Endless hot water and up to 30% reduced monthly energy cost are the two biggest advantages tankless water heaters have over storage tank units.
At the same time, tankless water heaters have higher initial cost (oftentimes up to $1,000 USD and more). This is because the systems themselves are more expensive, and so is their installation.
In other words: It takes years for the investment to pay back. Thus, it is all the more important for a tankless water heater to last a long time.
But how long does a tankless water heater last actually?
Electric or gas, the life expectancy of a tankless water heater is between 15 and 20+ years, provided that operation and maintenance guidelines are being followed. Many parts are also easily replaceable if need be.
Another important factor is water quality which in this case is mostly determined by hardness – think scale clinging to heating elements – and sediment content.
Pro Tip: Delime Your Tankless Water Heater about Once a Year
Deliming your tankless water heater annually helps to ensure that there is no scale buildup around the heating elements which would not only raise your energy bills, but may also cause irreparable damage shortening the system’s lifespan.
Traditional tank-based heaters have a 12-year lifespan, give or take. If you do the math, a tankless water heater lasts almost twice as long on average.
The major problem with tank water heaters is corrosion due to moisture which they are exposed to 24/7. Some parts such as the heating elements can be replaced, but once the tank itself has failed, it’s over and you have to buy a whole new system.
And again, mineral content and overall water quality do their part as they can influence corrosion speed.
If you have any questions about how long tankless water heaters last please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!