Electric Resistance Tank Water Heaters

Because electricity is generally more expensive per Btu than gas, electric water heaters are typically more expensive to own and operate over their lifetime compared to gas water heaters. Despite this economic disadvantage, there are four reasons why someone might select an electric water heater instead of a gas heater:

  • Lower initial cost. Because they don’t require combustion gas vents, electric water heaters are usually less expensive to purchase and install.
  • Ease of installation. Electric heaters can be installed in locations in which it would be difficult or impossible to install a combustion gas vent.
  • Safety. Electric water heaters don’t require combustible fuel, which can leak or explode. They also don’t have pilot lights that can ignite flammable vapors or produce carbon monoxide, which can backdraft into occupied spaces.
  • Fuel availability. Not all buildings have gas supplies, but nearly all buildings have electric supply.

Given these attributes, it’s not surprising that about half of all commercial buildings in the US use electric water heaters. And owners of electric water heaters have several alternatives available that help mitigate the higher operating expense associated with electric water heating.

What are the options?
How to make the best choice
What’s on the horizon?
Who are the manufacturers?
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