Gas and Electric Water Heaters
The facts about standard gas and electric-fueled water heaters
In American homes, gas water heaters are the most common type of water heating system, and most models hold 20 to 80 gallons.
Hot water is released from the top of the tank, while cold water enters the bottom of the tank so the tank is always full.
In addition to natural gas, water heaters may be fueled by propane or fuel oil.
Natural gas and propane water heaters. A gas burner under the tank heats the water. When water temperature falls, a thermostat opens the gas valve. When the water reaches a predetermined temperature, the valve closes.
Oil-fired water heaters. Power burners mix oil and air in a vaporizing mist, ignited by an electric spark.
Electric water heaters. Like gas-powered conventional storage water heaters, most electric water heaters have a reservoir from 20 to 80 gallons.
An electric water heater usually has two electric elements, each with its own thermostat. The element at the bottom of the tank maintains a minimum thermostat setting. The upper demand element provides hot water recovery.
Whether powered by gas, oil or electricity, conventional storage water heaters have become more efficient over the years but they are still less efficient than a tankless water heater because water is constantly being heated in the tank. Standby heat loss occurs and energy is wasted even when a hot water tap isn't running.
Some storage water heater models with heavily insulated tanks significantly reduce standby heat loss. These particular models have a thermal resistance (R-Value) of R-12 to R-25.
Contact your local ARS® / Rescue Rooter® now to learn more about hot water heater options and installation.