Choosing the Ideal Water Heater for Your Business: Storage Tanks versus Tankless | Featured

Water heaters are often overlooked in the overall system of company operations, but their importance cannot be emphasized. A reliable and effective hot water supply is essential whether you are managing a busy restaurant, salon or retail space. This in-depth blog post explores the intricacies of the two main water heating options: tankless systems and storage tank systems. If you have additional questions or need a customized evaluation that is not covered in this article, please feel free to contact Tropic Air HVAC Company. They've been around since 1992 and can help you find the best water heater for your needs – just give them a call for a free estimate!

Variety of water heater types:

Electric water heaters:

Electric water heaters, a staple in businesses that rely on electricity, use this energy source to heat elements without the need for venting. Their ease of installation and lack of venting requirements make them an attractive option, despite possible operating cost considerations.

Natural gas water heater:

For businesses that use natural gas, water heaters that run on this fuel source provide an efficient solution. Controlled by a gas valve and thermostat, these devices require venting but offer potential cost savings, especially in regions with cheap natural gas prices.

Propane water heater:

Similar to their natural gas counterparts, propane water heaters operate using processes similar to natural gas. Ideal for businesses without access to natural gas lines, they provide a reliable alternative that of course requires venting.

Storage water heater:

The traditional workhorse of water heating and storage tanks comes in a variety of forms, including electric, gas, conventional gas and electric heat pump varieties. These systems heat and store water in large tanks, ensuring an uninterrupted supply. However, standby heat loss presents a challenge as it leads to increasing energy costs over time.

Unlock the power of tankless systems:

Instantaneous water heater:

These on-demand and tankless systems revolutionize the traditional water heating paradigm. They run on gas, electricity or propane and offer potential energy savings of up to 20% by eliminating the standby losses that occur with storage tank water heaters. The key is to heat water only when needed, maintain an average rate of 2 to 5 gallons per minute, and prioritize efficiency by eliminating standby heat losses.

Storage tank vs. tankless

Choosing between tankless water heaters and storage tanks requires careful consideration and detailed analysis tailored to the unique needs of your business. To make an informed decision, you need to understand how each option fits your specific goals. Each option has advantages and disadvantages.


Storage heaters shine in high-demand commercial environments where continuous hot water usage is the norm. In contrast, tankless systems can stall when multiple hot water taps are running at the same time. For businesses such as restaurants and salons where hot water is constantly used for various purposes, storage heaters often prove to be the preferred choice.

Energy efficiency:

Thanks to its ability to eliminate standby heat loss, tankless water heaters are becoming heroes of energy efficiency. However, particularly in colder locations, storage systems can increase their efficiency by choosing insulated variants that reduce heat loss.

Unit lifespan:

When it comes to longevity, tankless water heaters are the obvious winners. With an astonishing lifespan of 20 years or more, these systems are significantly superior to their competitors that produce storage tanks. Conventional hot water tanks with storage, on the other hand, should last an average of 10 to 15 years.

The way tankless water heaters work ensures they last longer. Tankless systems simply heat water as needed, unlike storage tank heaters which continually heat a reservoir of water and are prone to corrosion and sludge buildup. The wear and tear that comes with constantly keeping a large amount of water at a certain temperature is reduced by this demand-based heating.

In order to ensure that hot water tanks operate as intended for many years, regular maintenance is essential. Replacing the anode rod is a critical part of this maintenance. Anode rods are sacrificial parts used in tanks to slow down the rust and corrosion process. These rods attract corrosive substances as the water heater operates, preventing them from damaging the tank itself.

While anode rods are part of the maintenance equation, their role becomes less important in the overall discussion. The focus shifts to general maintenance and the importance of early detection of wear and tear. Regular inspections, coupled with prompt response to signs of reduced efficiency or potential problems, are critical to maximizing the operating life of storage tank water heaters.

Maintaining your water heater:

Ensuring the longevity and effectiveness of your water heater requires careful installation, regular cleaning, regular maintenance, and timely repairs.


When installing a new water heater, several factors should be considered, including the number of users, bathrooms, sinks, type of structure, and laundry needs. Reputable contractors like Tropic Air conduct thorough discussions with customers to ensure the selected unit is a good fit for the company's unique needs.


An ideal water heater should provide 40-50 gallons of heated water on demand. Regular professional cleaning includes emptying the unit, using a wire brush to remove debris, and refilling the tank. This maintenance ensures optimal performance and water quality.


A three-step annual maintenance routine is paramount to water heater longevity and efficiency. This includes checking the water temperature setting, testing the temperature and pressure relief valve, and flushing and cleaning the unit. Regular maintenance ensures that the water heater is operating at peak efficiency.


If problems arise, timely repairs are crucial to prevent further damage. This may require repair or installation of pipes and a T&P relief valve. Complex problems may require professional assistance from Tropic Air.


Finding the right water heater for your business requires careful consideration of factors such as demand, energy efficiency and overall cost. Tropic Air encourages customers to educate themselves on the myriad aspects of new installations versus repairs. If you have any questions about tankless water heater services, please call (416) 492-7633, visit the location, or send a quick email. They are available to answer any questions you may have and provide the expertise and advice you need to make an informed decision about your business's water heating needs.

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