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May 23, 2023

Tankless Water Heater Cost Factors for Installation & Operation

Unlike conventional tank water heaters, tankless water heaters heat the water on demand, every time you turn on a hot water faucet. Today’s tankless units can supply endless hot water during use, and not waste energy heating water when it is not needed.

Manufacturers like Navien build tankless units that meet the demands of most applications. Plumbing contractors, builders, building owners, homeowners and engineers are adopting tankless water heaters as the standard in residential, commercial and multifamily projects.

Tankless Water Heater Cost Factors for Installation & Operation

Although it’s very common to be asked “How much does it cost to switch to a Navien tankless water heater?” the truth is there are several variables. While tankless water heaters will typically save you money over the life of the product, the installation cost is not the same as a tank water heater. Make sure you understand all the advantages and disadvantages of going tankless when considering the upfront and long-term costs.

Installation Cost Factors

The cost of installing the water heater will vary based on the size and type required, as well as the piping and venting requirements of the job. The installation time by a professional plumber can range anywhere from 3-12 hours.

Other cost-affecting factors that may or may not apply:

  • Basic cost of living in your area
  • Number of qualified installers locally
  • Time of the year/season
  • Location within the home where the Navien tankless water heater will be installed
  • Changes required to utilities (gas, electric, water) due to installation requirements
  • Need for special venting or structural work to your home to accommodate your new tankless water heater

To find a Navien tankless water heater installer, visit our “find an installer” page.

tankless water heater installation costs vary based on piping and venting requirements

Operational Cost Factors

Once you have had your Navien tankless water heater professionally installed, there are basic variables that can also affect how much it costs to run and maintain your tankless water heater. Once the end user discovers they never run out of hot water, total water and gas usage is the primary variable. Other variables include:

  • Added tankless features such as recirculation that reduces water usage
  • Fluctuating price of natural or propane gas.
  • Cost of electricity.
  • Temperature of water as it is drawn into your home. Water temperature can fluctuate dramatically by region. Factor how much energy you will use to raise your water to the desired temperature.
  • Water softness/hardness affects the number of times your Navien tankless water heater will have to be serviced.

Is a Tankless Water Heater Worth the Cost?

Navien tankless water heaters will save you money over conventional water heaters in several ways. The majority of Navien tankless water heaters are Energy Star Certified and have ultra-high energy efficiency ratings of up to 0.96 UEF.

On average, conventional tank water heaters are 30 percent less efficient than tankless. Tankless water heaters have a longer lifespan than conventional tank heaters, can last an average of 7-12 years longer than a traditional water heater, and have warranties 2-3 times longer than tank water heaters.

Plus, according to this study conducted by Zillow, a tankless water heater may increase your home value at the time of sale.

Although the initial cost of a Navien tankless water may be higher than a traditional tank water heater, the benefits of tankless water heaters are clear. Higher efficiency products will save energy and money over the long run, but it is hard to put a dollar value on the benefit and comfort of endless hot water.

Learn more about tankless water heaters, or find a service provider to get started:

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