Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024

Water heaters are essential parts of our houses. They are installed in most bathrooms and kitchens across the globe. Water heaters are  popular in colder countries. There are two types of water heater. They are-

In this article, I’m going to discuss the difference between Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024. To start your search, you need to decide between the two main heater types.


Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024
Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024

What is a Traditional Water Heater?

It is the old version of a water heater. It can heat and store water in a tank. A traditional water heater works by releasing hot water from the top of the tank. The tank always stays full by slowing cold water to enter the bottom of the tank as hot water is used. It can store 40 to 50 gallons of water. The tank is filling again with new water from your water source. The new water is heated and stored, and the cycle continues.        

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What is a Tankless Water Heater?

This is the latest version of a water heater. A tankless water heater heats water only at the time it is being used, Instead of storing pre-heated water in a water tank. The energy needed to heat the water is only consumed at the time in demand. The best part about tankless water heaters is that, unlike a storage tank, there is no standby heat loss. There is no energy wastage.
They come in a variety of different sizes to fulfil your heating needs. You can install it  at the point of use.

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Difference Between a Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024:

The following factors are indicating the main differences between the two units named Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters in 2024.

  • Energy Efficiency:

No storage water heater will perform as efficiently as a tankless water heater. Traditional water heaters need to heat up constant water in the tank. So there will always be hot water on standby as you need it. The heater turns on when the thermostat senses the temperature of the water gets colder. Two heating elements stay on until the water gets hot enough. Few energy efficient storage water heaters are available today.

But, Tankless water heaters work on demand instant use only. In this unit, you can save energy as it needs only electricity when you turn on the hot water. You need not worry when you are asleep at night or out of the house on vacation. The unit remains off until you return and need it again. It makes it very energy efficient.

  • Reliability:

Traditional water heaters are notorious for not producing enough hot water. There is a limited amount of hot water in the tank at one time. The water will only be lukewarm as the new water flows into the tank as you use it up. It will take some time to heat a full tank of water.

With a tankless water heater, there is a limitless supply of hot water. In the tankless unit, you can get instant hot water. Unlike the conventional water heaters, it can heat water very fast. Yet, if the unit is to serve the entire house, you need to install a whole home tankless water heater.

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  • Space:

Tankless water heaters are small in size compared to tank storage models. You can install it outside on a wall. You can place them in both horizontal and vertical positions. So it can save a lot of space for you.

But Tank storage water heaters need a dedicated and larger space for installation. Compared to tankless water heaters.

  • Hot Water Supply:

In the tankless unit, you will not run out of the water. Since there is abundant hot water available. You will not run out of the water. In the case of the traditional water heater, there is a risk of running out of hot water. They can heat only a limited amount in a given period of time.

  • Price:

Water heater price varies according to the size and model. A tankless water heater costs about twice as does the traditional unit. A tankless water heater costs on average from $897 to $2,607 to install. A traditional device ranges from $729 to $1321. You should keep in mind that a traditional water heater lasts 10-13 years and the tankless unit can last up to 20 years. You can even save more with energy star qualified tankless water.

From the above you know the various points of comparison between traditional and tankless units. It can help you to make an easy decision.

Pros and Cons of Traditional Water Heaters VS Tankless Water Heaters:

For the clearer concept, I would like to mention the pros and cons of the two units. Both traditional and tankless water heaters have their positive and negative sides. By weighing the pros and cons of each, you might be able to understand the difference.

Pros and Cons of Traditional Water Heater:


  • Lower initial cost: A traditional water heater installation can be half as a tankless unit.
  • Easy and inexpensive to replace: It needs fewer installation complications. It means that there is less that can go wrong.


  • Bigger and harder to place: A Traditional unit occupies more room. You cannot place it outside.
  • Higher utility bill: Storage unit heats water at a pre-set temperature as per your need. It increases your utility bill.
  • Shorter Life: Traditional unit lasts 10-15 years. So you have to buy them twice as often as a tankless unit. 

Pros and Cons of a Tankless Water Heater:


  • Save money: Tankless units can save both water and energy. It uses 41 gallons or less of hot water daily. The unit can be 24%-34% more energy efficient than conventional storage tank water heaters.
  • Take less space: Tankless units are small in size. You can install it anywhere you want. You can also install it outside on a wall.
  • Longer life: Tankless units last longer than a traditional unit. It lasts more than 20 years. Almost double a traditional water heater’s life.
  • Endless hot water: It can provide two to three gallons of hot water per minute on demand.


  • Higher initial cost: Traditional unit costs $2800 to $4500 installed.


The water heater is a part of our daily life. It has many benefits. From the various above points of comparison between tankless vs tank storage water heater, you can make your decision. The final decision depends upon your budget and preference.

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