Are you interested in finding the best point of use tankless water heater?
If you are tired of waiting for hot water a single sink or shower, then point of use heaters are for you.
In this review, I will go over...
- My #1 top pick for the best point of use tankless water heater
- How to install a point of use tankless water heater
- How hot can your water get with a tankless unit
Let's get started with this guide!
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Our Overall #1 Rated Pick
My overall top pick for the best point of use tankless water heater is the Stiebel Eltron 120V tankless water heater. This heater is rated at 3000-watts and comes with an all copper heat exchanger. This heater is much more efficient than tanked water heaters (by about 50%). It also comes with hydraulic controls for very quiet operation.
My Top 5 Picks For Point-Of-Use Tankless Water Heaters
Short on time? Want to skip the main article and get to my top picks? Check out the best tankless water heaters below...
What Is A Point-Of-Use Tankless Water Heater?
A point of use tankless water heater is a way to provide instant hot water to any shower or sink in a home without using a central water heater. These heaters are usually installed under the sink or very close to the plumbing fixture --- this is why they are called point-of-use.
Since it is tankless, the heater does not retain any water in the tank, but rather it is instantly heated as the water passes through. The main benefit of tankless water heaters is that it provides an unlimited supply of hot water as compared to tanked water heaters.
I think we all know what happens when multiple people are taking showers in a home with a regular tank water heater.
A point-of-use tankless water heater is generally less than 10,000-watts and is suitable for one sink or shower--- though sometimes a few additional fixtures may be included.
These water heaters are definitely not meant to be used for the whole house nor as backup heaters for the whole house. There are more robust and expensive tankless water heaters that are rated for an entire home.
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How Hot Can My Water Get With An Instant Hot Water Heater?
Even though tankless water heaters are very efficient, the hot water capability of a point of use water heater for a shower or sink (and whole house units also) depends mainly on three things...
1. Temperature Of Water Supply
If you live in Alaska and the outdoor temperature is 10F, then this will significantly affect the hot water capacity of the tankless water heater --- because it has to heat the incoming cold water to a greater degree.
Most tankless water heater listings will come with charts --- such as the one below --- based on where you live so you can get an idea of the water temperature that the tankless unit can produce.
Some single sink tankless units will even be able to be used for the whole home (not just point of use) if the home is based in certain climates such as the Carribean and Central America --- because of the warmer water supply.
2. Water Flow Rate (GPM)
The water flow rate will also have a significant effect on the temperature that the tankless unit can produce. The lower the flow rate in gallons per minute then it will be easier to heat the water.
All things equal, if the GPM is lower, then it will be able to produce a hotter temperature more easily.
3. Total Wattage Of Heating Element
Most tankless point of use water heaters will have total watts in the range of 3kW and up to around 15kW. The higher the wattage, the greater the capacity of the heating elements. Just like the other two factors, if everything else is equal, then the greater the wattage, the greater the hot water capacity of the heater.
Almost all point-of-use water heaters are fully electric --- they don't use gas or propane like their larger whole house cousins.
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How To Install An Electric Point-Of-Use Tankless Water Heater?
I will give a very brief summary on how to install a tankless water heater, but you have to understand, each water heater has its own idiosyncrasies.
Some units can be installed horizontally, others cannot. Some heater will need a temperature relief valve (TPR valve) and others will not. Some are made to be installed with copper water pipes, and others can use any type of water pipe. In order to really get an idea of how to install a particular unit, you will have to look at the installation manual provided by the manufacturer.
In addition the the manual, there is some electrical wiring that is usually beyond the average handy homeowner. Virtually all tankless units will require a dedicated electrical circuit, breaker, and junction box. A qualified contractor is recommended for most homeowners.
1. Mount The Tankless Water Heater
The first step in the installation process is to mount the heater to the wall. Usually there will be screws provided as well as plastic wall anchors. You will simply screw the heater using the provided bracket to the wood studs or masonry wall.
You will want to install the tankless heater as close as possible to the sink or shower that will be primarily using the heater.
Remember, with some heaters you can install horizontally but most units will have to be installed vertically --- check the manual.
2. Connect The Water Piping
Before connecting the water lines, you will first want to flush out the cold water line to remove any scale and dirt. If you are doing any soldering, make sure not to damage the unit by soldering too close.
You will also want to install a shutoff valve on either side of the heater so that it can be easily replaced.
