Security Plumbing North County San Diego
(760) 724-3795

North County San Diego's resource for all your home or business plumbing.

Water Heater Installation & Repair


Let's look at options for replacing or installing a water heater.

Option One: Standard Water Heater

These are usually glass lined steel. They generally come with a 6 year warranty. The average life expectancy of a water heater is 13 years.

Type of fuel the water heater uses

There are different types of fuel for water heaters. They can be natural gas, propane, or electric. A Natural gas water heater is usually the cheapest to run. Electric water heaters can cost three times as much to operate. What type do you have now? If you have an electric, should you get a gas heater? It's best to talk to a contractor about this. They can look at your setup and let you know if a change would be economical.

Size of water heater

A standard type of water heater holds from 20 to 80 gallons of water. A burner heats the water inside the heater. The bigger the water heater, the more water has to be kept hot. You can be using energy even if you aren't running water. To minimize the heat loss and energy expense, look for a higher R-Rating. If you size the water heater too low, you could end up getting a cold shower.

If you size the water heater too big, you'll be spending too much for keeping the water hot. One of the ratings for a water heater is the first hour rating (FHR). Is determined by the water heater's size, heat source, and the burner size. You should get a water heater with a FHR within 1 or 2 of your expected demand. The table below can help you decide on your target FHR or capacity.

Option 2: Tankless Water Heater

Demand/Tankless/Instantaneous Water Heaters supply hot water only when you want it. You don't waste energy keeping a tube of water hot. These types of water heater supply hot water a rate of 2-5 gallons per minute. Gas fired demand water heaters have higher flow rates than electric. If you decide that your demand rate will or can exceed the unit's capacity, there are a couple of options. First, you can have separate units for separate uses. Second, you can also set up units in parallel.

In general, tankless water heaters have a life expectancy of more than 20 years. There are replaceable parts that can extend their life even more. Periodic maintenance like descaling is critical to maintaining optimum flow and unit life. To save even more energy and money, consider models that have an intermittent ignition device instead of a pilot light.

Option 3: Hybrid Water Heater

Hybrid water heaters are a combination of a conventional standard water heater and a tankless water heater. A conventional water heater stores the water, with hot water ready on demand. A tankless water heater does not store water, but supplies water on demand with flow limitations. A hybrid water heater stores a reservoir of hot water at all times.

We usually recommend the Eternal Hybrid Water Heater. In this unit, cold water enters from the bottom up. This helps self-clean the sedimentation while it works, an advantage over the tankless water heaters. The Eternal Hybrid Water Heater uses a 3 cycle process that retains the heat exhaust and reuses it several times, helping to maintain water pressure. The different hybrid water heaters use different technologies.

If you aren't sure, just call us. We install types of water heaters and can help you decide.

Water Heater Tips

Gas Water Heaters:

Your water heater consumes energy! If your water heater is larger than you need, you may be spending more money on gas than necessary. But of course if your water heater is too small, you may run out of hot water during peak use periods.

The following chart will help you to determine the size of the water heater you need in your home. Simply estimate how many gallons of hot water you will need during the course of the hour when there is maximum demand for hot water in your house.

Shower 10-15 gallons
Bath 15-25 gallons
Shaving 2 gallons
Washing hair 4 gallons
Washing hands and face 2 gallons
Preparing meals 5 gallons
Dishwasher 12-15 gallons
Washing dishes by hand 4 gallons
Washing clothes 10-12 gallons

Security Plumbing North County San Diego
(760) 724-3795