October 18

Continuous Flow vs. Traditional Hot Water Systems: Which One is Right for You?

Brisbane Homeowners Have Multiple Hot Water Systems to Choose From

There’s more than one way to get hot water, and here in Brisbane most homeowners have one of two common hot water systems: continuous flow or traditional (storage tank) water heaters. Many homeowners consider switching to continuous flow (or “tankless”) water heaters but hesitate when learning the cost. Still, continuous flow systems provide a number of major benefits. 

How do you decide which of these hot water systems is right for your Brisbane home? The S&J Plumbing and Gasfitting team is here to break down the benefits of each. Here’s what you need to know about continuous flow vs. traditional water heaters.

Continuous Flow vs. Traditional Hot Water Systems: What’s the Difference?

While there are many different methods of heating water in your home, most hot water systems in Brisbane fall under one of two categories: continuous flow system or traditional water heaters.

Whether gas or electric, traditional water heaters have a large storage tank with a heating element at the bottom. Much like a pot of water on the stove, the heating element radiates heat upward to produce a large volume of hot water.

Continuous flow water heaters, on the other hand, work much differently. These devices are known by many names, including instantaneous water heaters, tankless water heaters, and on-demand water heaters. These names help to shed some light on how these systems operate—that is, rather than storing hot water in a reservoir, they heat water as needed using a wall-mounted heating device through which water flows.

Advantages of Continuous Flow Systems

There are many major advantages to installing a continuous flow system over traditional hot water heaters. First, these systems are much more energy efficient, as rather than heating a large volume of water at a time, they heat water as needed.

In addition, while the volume of traditional water heater tanks is rather high, you’ve likely experienced a time where the hot water simply ran out and took a while to be replenished. With continuous flow systems, the supply of hot water never runs out—meaning every member of your family can shower in quick succession without worry.

A few other benefits of these systems include significantly lower space requirements (as they do not feature a bulky water tank) and relative flexibility when it comes to installation (due to the much smaller size). 

Traditional Water Heaters Still Have Their Place

Of course, despite these advantages, there are plenty of reasons why many Brisbane homeowners will choose not to replace their traditional hot water systems. 

One of the main advantages of traditional water heaters is the comparative installation cost. Continuous flow systems cost significantly more to install, especially if you’re switching over from a traditional water heater. 

Further, while continuous hot water systems cannot run out of hot water, they may cause issues with water flow rates depending on temperatures and overall usage. In other words, if multiple points in your home demand hot water at the same time, the flow will likely be lower than with a traditional tank system that has a supply of hot water at the ready.

S&J Plumbing: Brisbane Experts in Hot Water Systems

Here at S&J Plumbing and Gasfitting, we understand that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to the best way to get your hot water. Some folks will prefer the greater energy efficiency and sustainability of continuous flow, while others won’t find these benefits to be worth the increased cost compared to traditional hot water heaters.

No matter what hot water system you prefer, S&J Plumbing is the leading expert in Brisbane for hot water system maintenance, repairs, and installation. Whether you’re looking to upgrade to a new water heater or you’re overdue for maintenance, S&J can help! Contact us today to get started.


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