How to Choose the Right Hot Water System for your Home

Hot water flowing from a showerhead in a steamy shower 09

Last Updated: 01/09/24

A hot water system is a necessity in every home. It is responsible for providing a constant supply of hot water to showers, bathtubs, sinks, and even appliances. The most common uses of hot water include cleaning, washing dishes & clothes, bathing, and cooking.

With all these uses in mind, it is critical to choose the right hot water system for your home carefully. 

There are lots of factors that need to be considered such as the type of system, storage capacity, and energy consumption, to name just a few.

Whether you’re looking to install a new hot water system or repair an existing one, you've come to the right place.

As professional plumbers located in Kogarah, we're here to tell you what you need to know.


Why Should You Consider Replacing Your Current Hot Water System?

If your system has been giving you problems, then it may be time to start searching for a new one.

Trying to fix a broken system can be a good idea but getting stuck in this repair mentality can end up costing your more time and money. It can oftentimes be cheaper to hire a professional plumber to source and install the system, rather than trying to salvage an old one.

If you wait until after your hot water system fails completely, you’ll have no choice except to call an emergency plumber near you. This will cost you time, money, and a significant amount of stress. 

In short, it’s better to look for signs that tell you it’s time to replace your current hot water system. 

The average life of a hot water system is about 10 years. So, if your current system has surpassed or is nearing the 10-year mark, it’s probably a good idea to look for signs of wear and tear.

There are plenty of signs you can look for to determine if you need to replace your current hot water system.

The first and most obvious sign is performance issues. If your water isn’t as hot as it used to be or there’s no hot water at all, it’s time for an upgrade. 

The second most important sign you should look out for is how often it breaks down and needs repairs. If it is happening more frequently than it should, it may be better to replace it.

Last but not least, if you notice your energy bill skyrocketing to keep your water hot, that's another big reason to replace your system. 

With that, you now know when to replace the hot water system in your home.

Tips for Selecting the Right Hot Water System

If you’re looking for some expert advice on how to choose the right hot water system, be sure to read the following tips to make a well-informed choice.

1. Decide the Type of Hot Water System

If you’re in the market for a new system, first you need to determine the type of system you prefer. 

Currently, there are four different types of hot water systems available on the market. These systems can be storage water heaters (where water is heated and stored in a tank for use) or continuous flow/instantaneous (where hot water is instantly heated when required).

2. Consider the Number of Users

Once you’ve determined the type of hot water system you want to install in your home, the next factor you need to consider is the number of users. 

You see, the type and size of the system you should buy depends largely on how many people will be using it.

A standard system can store approximately 200 litres of hot water. But if your home has multiple bathrooms with showers, sinks, and attached toilets in each, you should probably consider installing a system with a larger capacity. Even a tankless (continuous flow) system will come in different sizes based on flow rate. The more people you have using hot water at once, the greater the flow rate of your system needs to be.

3. Want Continuous Flow or Storage Tank?

The next decision you need to make for choosing the right system is whether you want a system that heats your water as needed or a storage tank.

Most types of hot water systems come with a storage tank, and for large households, a system with a storage tank is more cost-effective. However, if you’re a small household, installing a system with a continuous flow would be a better choice.

4. Keep Water Usage in Mind

Water usage is a crucial factor when choosing a hot water system for your home. 

On average, a person uses around 150+ litres of water per day. So based on the number of people in your household, you need to calculate the daily average water usage in your home. 

5. Think of Appliances that will Use Hot Water

An average household of four members may use hundreds of litres of water on a daily basis. 

But if you also have appliances that use hot water daily (i.e., washing machine & dishwasher), your daily hot water usage might be even more.

Having lots of appliances that use hot water doesn’t necessarily mean you need a higher-capacity water heater. However, you might want to think about installing a mains pressure system. This allows you to maintain equal pressure when multiple hot water taps are being used simultaneously.

6. Price vs Quality Comparison

Price & quality are both important factors when buying a new system. There are a couple of things you need to consider to ensure you’re making the right choice.

For example, if you’re a property investor and don’t know how much hot water your occupants will be using, you may want to install a small, reasonably priced system.

Usually, electric hot water systems are a bit cheaper and will do the job well.

Conversely, if you’re a property owner-occupier, you should definitely consider installing a top-range and efficient system (depending on your budget). 

If the budget is not an issue, you can also consider installing solar hot water systems and the required solar infrastructure. These systems have a huge upfront cost, especially if you don’t already have solar. But they will save you thousands for years to come. 

7. Evaluate the Space Needed for a Hot Water System

If you’re planning to replace your current hot water system with a new one, don’t assume that the new system will fit in the space where the current system is occupied. 

Due to efficiency improvements & updated insulation, newer models of hot water systems may have their size and shape changed. 

Hot water systems can be installed in multiple places. They will typically be installed outside the home but can also be located inside, under a bench, or in a garage with suitable ventilation. For convenience, it’s worth making sure that the new system you purchase can be fitted in the same space. 

8. Assess Energy Efficiency

Solar power is no longer a rare energy source. Thanks to advances in technology, more homes are now making the switch to solar for a win-win situation (major cost savings & minimum carbon footprint).

Just like solar panels, solar hot water systems can convert power from the sun to heat your water. So, if you prefer your new system to be energy efficient, you should consider replacing your current hot water system with a solar system. Heat pump systems are another energy-efficient option, and even gas and electric systems can be fairly efficient if you choose the most energy-saving models.

Ask Professionals to Install the System

So, these are the main tips you need to keep in mind when searching for a new hot water system.

If you still can’t decide or you’re ready for professional installation services, we can help. We service St George, Sutherland Shire, and the Greater Sydney area with professional plumbing solutions.

Whether you're in Rockdale, Cronulla, Hurstville, or anywhere else in Sydney, contact us today and we will send a licensed plumber to analyse your home and suggest the best-suited hot water system based on your preference and budget. We can then remove the old unit and seamlessly install the new system, so you can get back to enjoying hot showers in no time at all!

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