What is a high-recovery water heater?

A Technician Works on a Water Heater.

High-Recovery Water Heater

Today, it seems we’re all in a hurry for one thing or another. From getting to work for a meeting or to school before the tardy bell rings. Or maybe getting the dishes done before guests arrive. In most situations, this rush often includes the water getting hot faster, and yet, it just seems to be slower. Maybe your household is the perfect setting for a high-recovery water heater in Chattanooga, TN? If you are interested, please give our office a call at 423-718-7342.

What is a high-recovery water heater?

In the water heater industry, recovery means how quickly the water heats back up. The recovery rate for a standard 40-gallon water heater is approximately 1 hour. With a high-recovery water heater, a 55-gallon water heater recovers hot water in half that time, on most brands and models. 

Are tankless and high-recovery water heaters the same thing? 

No, they are different. A high-recovery water heater is still a tank-style water heater but is made to heat the water faster than the average tank-style. Whereas with tankless water heaters, they are just that: tankless. It heats the water on demand, so there is no recovery period for hot water.

How do you know if you need a high-recovery water heater?

If your household uses a large amount of hot water every day, then you should consider upgrading to a high-recovery water heater. A typical example would be a large family of more than 6 to 8 people, bath time wouldn’t be so rushed with a hot water heater that has a recovery rate of 50 gallons per hour, (or more).

What is the recovery time for a 50-gallon water heater?

Using an electric water heater as an example, a standard tank-style 50-gallon electric heater with a maximum wattage input of 4500 watts would have approximately a 3-hour hot water recovery. This gives you a 70% recovery rate. That recovery rate will diminish over time as the water heater ages and sediment builds up in the tank. 

A high-recovery water heater would recover in half that time, under 2 hours. Just as with the standard water heater, this recovery time will diminish over time as well with aging and sediment build-up.

Which type of water heater typically has the highest recovery rate?

Electric-powered water heaters have a higher recovery rate compared to gas-powered ones. An electric high-recovery water heater or the standard type, has immersion-style elements, meaning the heating elements are immersed in the tank water. With that, they are able to provide a 100% percent recovery rate. With a gas-powered water heater, some of the energy for heating up the water escapes through the flue. 

What is a drain water recovery system? 

Drain-water heat exchangers are used to recover heat from the hot water that is used in the bathtub or shower, dishwasher or washing machine, etc. They store recovered heated water to be used later, which requires having a storage capacity for that hot water. 

What are the disadvantages of drain water heat recovery?

Typically, there isn’t a storage component to a home’s water system. To have a drain water heat recovery, it would be attached to a drain and need continuous flowing hot water to the area you want to store that hot drain water, like a bathtub. This drain water heat recovery storage can be purchased and installed separately, but it is an expensive upgrade. Purchasing a new high-recovery water heater would be the better solution financially. 

Are longer warranty water heaters worth it?

Yes, for anything you purchase that is used every day like a high-recovery water heater, choosing one with the longest warranty is recommended. This can vary between brands and within the brands, the different models. 

How much money do you save with a high-efficiency water heater?

Choosing any appliance for your home that is ENERGY STAR certified will always be the better option. And today, most products on the market today will have that information easily found on the unit because being certified by ENERGY STAR is a must. 

A high-recovery water heater that is also ENERGY STAR rated is using a different technology that can help your household save up to $500 annually on electric bills. Additional savings on the water bill as well because you’re not running as much water waiting for heat up. 

How long does a high-efficiency water heater last?

Whether or not you choose the standard water heater that is noted for high efficiency or you choose a high-efficiency high-recovery water heater, there are several factors that will determine the lifespan of your water heater. Those factors are: 

  • Electric or Gas
  • Brand Name
  • Model/Series of the Brand
  • Maintenance and Upkeep after installation
  • Water Quality
High-Recovery Water Heater

Coming To An End – The Good Old Days

You hear people say about anything made today, “They don’t make them like they used to”, usually about cars and houses, and in many ways, yes, older cars and homes are better than what we have today. However, when it comes to a high-recovery water heater or even a standard water heater, you may ask, “Are old water heaters better than new ones?”, and the answer is no. And let’s be thankful they are made better than they used to be! Water heaters today are more energy-efficient and have glass liners inside the tanks that reduce corrosion. Today, we have more choices in sizes as well as brands, and regardless of what brand and model you choose, or going with a high-recovery water heater or not, you’ll be saving on your monthly expenses. Ready to get hot water fast? Give us a call at 423-718-7342 to install a high-recovery water heater in Chattanooga, TN.