A Cheap Water Heater May Cost More

Oct. 20, 2017 | by Chad Sanborn
A Cheap Water Heater May Cost More

When you're shopping for a new water heater, it's tempting to only look at the price. But that may cost you in the long run.

Actually the cheaper water heater may cost more over the lifetime of the unit, which can be 10-13 years on average.

Talk with your plumbing professional about the overall lifecycle costs. This takes into account the upfront cost as well as the cost to operate the unit. That includes energy costs as well as recommended maintenance.

The American Council for An Energy-Efficient Economy looked at lifecycle costs for a variety of water heaters. First, let's look at some extremes. The ACEE estimates show that a low-efficiency electric storage option costs only $750 to buy, but costs $6,769 to operate over 13 years. By comparison, the heat pump water heater costs $1,660 to buy, but only $4,125 to operate due to its efficiency. That's an overall savings of $2,644.

Now let's look at a common choice that homeowners face. A conventional 40-gallon gas storage water heater cost $850, and would use $350 per year in energy costs over the 13-year life. A high-efficiency option would cost $1,025 upfront but use only $323 in energy per year. Over the 13-year life cycle, the costs savings are $174, from $5,394 compared to $5220.

The situation will vary based on the fuel type used for your water heater and local energy rates, but the bottom line is, a more efficient choice usually offers the lower total cost of ownership. 

It's clear investing in efficiency usually pays off. Talk with your plumbing professional to understand the whole cost of your water heating options that fit your home and your lifestyle.

This blog was developed by Bradford White. All posts, sponsored and un-sponsored have been reviewed and approved by the Sustainable Community Media Editorial Team to ensure quality, relevance/usefulness and objectivity.

Topics: Heating & Cooling, Water Heaters

Companies: Bradford White Water Heaters

Chad Sanborn
Chad Sanborn is the Product Marketing Manager for Bradford White Water Heaters. He has been in the water heater industry for over 13 years, supporting the growth and development of Bradford White in various capacities. In 2001, Chad began his career in the production areas of Bradford White's Middleville, MI water heaters manufacturing facility. Using his hands-on product experience, Chad transitioned into the engineering department in 2007, where he expanded his knowledge and influence by working with the testing procedures and standards for residential and commercial water heaters. In 2011, Chad was promoted to the Sales and Marketing team, where he currently holds the position of Product Marketing Manager. In his current role, he manages all products for Bradford White Corporation and works collaboratively with the sales and engineering teams to develop Bradford White's short and long-term water heater product development and marketing strategies. Chad holds a bachelor’s of science degree in Business Management from Cornerstone University and is an active participant in many plumbing, engineering and manufacturing trade organizations. www

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