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Which Capacity Continuous-Flow System Is Right For Me?

hot water coming from tap

As important as choosing the right type of hot water system for your needs is choosing the correct size unit for your home. Ideally, the size of your system will sufficiently cover all hot water needs while still being efficient to run. A continuous-flow system can be a quick, eco-friendly, and cost-reducing way of heating your water.

However, for this to be the case, you need to calculate the right size unit for your needs. Let’s take a look at how continuous-flow hot water systems work and how to calculate the right size for your household.

What is a Continuous-Flow Hot Water System?

A continuous-flow hot water system heats water through a heating element. Rather than having a storage tank as you’d find with a traditional system, a continuous hot water system is tankless and heats water as needed. Two key benefits of not having a storage system design are improved energy efficiency and less space required for the system.

While continuous flow systems are most commonly available in gas-powered models, electric and solar-powered options are becoming more common. Most major brands offer a continuous-flow hot water system.

turning on hot water

Assessing Your Hot Water Demand

The right size system will vary depending on the household and the people in it. Luckily, there are a few questions you can ask that will help provide a solid idea of your hot water usage. Key questions to ask include:

  • How many people live in your home? Is this number likely to change?
  • How many taps do you have in your kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry?
  • How many appliances do you have in your home that use hot water? Some examples include dishwashers and washing machines.
  • What are the water usage habits of you and your residents? Does everyone shower every day or do some family members prefer baths? How long do showers tend to be?
  • Do you often have guests or people staying at your house that your system will need to account for?
  • What’s the climate like where you live? People in colder states tend to use more hot water than those up north.
  • Are the fixtures in your home water-saving models?
  • Will your hot water unit be connected to an off-peak or on-peak tariff?

Sizing Your Continuous-Flow System

Your household size and the amount of outlets it contains are important to keep in mind when choosing the right flow rate.

Here is a general size guide based on outlets:

  • 1 outlet = 16 L/min
  • 2 outlets = 20 L/min
  • 2–3 outlets = 24 L/min
  • 3+ outlets = 32 L/min.

Energy Efficiency and Cost Implications

With the cost of living rising over recent years, cutting down on energy bills is an important consideration for every household. The great news is that continuous-flow hot water systems are more energy efficient than traditional hot water system options, due to their on-demand mechanism. A traditional unit needs to keep stored water at a certain temperature, while continuous-flow units eliminate this requirement.

Choosing the right size unit will help find the balance between reducing running costs while still meeting your hot water demands. While continuous-flow hot water systems are more expensive upfront, both for the unit itself and installation, they will save you money over time with smaller running costs.

The lack of a storage tank greatly reduces the likelihood of needing repairs. However, if you do need a replacement part or repairs, it will cost more than an equivalent fix on a traditional model.

Space and Installation Requirements

When buying a new hot water system, where you’re planning to install the system and how much room it will take up are key considerations. Traditional water units tend to take up a lot of room, especially if the tank size has a high capacity. Continuous-flow hot water systems require a fraction of the space of storage tank systems, making them a popular option for apartments and smaller homes.

With any new hot water system, we recommend a professional consultation to ensure compatibility with your home. In a case where the system isn’t compatible with your home setup, your consultant will make recommendations for an alternative that will better suit you.

hot bubble bath

Maintaining Your Continuous-Flow System

Like any appliance, proper maintenance of your continuous-flow system will ensure it remains in top condition and operates smoothly. A professional maintenance and service will ensure your machine is running properly and give your plumber a chance to catch any issues early.

Wondering if you need to call out a professional? Here are a few issues that are worth getting checked:

  • Low water pressure
  • Leakage
  • Inconsistent heat
  • Anything unusual with your water, including colour, taste, and smell
  • Strange noises from your unit
  • Anything that you’re worried about or doesn’t seem quite right.

Is A Continuous-Flow Hot Water System Right For You?

Choosing the right system for you requires considering both your needs and the specifics of your house. A continuous-flow hot water system will thrive in a smaller home offering fast hot water. Selecting the right size and flow rate for your household will both provide quick hot water and be energy efficient.

The only potential drawback is that continuous-flow systems can struggle to meet demand in larger homes. Talk to your plumber or hot water expert if you think this may be an issue for your family.

Get Expert Advice From Same Day Hot Water Service

Same Day Hot Water Service is the only name you need to remember for all your hot water needs. Along with selling the top brands on the market, we offer installation, service, and repairs. We service Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, the Gold Coast, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, and the Central Coast. With our help, you’ll have reliable hot water for years to come.

Get in touch with our friendly, expert team today to discuss your hot water needs!

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