Tankless water heaters perfect for homes stuck in California’s drought
Though tornados, hurricanes and tsunamis might be the weather events that draw everybody's attention, droughts arguable have more potential to do harm over a long period of time. Without enough water in the environment, drinking reservoirs, irrigation systems and many more aspects of every day life are affected.
Californians live under the near-constant threat of drought, and the state is currently in the midst of one of the worst droughts in its history. As counties begin to levy fines over excessive water use and the state government doubles down on programs to educate residents about resource efficiency, tankless water heaters that use only as much water as you need may be the best option for homes in drought.
Examining the drought
Though the heat of summer exacerbates the effects of a drought, NBC Los Angeles explained that the beginnings of California's current water shortage can be found in the heart of winter. The news source explained that 2013 was one of the driest years ever recorded in LA, a city that receives 14.43 inches of rain on average according to the Los Angeles Times.
Throughout last winter, snow levels in northern California dropped and in January, Governor Jerry Brown mobilized several task forces to deal with the impending drought that was officially declared an emergency on January 17. From there, conditions worsened – according to the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services, not a single one of the state's drinking water reservoirs is above 50 percent capacity. Millerton Lake is the most filled at 41 percent, though Pine Flat Reservoir is nearly depleted at 12 percent.
The drought has also affected the way people use water in the Golden State. Unlike homeowners in many other parts of the country, California residents are less worried about how much their water costs than how much they can use. The government has become equally as concerned, as the State Water Resources Control Board passed a July update that gave local law enforcement agencies the right to fine business and homeowners up to $500 a day for wasting water through activities like washing a car or watering a lawn.
If an urban water agency is caught wasting resources, they're slapped with a $10,000 fine.
Save water, save money
Just because you don't live in a drought zone doesn't mean you can't benefit from buying a gas or electric tankless water heater, but the constraints surrounding resources in California may make it more of a necessity than a luxury.
ProfitablePlumbing.com explained that tankless water heaters reduce usage through two ways. First, the point-of-use feature of most tankless heaters means that they only deliver as much water as you need. The unit turns on and off when you turn a faucet or shower handle, so there's little to no water being wasted like there would be with a traditional heater.
This is also another way that tankless heaters improve upon the designs of their outdated predecessors. In a 50-gallon traditional heater, only 35 gallons may be heated to your preferred temperature. The rest must often wait to be heated before being sent off to its destination, but the entire 50-gallon reservoir must be filled again before beginning.