We're Open & Here For You! Important Coronavirus Information - Click Here to Learn More

Future of Water Heaters

On April 16, 2015 new NAECA water heater standards go into effect. The new 2015 NAECA energy efficiency standards require higher Energy Factor (EF) ratings on gas and electric water heater’s for home use. The new requirements will increase the size of water heaters potentially affecting some homeowners. This is due to the appliances increase in size, potentially requiring more space, additional venting and the potential provision of condensate removal. In addition, due to the increased weight and complexity, installation should only be provided by a qualified plumber in Houston.

The Energy Factor of hot water heaters is defined as the indication of overall efficiency based on the amount of hot water that is produced per unit of fuel. In hot water heaters, the EF is based on three factors:

  • Recovery efficiency – how efficiently the heat created by the energy source is transferred to the water.
  • Standby losses –Affects water heaters with a tank. It is the percentage of heat lost per hour from the stored water compared to the water’s heat content.
  • Cycling losses – the loss of heat as the water circulates through a water heater tank, and/or inlet and outlet pipes. In other words, it is the loss of heat from the water as it travels to the tap.

The new water heater standards will only affect water heaters manufactured after April 15, 2015. Manufacturers will be unable to sell water heater of lower efficiency manufactured before this date. This doesn’t mean that homeowners have to replace their water heaters in 2015. Wholesalers will still be able to sell the remaining products in their warehouses until the inventory is gone.

In fact, if you have recently replaced your water heater, you may already have a model that is in compliance. Some manufacturers have already placed units on the market which comply with the new 2015 guidelines.

Increased Insulation

An increase in size due to additional insulation is a consideration that may affect some homeowners. This requirement will affect gas, electric and oil fired water heaters not already manufactured to the 2015 standards. Water heaters up to 55 gallons will gain 1 to 2 inches in height, with a diameter increase of 2 inches. In some cases this may require an expansion of your hot water heaters location, or if this isn’t possible the water heater will require relocation by a plumber in Houston.

Gas Water Heaters

Gas models manufactured under the new guidelines will utilize newer flue baffling technologies, including the flue dampers, and will provide gas saving electronic ignition rather than a standing pilot or any combination of these. Gas models over 55 gallons are expected to use high efficiency condensing combustion technology. These requirements could require electrical line be run to the location if not already present, even for a gas model.

Furthermore, the means for condensate drainage disposal will have to be satisfied. Natural draft gas models without external electric supply will still be available for homeowners. Residential 60 to 100 gallon supply water heaters will no longer be manufactured. Electric Water Heaters

It is expected that manufacturers will incorporate integrated heat pumps in order to meet the new EF requirements for larger capacity electric water heaters. Residential 60 to 100 gallon supply water heaters will no longer be manufactured.

Complex Technology

An additional change homeowners will find related to the new mandates will be increased weight and the increased complexity of water heater technology and installation requirements. For these reasons, safe and correct installation-or repair, will not be a DIY task for the vast majority of homeowners. Professional installation by a licensed plumber in Houston is strongly recommended

When you use a Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Rosenberg, you can rest assured that you are receiving a plumber who keeps up-to-date on new plumbing technologies, receiving training and certification on all updated new water heater standards and the proper maintenance, repair and installation of new units. When you require water heater repair, a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Houston will provide the professional plumbing service that you require with the expertise that a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Houston is so well known for. Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Rosenberg serves Houston, Katy, Sugar Land and the surrounded areas. We are a member of the BBB.