Continuous Flow Hot Water Technology Explained
Do you remember that morning you were really looking forward to a hot shower, but when you got there, someone had already used all the hot water? Not a great feeling, is it? Storage water heaters used to be the only option for heating up the water in your home, but not anymore!
Continuous flow water heaters – otherwise known as instantaneous water heaters – are a miraculous little invention at the forefront of technology which is designed to heat the water as it is needed, as opposed to storing hot water.
How it works:
When you turn a hot tap on, the flow sensor triggers a burner in gas systems and a heating element in electric systems – this begins the heating process. The copper piping within the system heats up, in turn, heating up the water as it flows through the piping, and out of the tap. The system will shut off when you turn off the tap.
The beauty of this type of system is that there is no water storage, therefore any heat loss. This will save you energy and dollars in the long run and you won’t run out of hot water. The only time water needs to be maintained at a certain heat is while the tap is open.
Some electronic continuous flow water heaters, included in the range Bosch have on offer, have a temperature controller which allows specific temperature adjustment, which can be very handy.
Gas continuous flow hot water systems are one of the most efficient ways to heat water in your home. While electric continuous flow systems are more environmentally friendly than their storage tank equivalents, they still generate more greenhouse gas than a gas storage tank.
Continuous flow systems that run on gas can either have a gas pilot light to trigger the burner, or an electronic ignition which lights the gas with a spark. While the pilot light serves a purpose in storage water heaters, it is a waste of energy in continuous flow water heaters, so the ignition is the most efficient option.
Where to install your system:
Continuous flow water heaters are quite a bit smaller than your standard storage water heater, which means more options when it comes to installation. Some models are able to be installed indoors, in the roof or under the house, but they are always more expensive than your outdoor systems.
You may find it takes a bit longer for hot water to emerge from your tap – this is because the water doesn’t start heating until you turn the tap on. A great way to conserve water in this instance is to make sure your system is installed as close as possible to the outlet used the most, as the water will have less distance to travel.
For more information check out the Bosch Climate website, they’ve got a good Education Centre for all the technology behind their hot water systems.
Author: Danielle Henderson