Types of Hot Water Systems

Hot water systems use various methods to supply hot water to homes. These methods include gas, electric, solar and heat pump. In order to purchase the right product for your hot water requirements, you need to first assess your hot water needs. This involves working out the size and heating capacity required to meet these hot water needs.

There are two main types of hot water systems, storage and continuous flow systems. It is important to make an estimate of how much hot water will be required at maximum demand. For example, in the morning when everyone needs to take a shower.

Storage Hot Water Systems

Larger tank — When choosing a larger tank, know that it takes more energy to heat the water. In addition to this, ensure that the tank has a thick layer of insulation. This will keep the water hot inside the tank and help save on energy costs. 

Smaller tank — Many people make the mistake of thinking that smaller tanks will always mean lower energy bills. However, this may not be the case if the chosen system isn't very energy efficient. The most important thing is to ensure that the hot water system has a good energy rating.

Continuous Hot Water Systems

These hot water systems supply hot water according to demand. As there is a continuous flow of hot water, the most important factor to consider is the flow rate. This flow rate basically determines how much hot water the system can supply at one point in time. Again, this means making an estimate of your hot water needs at maximum demand. Gas hot water systems typically have a better flow rate than electric hot water systems.

Energy Efficient Hot Water Systems

The most energy-efficient hot water systems are solar and heat pump units. These are better for the environment and also have less running costs. Solar hot water units use the sun's energy to heat water in the tank and consist of solar collector panels. Heat pumps extract heat from surrounding air to heat the water, saving money and energy in the process. They are, however, expensive to install initially. The government does often offer rebates for these systems for some households, so you should check whether you are eligible for this scheme.

When choosing a hot water system, you must remember that you are the best judge of your hot water needs and should choose one accordingly.