Water heaters are something that we really cannot live without, at least those of us living in colder regions of the planet. They are such an important part of our lives that we hardly ever notice that they are even there, that is, until one goes bust. It is only when the cold water hits our hands and causes that sharp bolt of shock, that we realize how invaluable our water heater really is!
The first water heater was invented in 1889, in fact, water heaters have been around for so long that even the companies that manufacture them no longer think about adding new features or innovating their products. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” right?
Well, that isn’t exactly true in this case, there was one big problem with the traditional water heaters. And what problem was that? Well, they literally wasted hundreds of gallons of water. If you ever owned one of these water heaters, you would know exactly what we are talking about. Water being wasted wasn’t something that bothered people in the days gone by and companies didn’t have the technology to make something better.
That is until 1927, when the first “instantaneous” or tankless water heater was invented by Stiebel-Eltron. At the time, this new technology was not yet effective enough to replace the standard water heater. Over the years, with technological advancements, the efficiency of tankless water heaters started to increase. By the 1990s, people were realizing the huge advantages of these new systems and tankless water heaters were making a serious impact on the market.
Today, there are tons of different brands and styles of electric tankless water heaters available. It is estimated that the best electric tankless water heaters can reduce water consumption by up to 40% in each household!
Best Electric Tankless Water Heaters
Here is our comprehensive review of the best electric tankless water heaters. For this review, we tested 20 different water heaters and narrowed it down to our favorite 5. At the end of the post, we have included a buying guide – this should help you decide which product is perfect for you.
|Sio Green IR260||30 amps||6.75 lb||9||Check Price|
|Stiebel Eltron 12 Plus Tempra||50 amps||13.5 lb||10||Check Price|
|Eemax EEM24018||40 amps||14.5 lb||9||Check Price|
|Rheem RTEX – 24||NA||17.8 lb||9||Check Price|
|EcoSmart ECO 11||33 amps||6.5 lb||9||Check Price|
Sio Green IR260 – Perfect if you are on a budget
The Sio Green IR260 is so small that it makes you wonder if it will actually manage to heat up gallons of water for your shower. It is extremely lightweight and very simple to install. There’s a temperature control knob that allows you to set the desired temperature.
However, our recommendation is that you simply turn the knob all the way to the hottest setting and then as the water starts flowing, slowly dial the knob down to a temperature that works for you. That way, you won’t affect the initial flow of water through the heater.
Also, you don’t have to worry about getting burnt – the temperature is generally not too hot when you turn it on for the first time. However, that can change pretty quickly as this little guy can seriously pack a punch when it comes to delivering hot water in great quantities.
Hook up your showers, sinks, and faucets to this guy and it will be able to handle them all together at the same time, without a significant drop in water temperature! Definitely, a great product and it’s very affordable.
Stiebel Eltron 12 Plus Tempra – Editor’s pick!
One of the primary problems that homeowners face in the colder states is huge electricity bills. This is primarily due to the use of several water heaters, each of which supplies to a single bathroom or kitchen. A great solution to this high electricity bill would be to get one of the best electric tankless water heater that is available in the market: Stiebel Eltron 12 Plus.
The Stiebel Eltron 12 Plus is definitely one of the best options that you can go with. This small but powerful heater can single-handedly supply enough hot water for the entire house at the same time! Yes, we ran three showers all at the same time and this guy handled it without a problem. And the best part is that our power bill was significantly lower than the previous two months – when we had been using three separate water heaters for each of our bathrooms.
We heard about this guy from our old neighbor who had been using this for over 5 years now. He mentioned that he never had a single issue with this product and from what I’ve seen in these few months that I’ve been using it, the Stiebel has been built to last decades. This is just an excellent product and I couldn’t be happier with it.
Eemax EEM24018 – Easy to install
One common problem that we faced time and again was the incredibly high costs to install the water heaters. A single visit by the plumber or electrician can often end up costing a whopping $500.
Since we are not really familiar with the way the electrical and plumbing systems work, doing it ourselves is not really an option for most devices. But that was completely different with the Eemax EEM24018. This neat little electric tankless water heater is small, lightweight and best of all, easy to install.
There are wonderfully detailed Youtube videos out there that show you exactly how to do it and we have definitely saved several hundreds of dollars thanks to the good souls who posted those videos. As far as performance goes, the Eemax is right up there at the top with the best electric tankless water heaters.
We put it through the usual test of running three full showers at the same time and although it seemed to struggle for the first minute, it passed with flying colors after the water supply stabilized. This guy can supply more hot water than you could ever need in your life.
Rheem RTEX – 24 – Heavy but powerful
Finding space for your electrical equipment can often be a challenging task as not all of us live in houses with spacious basements and attics. This is often the case for city dwellers who have to settle for apartments with a shared water supply. In such cases, installing a 40-gallon traditional water heater will eat up the little space that you do have in your bath.
