Heating water is the average U.S. home’s second-highest utility cost after heating and cooling the house itself. Water heaters are a familiar appliance in most homes, as they’re commonly known as the tall metal cylinders in your basement or laundry room. Although the favored and traditional hot water tank is most widely used in the U.S. due to its reliability and simple usage, newer styles have surfaced with captivating features, like the on-demand water tank. 

Purpose of a Water Tank in Your Home 

You may be wondering, “why do homes have a water tank?” The heating system in your home is critical to your ongoing comfort and operations. The purpose of having a hot water tank in your home is to supply heated water to your taps and plumbing fixtures on demand. When it comes to hot water tanks, there are many areas in your home that you need hot water for such as your dishwasher, washing machine, and shower. During the winter months, the water coming into your house is usually colder, so for it to be warm for a shower or your appliances, you’ll need a hot water heater.  

Hot Water Tank 

A large majority of people have a hot water tank in their homes. According to the Department of Energy, a hot water tank is responsible for about 17 percent of the total energy use in the average home. Since your hot water tank has a supply of heated water standing by for use, there won’t be much of a wait for hot water to reach the tap for instant utilization. You’ll find that your hot water tank’s life expectancy is about 8 to 12 years, but this will vary depending on the location, design of your unit, quality of its installation, maintenance schedule, and water quality.  

Advantages of a Hot Water Tank 

  • They’re available in a wide range of sizes with tank storage options ranging between 20 to 80 gallons.  
  • They have low upfront costs for purchasing. 
  • They offer better flow rates.  

Disadvantages of a Hot Water Tank 

  • Some models tend to require more space.  
  • They offer a limited supply of hot water when used for extended periods.  
  • They can waste up to 15% of energy through radiant heat loss. 
  • Higher utility bill. 
  • Short lifespan. 
  • They continue to use energy to heat water even when it’s not being used.  

On-demand Water Tank 

We know that hot water tanks are still popular as they provide a better flow and have large storage tanks, but on-demand water tanks, or tankless water heaters, are gaining popularity. An on-demand water tank provides an endless supply of hot water for as long as it’s needed. Because the on-demand water tanks systems deliver hot water on demand, they don’t require a storage tank to store hot water, allowing you to save up space. On-demand water tanks work by using an electric element or gas burner to warm the water as it travels through a pipe and into the unit. They contain a flow sensing device that is activated whenever a tap is opened and, once that tap is closed, the unit senses that the flow of water has ceased and shuts off the heating element. Since on-demand water tanks don’t require a tank, they allow you to reduce your utility bill up to 50 percent 

Advantages of an On-demand Water Tank 

  • They’re smaller than conventional storage heaters. Since they’re mounted onto the wall, it doesn’t take up any of your floor space. 
  • Their size can make them attractive in homes where square footage is a necessity.  
  • They can help you save money on energy bills.  
  • Provides a supply of endless hot water. 
  • Has an average life expectancy of 20 or more years. 


Disadvantages of an On-demand Water Tank 

  • Hot water flow rate is limited by the size of the unit 
  • Complicated and expensive to install.  
  • Can cost three times more than hot water tanks on average.  
  • Cannot provide hot water during power outages.  
  • Water temperature can be inconsistent when multiple outlets are on simultaneously.  

The only way to know is to check with a pro! 

If you’re torn on what type of water tank system will be most efficient for your home, call the professionals at Harder Electrical at (505) 281-4807 for a free estimate.  

About Harder Electrical & Mechanical 

Founded in 2003, Harder Electrical & Mechanical Services provides residential and commercial heating, cooling, and electrical services. We have proudly served the Albuquerque, Tijeras, Edgewood, and Moriarty areas for nearly 20 years. Locally owned and operated, Harder Electrical & Mechanical Services is open five days a week.  

Harder Electrical & Mechanical was founded with the philosophy of providing quality services for a fair price. With extensive training in electrical, mechanical, and refrigeration, Harder Electrical & Mechanical not only stands behind the work we do – we guarantee it.  

Our experienced technicians provide residential and commercial heating, cooling, and air conditioning services. We can repair, replace, and install all brands of equipment, and we provide a 1-year warranty on labor along with any manufacturers’ product warranty. Harder Electrical & Mechanical is your one-stop shop for all your electrical, heating, and cooling needs. Call us today at 505-281-4807 for a free estimate.