I like the reversing the order idea, but something tells me there might
be no difference. I don't want low flow shower heads, we like hot,
powerfull showers. I thought there would be some continuous mixing in a
water heater tank, everyone here talks like there isn't. I still think
adding the inline unit would get me a lot more hot shower quality water.
Any electric on-demand HWH would use an incredible about of power to
do any good. You might have to upgrade your service equipment
(breaker box and lines to the utility transformer) just to serve this
Gas on-demand hot water heaters have there own expensive issues with
venting requirments and code restrictions regarding where it can be
placed. It may be just an illusion that these are cheaper when you
consider installation expenses, availability of replacement parts,
A larger capacity traditional tank HWH in a gas model is the way that
I'd go. Water heaters, in addition to size are rated by recovery time
(the time it takes to heat the tank back to usuable conditions after
all of the hot water is gone). Gas is always superior to electic in
the same volume range, and cheaper too, in most areas.
Forget those low flow shower heads, life is too short to live like a refugee
The trick is to find a way to be able to afford these benefits.
Doing what i said above with the tankless water heater "After" the Tank type
heater will give you way more HW at a single period of time than you should
need or want. I Promise. The Tankless can supply water just about
continuously at say 3GPM/60F temp rise so if your ground water is 55F then
the tankless alone can supply 115 degree water forever. But thats at max
capabilities and you never want to run at that level, so if you insert a
standard water heater BEFORE the tankless and supply the tankless with 80
or even 70 degree water then the tankless isnt maxed out and can supply
that 115 degree water at much higher GPM, ie the tankless is only working
at some percent capacity and can handle fluctuations in demand easily. When
its operating at max capacity any fluctuation in demand will cause a
There is continuous mixing of water in a HW tank, cold comes in the top,
down the dip tube to the bottom and into the surrounding HW. HW goes out
the top of the tank, it cant help but mix. But the water in the tank is
much hotter near the tanks top than it is at the bottom. Thats why a 50
gallon HW tank can produce a first hour rating of 79 gallons, you dont have
just 50 gallons of HW, you have 50 gallons of "too hot" water so you
effectively can get more gallons of "just right" hot water out of it.
Plus the tanks heater (gas or electric) comes on when the temp drops to the
setpoint and starts adding heat to the contents - these 2 things work
together to give you that 79 gallons of HW from the 50 gallon tank.
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