That’s where the Rheem RTEX – 24 wins over the other water heaters. This electric tankless water heater is neat and small and usually fits inside the smallest of corner spaces. Once installed, you can simply forget all about its existence for the workmanship is excellent and this fellow should last for decades without any sort of maintenance.
Please note that you do have to install 3 separate 40 amp breakers when setting this thing up. If you are not sure about how to do that, it is definitely advisable to call in an electrician to set it up for you. Trust me, it will be a one-time thing and you will definitely reap the reward for the money spent with several long, uninterrupted and wonderful hot showers! The RTEX – 24 is one of the top heaters to go for, especially if you live somewhere where space availability is an issue.
EcoSmart ECO 11 – Super reliable and lifetime warranty
There will definitely be times when you do not want the best-selling beasts that we’ve listed above. Instead, you want a product that is less powerful and easier on your wallets but something that still gives you good performance and delivers hot water whenever you want. For such situations, the EcoSmart ECO 11 is your #1 choice.
It is small, easy to install, easy to operate and best of all, very easy on your wallet. The device has an auto-power adjust feature that allows it to save electricity consumption without compromising on the water temperature. It is ideal for small homes and apartments where you will almost never have to use two or more showers at the same time.
Don’t get us wrong though, the ECO 11 can actually handle two to three showers at the same time, but it is not as efficient at doing so as the other electric tankless water heaters on this list. That being said, it is a great choice for small cottages as well, where you can run a shower while running a dishwasher at the same time. This is the perfect product for you if you are on a budget but still want a quality product.
As far as getting good hot water for a bath or shower goes, I can clearly see why electric tankless water heaters have taken over the market. They have so many useful advantages over the traditional power-hungry water heaters that it is no longer a question of which is the better option.
Although these heaters may cost you more than the traditional tank heaters, you will realize the benefits in just a few months through reduced power bills that will leave a few dollars in your pocket every month. Gone will be the days of waiting for the water to heat up and waiting for the heater tank to fill up mid-way through your shower.
Electric Tankless water heaters have solved almost all problems that came with the old tank water heaters and are definitely here to stay. It would be a very wise decision to invest in a good quality device now and not have to worry about this stuff for the next 10 years.
Full History Of Water Heaters
It is estimated that the best electric tankless water heaters can reduce water consumption by up to 40% in each household!
With that statistic, let us dive deeper into this topic and understand what makes this cool new product so unique and revolutionary. Oh, but before we do that, let us first cut back to around 15,000 BC, when men still live in caves and hunt for food. Our clever ancestors have figured out how to use fire and are putting the new discovery to superb use. Fish is now yummy and meat is now soft! Way to go, clever ancestor.
Now, if only they could find a way to clean themselves without having to plunge into the icy cold river. Oh wait, how about putting a pot of water over a fire, heat it up and then use that hot water to clean ourselves? Bingo! The first water heater is born.
Fast forward 16,000 years to 1900s, let us look at how most of the people get hot water. Hmm, a metal tank seems to get filled up with water first and then, a burner heats it up! Not too different from that clever ancestor, huh. Don’t worry, things are about to change pretty quickly.
Let’s come back to 2019, we no longer have to worry about this problem with the emergence of the wonderful electric tankless water heaters. No pot, no burning! A water heater that does the job on the fly, as and when you need hot water. Our modern and super-clever engineers have found a way to pass the water through heated electric coils which, as you would expect, heat up the water instantly.
This new technology will save billions of gallons of water in the years to come. Traditional heaters take a few minutes to heat up the water and the water that is already in the pipes doesn’t even get heated up. This means that 99% of the time, this water is let out and people simply waste it. This can also be completely avoided by using the best electric tankless water heaters that give hot water instantly.
Electric Tankless Water Heater Buying Guide
When buying electric tankless water heaters, it is important to look at their power rating – is the power rating that decides how much energy the device will consume. Ideally, you should go for a model that gives you the most value (heat) for your money (power). This will conserve power and also reduce your carbon footprint.
Another point to keep in mind when looking to buy one of these is to make sure that you are indeed buying an electric one rather than a gas powered tankless water heater. The electric ones are more efficient and don’t require as much power. They tend to look similar so make sure you do your research and if you can’t figure it out, ask for help.
When it comes to installation, we do have to give it to the traditional water heaters – they are easier to install. However, the long terms benefits that come with using an electric tankless water heater will definitely outweigh the installation cost. These tankless electric water heaters often require two to three double poles which need to be properly installed.
Be sure to check the instruction manual carefully before picking the heater that is right for you. Most manufacturers provide detailed installation videos in addition to the usual instructions. These are invaluable and can help you save hundreds of dollars in installation charges. If you aren’t an expert at installing this stuff, we recommend getting professional help.