Traditional Vs. Tankless Water Heaters: Which Is Better?

Water heating is necessary in every home. Most modern buildings feature water heaters that help make the process simple and fast. Hot water serves a wide variety of purposes including cooking, bathing, cleaning and space heating. A look at traditional water heaters and a more modern Allentown PA tankless water heater is key when deciding which of the two methods is ideal for your home. In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of each system.

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Tankless Water Heaters

tankless water heater allentown pennsylvaniaThese are heaters whose design comes without tanks. They make use of high-powered burners to quickly warm up water as it moves through a heat exchanger. A system of pipes delivers the hot water instantaneously to faucets or showers. In most cases, electricity or gas powers these types of water heaters. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages you are likely to get when using this type of hot water heating system.


  • Cost Effective- According to most research, it is clear that this type of water heating system is likely to save anything between 24% to 34 % energy when compared to traditional heating systems. This ultimately means that you are likely to save about $100 or more per year when using this system. This means that the system pays for itself.
  • Durability- When you compare tankless water heaters to traditional systems, tankless water heaters are likely to remain in good condition for a longer time. They remain in good condition for over 20 years while traditional systems need a replacement between 10-15 years.
  • Saves space- Because there is no tank, you are likely to save on space.
  • Rapid Heating- When using this system, you do not have to wait to get hot water. The heating process is instant. Also, you get endless hot water when you need it.


  • High acquisition costs- A tankless water heater costs more to purchase and install than their traditional counterparts.
  • Higher Maintenance Costs- Because of their sophisticated design, there is a lot more that could go wrong.


tankless water heaters systems

Traditional Water Heaters

traditional water heating systemThe design of a traditional water heater allows them to store a given volume of water in a tank. The water in the tank stays at the set temperature on a unit’s thermostat.

Once the hot water in the tank runs out, the tank fills up with water, allowing the use of hot water once again. However, this can take some time.

For most traditional water heaters, once the tank runs out, it needs to fill up again and then heat the water before hot water is available once again. This can take about an hour.


  • Lower Acquisition Costs- Out of the two systems, traditional hot water heating systems are relatively cheap when it comes to acquisition of equipment.
  • Simple Design- The design of tankless water heaters is more complex than traditional systems. This means that you are likely to find it easy to maintain a traditional heating system. Repairs are are also cheaper than tankless system repairs.
  • Fewer Risks Of Error- Traditional systems are quite straightforward. Their design makes easier and cheaper to repair.


  • Higher Monthly Bills- Because they must preheat water to a given temperature, they are likely to incur higher monthly costs. Even if no one is using water, they cycle frequently to maintain the thermostat’s temperature.
  • Occupy More Space- Because these systems come with a large water tank, they will use up more space.
  • Limited Supply- You certainly don’t want to be the last one showering with these systems! Once the tank has ran out of water, it takes about an hour to refill and heat your water up to the desired temperature.
  • Shorter Lifespan- Traditional water heating systems last ten to 15 years.

Water Heater Installation


Tankless Water Heater Allentown PA

Both of these systems have good and bad qualities, meaning that what works for one individual is not necessarily ideal for another. It is wise to weigh the pros and cons of each system before settling for the one that is ideal for your particular needs. You can also discuss this with a licensed plumber who understands the ins and outs of both systems. They will help you understand if a traditional or tankless system is better for you.

For professional plumbing advice on water heating systems, contact Robinson Plumbing. Our licensed plumbers can properly advise you what would work best for you and your family. Your satisfaction is our priority. You can always count on us to deliver knowledgeable, friendly, and fast service. Call our office today to schedule a free estimate.

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Some of the areas we service include: Allentown, Catasauqua, Coplay, Laurys Station and these zip codes: 18101, 18032, 18037, 18059 as well as all surrounding areas in the Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania.

Call us today at (610) 351-9889 or contact us for any questions that you might have!