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Electric Tankless Water Heaters Recommendations

Hi Guys!

Our house is completely electric, we moved in about 10 months ago and are starting to prepare for the water tank to fail this upcoming winter (it's 8 years old). I'm looking into tankless water heaters, but the propane ones seem to be more powerful and reliable. (We don't have the budget to run & rent a propane tank and line) so we're exploring electric ones right now.

Does anyone have any experience with the electric tankless water heaters, how much energy they actually consume and if they are reliable. Our current water tank consumes about $1.75 a day - which equates to $52 a month just to keep the water hot - that's not including the refrigerator, washing machine/dryer, electric cooking stove, basic living.

Any help on this - is much appreciated! Thank you in advance!


  • JohnNY
    JohnNY Member Posts: 3,231
    I've used several Steibel Elton electric tankless water heaters without any major catastrophes.
    Contact John "JohnNY" Cataneo, NYC Master Plumber, Lic 1784
    Consulting & Troubleshooting
    Heating in NYC or NJ.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,441
    There are several brands which work well. The thing to watch is the power demand -- not so much what they cost to run per month, but the power they demand when running. If you are planning just one, to run the whole house, you need to consider your peak hot water demand. In the New England and New York area, for example, for a 3 gpm total hot water demand you are looking at a unit power of around 30 KW -- 120 amperes at 240 volts.

    In an all-electric house, you may have that -- but it is a factor to consider.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 4,886
    What do you have?
    1 kit and bath with only a shower or multiple baths with large bath tubs?
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,735
    I'm curious...why do you think your tank will fail this winter?

    Definitely check out the heat pump water heaters. There are good $ incentives to install them and they are efficient as heck, and would slide right in to replace your current electric tank.

    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
    mattmia2GroundUpLarry Weingarten
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,747
    HTP also makes some heavily insulated stainless electric water heaters, if your water chemistry is right for them they may last for decades.
  • GroundUp
    GroundUp Member Posts: 1,926
    What makes you so sure an electric tank is bound to fail after only 8 years? Our water here is horrible and I personally own 4 electric water tanks in rental properties that are over 15 years old with no signs of giving up. My folks still have the original $200 Richmond POS they bought from Menards in 1984.
  • olhasmith
    olhasmith Member Posts: 4
    Thank you everyone! You guys gave me a lot to consider! I'm not "sure" the Watertank will fail, just preparing for it :) my parents are in NJ and both of their water tanks failed under 8 years. As this is my first home, and now with covid and job losses, I want to be financially prepared for any setbacks. Thank you everyone again!
  • george_42
    george_42 Member Posts: 121
    the electric tank is much better in the long run
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,735
    If you have financial issues, just let it ride. I bought a house in CT in 2013 with a 1960s era square electric water heater that was still working. Granted, they don't build them like that anymore, but you can never tell how long a particular unit will last.
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • TAG
    TAG Member Posts: 755
    What's your rate ? Size of tank and usage ?

    Do you have the power available in the meter ? how close to where the unit would be.

    As mentioned -- depending on amount of hot water volume needed, location and rebates the Heat Pump units may be the ticket. Out in PA where I have a weekend house doing Propane is common when only electric is available .. it's still the cheapest way to go even with rented tank. I do know someone who went HP ... but his usage was low. People still use a tank.

    At 8 years -- I would hold off as well .... due the calculations so you understand options for the future.

    The key with "on demand" is house and plumbing layout. Understanding how they deliver hot water. I have one (gas) at the beach that feeds the outdoor shower -- it's great for a close one fixture situation with very high demand ... the house has a conventional gas tank.