3. Connect The Electrical Wiring
Now it's time to feed the electrical wiring into the heater. Before any electrical work, make sure to turn off the main breaker to the home. You will have to connect the wires to the right locations on the terminal block and ground the unit.
4. Turning On The Unit
Re-install the cover to the heater. Flip the main breaker back on to get power, and open the hot water at the faucet or shower. Wait a minute for the hot water temperature to stabilize. If the temperature is too low, you will have to lower the flow rate at the heater. You may have to remove the cover again and turn a screw clockwise or counter-clockwise.
After making an adjustment, check the water temperature, and repeat until the desired temperature is achieved.
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What Is The Best Electric Point-Of-Use Water Heater?
Here are my picks of the best on demand tankless water heaters...
The Stiebel Eltron is a point-of-use tankless water heater for an affordable price.
This 3000-watt tankless heater uses significantly less energy than comparable tanked heaters.
It has hydraulic controls for near silent operation so you can wash your hands without annoyance.
This tankless unit is made for single sinks and has a solid copper heating system. It only uses 120V so you don't have the difficulty of a 240V circuit.
- 3000-watt single sink tankless water heater to quickly get hot water
- Comes with flow reducer (aerator)
- All copper heating system
- May not get hot enough for kitchen sink usage
- Flow reducer or aerator required
- Cold winters will reduce performance
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The Ecotouch tankless water heater is an intelligent way to get endless hot water at any sink.
At 5500-watts, this point of use water heater has smart modulation control so you can reduce flow rate while the temperature remains the same.
As small as a cereal box, this tankless water can be installed under a sink cabinet.
It heats up to 1.2 GPM and from 67F to 109F so you have total control over temperature.
- Endless hot water that is sleek and compact
- 5500-watts and separated water and electrical lines
- Smart modulation control so you can reduce flow rate (while it maintains same temp)
- May not reach desired temperature
- Only suitable for sinks
The Rheem 240V tankless water heater is suitable for single point-of-use or possibly a few fixtures.
It comes with an external LED display and a digital thermostat --- it looks great.
The installation is simple and comes with 1/2-inch NPT adapters so water lines can just be screwed in.
It is 13k-watts and is rated up to 3.17 gallons-per-minute. Undersized for a whole house, but more powerful than the typical on demand tankless water heater.
- 13k-watts and 3.17 gallons-per-minute... a powerful point-of-use heater
- Easy installation with 1/2-inch NPT adapters
- External adjustable thermostat with LED display
- Complaints of short lifespan
- Not suitable for whole house (buyer beware)
- Instant hot water at 0.5 GPM in cold or warm climates
- Compact size so it can be installed under any sink
- Easy install with 1/2-inch NPT connections
- Minimal documentation and instructions
- May not provide enough heat (especially in cold climates)
The Bosch point-of-use tankless water heater is high quality home product made to give you instant hot water in any room.
With it's small design, it can easily be installed in any bathroom or kitchen closet --- and it can be installed vertically or horizontally.
The Bosch water heater uses a dual chambered copper heat exchanger and boasts of a 98% thermal efficiency.
The heater is 9500-watts and is made to be installed at a 220-volt circuit.
- 9500-watt tankless heater for instant hot water
- Small package so it can be installed under any cabinet
- 98% thermal efficiency with a dual chambered copper heat exchanger
- Complaints of short lifespan
- Minimal documentation and instructions
- 220-volt wiring
My #1 Top Pick: Stiebel Eltron 120V Point-Of-Use Tankless Water Heater
My number one top pick for tankless point-of-use water heaters is the Stiebel Eltron 120-V water heater. Here's why...
1. 3,000-Watts & 120-Volts
This tankless water heater is rated at 3000-watts and uses a 120-volt circuit. Since it uses 120-V it will make it easier to install but it still has enough power to provide instant hot water to your sink or shower.
2. All Copper
The heater exchanger is made out of 100% copper so that it will last a long time and it is also very efficient. This tankless unit is around 50% more efficient than tanked water heaters.
3. Hydraulic Controls
The Stiebel Eltron uses all hydraulic controls so it is very quiet. Who wants a noisy tankless water heater just for a single sink?
4. Sink Aerator
An aerator is a device installed on sink faucets that "aerates" the water which makes it feel like the water pressure is greater, but the actual water volume is reduced. Some people call this device a screen. The Stiebel Eltron includes a sink aerator with purchase.
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