When it comes to obtaining sanitary hot water at home, there are different options on the market, each with marked advantages and disadvantages, as well as a different efficiency, which will also influence our energy consumption and the bill that we will pay monthly to our energy company.
For this reason, when deciding on our sanitary hot water system, we must choose well between the different alternatives: combustion heater or boiler, electric boiler and ACS heat pump.
Which System is Cheaper?
Obviously, the first thing any of us looks for when choosing one or the other system is the savings that each alternative can bring. Well, taking into account the price and its energy efficiency, hot water service Newcastle can establish an approximation to the cost of a daily activity such as a five-minute shower.
Therefore, and although a priori the ACS heat pump is the cheapest and most efficient, the truth is that there are some drawbacks that may condition your choice. So, which one suits me best? Let’s look at each system in detail.
Boiler or Hot Water Heater
Boilers and domestic hot water heaters all work in a similar way: a coil of cold water passes over a flame that heats the water to the desired temperature. The difference between a boiler and a heater is that one is designed to produce hot water also for the radiator system, while the heater is only for the hot water from our taps.
Its biggest advantage is that it produces hot water on demand. We can take a shower without fear of running out or leaving the next person who wants to shower or wash dishes without water. Economically they are quite efficient systems, especially if we choose natural gas, diesel or biomass boilers and heaters (between € 0.09 and € 0.11 for a 5-minute shower), while if we use butane gas, it is a little more expensive (€ 0.14).
The biggest drawback is that hot water can take a little longer to come out of the tap and is a little less precise in adjusting the desired temperature than accumulation systems. In addition, a supply contract with minimum consumption, quotas and maintenance is necessary if we opt for natural gas.
Electric water heaters have a very simple operation: a hot water heater in a reservoir that can vary in capacity. It is what is known as an accumulation system.
Its main advantage is that the water comes out hot almost immediately, and it can be regulated to our liking with great precision. Furthermore, they are quite inexpensive and simple to install and safer than a boiler or heater, which require regular checks.
On the contrary, it is the most expensive domestic hot water system. The same 5-minute shower can go up to € 0.28 with an electric thermos. And we must not forget that, as it is an accumulation system, when the hot water runs out, we must wait for it to heat up again, which can take at least an hour.
ACS Heat Pump
ACS heat pumps seek to combine the simplicity and immediacy of electric water heaters with the energy efficiency of combustion heaters and boilers. To achieve this, it uses a heat pump (such as the air conditioning) that manages to increase its efficiency by up to 360%. This makes it the most efficient system, as it only costs € 0.08 for a five-minute shower, and as safe and comfortable as electric water heaters.
But not everything are advantages; These heat pump systems are still expensive (up to five times more than a simple electric thermos) and, above all, only work well in temperate climates (above 5 ° C), so they are not a viable alternative.
So, what is Better for Domestic Hot Water?
Although, as always, each case is particular, we can establish a series of recommendations for general cases:
If you have a central heating system by radiators at home, it is logical to use it also for hot water. If you don’t have a central heating system, then the electric thermos can be a profitable alternative, especially if you live alone or with your partner, or if it is a second home. This avoids fixed costs.
If you use a lot of hot water, but do not want to be aware of cylinders or have another supply contract for gas, heat pump systems pay off over time, especially if you are many at home.