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In order to fill up the tub, take a shower, or wash your clothes, you need to have an adequate amount of hot water ready to use. This is made possible via an appliance called a water heater. Water heaters are familiar fixtures in any home, yet many homeowners are unaware that there are a number of different models to choose from that offer their own various benefits, and don’t know how to distinguish between them.

In today’s blog, we are introducing you to four common types of water heaters, giving you insight into how they work and how you can identify them. 

Electric Water Heater

Electric water heaters use heated elements within the tank to heat up your water. They then store the water in the tank until you are ready to use it. You can easily identify them because, unlike other types, they do not have an exhaust. Because they run on electricity, this type of water heater typically comes in at a lower upfront cost, making it an appealing short-term choice for many homeowners. 

Chimney Vent Water Heater

Chimney vent water heaters are run on gas, making them more efficient than electric water heaters. Like the electric water heater, chimney vent water heaters store the hot water in a tank until you are ready to use it. You can identify the chimney vent style by the top hat that sits on top of the tank, as well as the stovepipe exhaust, and it typically comes in at a higher upfront cost than the electric alternative. As its name suggests, this water heater requires venting to be run out through a chimney, meaning it cannot be installed in a home without one.

Power Vent Water Heater

A power vent water heater is an upgrade from the chimney vent water heater, as it’s gas-powered and more efficient to run. They allow for a bit more flexibility than a chimney vent as they can be vented through the home in a variety of ways. Power vent water heaters are gas-powered and have exhaust pipes made from PVC. You can identify them by the fan that sits on top of the tank.

Tankless Water Heater

A tankless water heater is even more efficient than a power vent water heater as it provides instantaneous, unlimited hot water. Like the power vent, a tankless water heater also uses PVC exhaust pipes. Whereas other types of water heaters store water at all times, the benefit of installing a tankless water heater is that it only runs when you’re actually using it, which uses less energy and reduces your bills. They also typically have a shelf life of 20 years, which is double the lifespan of other models. 

For a visual of what each model looks like, check out the video below. If you have questions or are thinking about upgrading your current water heater, reach out to a member of our team.