Average Flow Rates in Gallons per Minute (gpm)
|Bathtub||2.0 – 4.0|
|Shower||1.5 – 3.0|
|Kitchen Faucet||1.0 – 1.5|
|Dishwasher||1.0 – 3.0|
|Clothes Washer||1.5 – 3.0|
Number in family Recommended Size of Tank
|1 to 3||40 gallon|
|4 to 6||50 gallon or 50 gallon high recovery|
|6 to 8||50 gallon high recovery or 75 gallon|
Is it Ideal for you?
Basically, most water heaters sold in the market are based on how many gallons they hold. Also, people buy them after calculating on how many gallons of water they’ll need. A residential-sized water heater is ideal for a household with one or two people. However, to a larger family, this unit may not be ideal. A bigger family who do need bigger amount of water for laundry, dishes, shower and others, this system may not be sufficient for your need.
Typically, residential size water heater is only 40 up to 80 gallons. It is enough for one or two persons using at the same time. So, with two or four family members, the residential GPM (gallon-per-minute) is not sufficient for their needs.
Gas or Electric?
Residential size water heaters are available in gas, propane and electric. Both has advantages and disadvantages. To decide whether gas or electric may depend on your preference For example, if there is already existing gas pipe that connects to water heater in your household, it may be better to go with gas than go for new electric installation. Using natural gas is said to be cheaper than electric. If the house is wired for an electric water heater then you can make comparison over the cost in electric and gas. Typically, electric is more costly than gas in a long run. Also, you can consider your location because gas may be unavailable in some areas. If you have this problem, then electric water heater or profane may be ideal for you.
Safety is also a good reason of your decision. If you are worrying of possible gas leak or explosion (recent news report), then it is maybe safer for you to use electricity. So at the end, it is your decision. You can weigh both the advantages and disadvantages.
What brand is the best?
GE, Kenmore, Whirlpool, Rheem, and others are among of the leading brands of water heaters.There are several things you need to consider in choosing the best for you. If residential size is what you need, you can also check of the following:
Its energy efficiency – Also check your Energy Factor (EF) Guide. It will tell you how efficient the model is. It is said that the most efficient electric water heater has energy factor between 0.90 to 0.95. On the other hand, gas-fired has 0.58 to 0.65. The higher the EF, the more efficient it is. It may cost you more to buy it but it will eventually pay for itself in a long run because of the energy you saves.
Its warranty – It is wise to choose the longest warranty it offers. For most water heaters, warranties offered 6, 8, 10 or 12 years. Checking their warranty benefits will also help. Typically, longer warranty also take responsibility in your part, like adding water softeners to speed up the rate of anode corrosion. There is also so called “labor warranties”, which usually offered in the first year of use. That covers the labor to repair or replace. Always check and discuss the conditions, options, and benefits that comes along with the warranties.
Its longevity – Check on the longevity of the model of your choice. Typically, it will last up to 20 years.