Trying to choose between a classic water heater with a storage tank and a tankless water heater is something most homeowners face at some point. After all, water heaters are the unsung heroes for a dependable source of hot water. And since your plumbing fixtures and home appliances count on this hot water, it’s always important to consider all your options carefully.

This handy guide from the local experts at Fire & Ice HVAC lays out tank and tankless water heaters. You’ll learn more about the distinct elements in their design in addition to some advantages and disadvantages of each model. These valuable insights will help you make an educated choice based on your home's hot water needs. Once you’ve figured it out, give us a call for professional tank water heater installation.

Traditional Storage Tank Water Heaters: Tried and True

Let's take a closer look at conventional storage tank water heaters first. That ample storage tank is the key feature here, holding onto an ample supply of water that’s constantly heated. The moment you need hot water, a tank water heater can provide it.


  • More Affordable Setup: Tank water heaters will have lower up-front installation costs, thanks to their straightforward design.
  • Streamlined Maintenance Needs: An uncomplicated design also leads to less potential maintenance needs.


  • Nonstop Heating: Tank water heaters have to keep water perpetually heated, which equals extra cost if you’re not constantly using that water.
  • Space Requirements: The tank itself could become a hurdle in tight quarters. If your home is missing a basement or utility closet, installation becomes a bit trickier.

Tankless Water Heaters: Efficient and Innovative

Now, let's explore tankless water heaters, an energy-efficient alternative that’s relatively modern. Distinct from tank models, tankless water heaters operate when needed. They’re generating hot water only when needed, thanks to efficient heating elements as the water flows through the system.


  • Improved Energy Efficiency: Tankless models boast much higher energy efficiency since they’re not constantly running.
  • Longer Life Span: With proper maintenance from a skilled professional, tankless water heaters can enjoy many years of service.


  • Larger Initial Investment: Initial installation costs are higher due to the more sophisticated design.
  • Higher Service Needs: Tankless models do best when provided more routine attention to keep their vital components functioning smoothly.
  • Compatibility Issues with Old Plumbing: Older homes may not be ready for a tankless water heater. Plumbers can modify your plumbing to accommodate one, but it could add further costs to your installation project.

Choosing the Right Water Heater: Tailored to Your Comfort

For most homes, we’d suggest the higher energy efficiency that tankless water heaters are capable of. But this also depends on aspects including how much hot water you need day to day. You should think about your specific hot water needs before you make your decision.

  1. Typical Hot Water Use: Estimate how much hot water your household uses on average. As an example, large families who love the outdoors or have pets usually need significantly more hot water than if you live by yourself.
  2. Sufficient Space to Install It: The size of your home can affect how effectively a water heater operates. Review all possible installation locations and confirm with professionals if your model is capable of fitting where you want it go.
  3. Local Climate: Harsh winters mean much higher energy use that time of year. This reduces the efficiency of tankless models, which are best suited when there won’t be any large fluctuations in water usage.
  4. Energy Prices: Your community’s utility rates can make one option more enticing over the other.

Remember, experienced pros like those at Fire & Ice HVAC can aid you in making a more knowledgeable decision. They understand which units meet your specific needs before facilitating a smoother installation process.

Why Not Call Fire & Ice HVAC?

If you're considering a switch to a tankless water heater in Manassas, why not call Fire & Ice HVAC for a no-cost quote? Our skilled plumbing technicians can provide the peace of mind that you’ll always have the hot water you need. Call today at 703-595-4157.