaters and have higher flow rates than gas models.

Gas vs. Electric Tankless Water Heaters

Gas tankless water heaters tend to have higher upfront costs but lower operating costs. They also provide more hot water at a faster rate than electric models and are great for larger households with high hot water demands.

On the other hand, electric water heaters are often more affordable up front and use less energy than gas models so they can save you money on your monthly energy bills. Plus they’re easy to install and require no venting making them ideal for smaller homes or apartments where space is a concern.

In short, there is no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to selecting a tankless water heater – what works for your neighbor may not be best for you! We recommend talking to an expert who can help you make the best choice based on your budget, hot water needs, and installation opportunities.

 Gas Water HeatersElectric Water Heaters
Purchase Cost$1,000-$1,200$500-$700
Investment for InstallationHighLow for Most Homes
Operating costs over long termLower than electric but projected to riseHigher but Stable
Flow Rate CapacityAt least 8 GPM+Up to 8 GPM in Warm Climate and 3.5 GPM in Cold Climate
Maintenance NeedsAnnualMinimal
Venting RequirementsNecessaryNone
Impact on EnvironmentRelies on Fossil FuelsDepends on Energy Source

1. Initial Price

Electric tankless water heaters are a great option when it comes to initial cost. You’ll be glad to know that electric tankless water heaters are generally less expensive than their gas counterparts. Not only is the unit itself cheaper, but the installation costs are lower as well.

Because they don’t require complex venting or a gas line, the installation process is much simpler and takes less time. This means you can save money on labor costs, and get your new system up and running faster. Overall, electric tankless water heaters are the more economical choice for initial cost, saving you both on the purchase of the unit and the cost of installation.

2. Installation

The installation of a tankless water heater is a major investment, and it’s important to make sure that it’s done correctly in order to get the best possible results. Hiring a qualified professional is the best way to ensure that your tankless system is installed properly and safely.

This may add an upfront cost, but this expense will be more than worth it when you’re enjoying hot water on demand for years to come.

3. Operating Costs

When it comes to operating costs, gas tankless water heaters are the most cost-effective option. Gas prices are lower than electricity in most areas, making them more affordable to operate on a daily basis. In some areas, however, the price of gas is much higher than electricity.

This means that an electric tankless water heater may be a better choice in these areas due to its lower operating costs. No matter which type of tankless water heater you choose, you can count on energy efficiency and minimal maintenance costs for both types of units.

4. Hot Water Needs

Hot water is a necessity in any household, and it’s important to choose the right type of water heater to meet your needs. Electric and gas tankless water heaters are two popular options, but which one is best for you?

Electric models are known for their energy efficiency, offering an easier installation process than gas-powered models. They also require lower energy costs over time, as they don’t use fuel or require extra electricity to keep running. The downside is that electric models may not be able to provide enough hot water for larger households with multiple bathrooms.

Gas tankless water heaters are ideal for colder regions because of their higher capacity output and flow rate. They can handle more gallons per minute than electric units, meaning they can provide plenty of hot water even in large households. On the downside, they require a separate electrical service line, and they tend to be more expensive up front due to installation costs.

5. Maintenance

When it comes to maintaining your water heater, it is important to understand the differences between gas tankless and electric water heaters. Gas tankless water heaters are typically more expensive upfront than electric models, but they can save you money in the long run due to their lower energy costs.

Electric water heaters require more maintenance than gas units, as they need to be regularly serviced and have their heating elements replaced every few years.

6. Warranty & Service Life

When it comes to selecting a water heater, one of the most important considerations is the warranty and service life. A tankless system, unlike conventional tank-style water heaters, can be repaired and have its parts replaced as needed.

This makes them last much longer than a traditional water heater – typically 20 years regardless if it’s gas or electric. That’s twice as long as the average lifespan of a conventional tank-style unit! Not only does this mean an extended period of hot showers for you and your family, but also a reduced need for repairs and replacements throughout the life of the system.

7. Homeowners Preference

When it comes to choosing a tankless water heater, homeowners have a tough decision to make. Should they go with the gas tankless water heater or the electric model? Both provide hot water, but there are many differences that need to be taken into consideration.

The initial cost for an electric model is often less than for a gas water heater, but electric units require more energy and can be more expensive in the long term due to higher energy costs. Gas models tend to have higher upfront costs, but usually offer better energy efficiency and lower energy costs.

Additionally, electric models tend to have lower flow rates and require colder water than gas models. Lastly, installation costs may vary depending on which type of heater you choose. So when deciding between an electric or gas tankless water heater, think about your budget and what features are important for you.

8. Fuel Source Options

When it comes to selecting a tankless water heater, you have two main fuel source options: gas and electric. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages which should be taken into account when making your decision.

Electric tankless water heaters are generally more energy efficient than gas models and require less upfront cost for installation. However, they tend to be pricier in terms of operating costs due to the amount of electricity required to heat the water.

On the other hand, gas tankless water heaters are typically cheaper to operate since natural gas is usually less expensive than electricity, but require more energy for heating hot water. Additionally, installing a gas model can be more costly due to the need for additional piping or venting.

9. Environmental Impact

When it comes to energy efficiency and environmental impact, electric and gas tankless water heaters are a great option. Both types of water heaters offer impressive energy savings when compared to conventional storage heaters, with electric units boasting an Energy Factor of up to 99% while gas models boast an Energy Factor of up to 96%.

Electric tankless water heaters have the added benefit of reducing greenhouse gas emissions as they do not require combustion, whereas gas models may contribute to overall emissions.

No matter which type you choose, both electric and gas tankless water heaters can help reduce your carbon footprint while saving you money in the long run.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to choosing between a gas tankless water heater and an electric one, there are pros and cons to consider. Generally speaking, electric models tend to be more affordable up-front and require less maintenance than gas models.

Additionally, they’re easy to install and don’t require annual inspections by qualified professionals. On the other hand, gas units tend to be more energy-efficient, providing higher flow rates and hot water temperatures that electric models can’t achieve.

Homeowners should consider which type of water heater is appropriate for their needs, budget, and lifestyle.