Tankless hot water heater mounted on wall of home

How Long Do Tankless Water Heaters Last?

August 15, 2023

Tankless water heaters, also known as on-demand water heaters, have revolutionized the way we experience hot water in our homes. Unlike traditional water heaters that store and continuously heat water, tankless systems provide hot water only when needed, offering both energy efficiency and space-saving benefits. 

One of the most intriguing aspects of tankless water heaters is their impressive lifespan, which far surpasses that of conventional tank-based heaters. While a standard tank water heater typically lasts between 10-16 years, tankless water heaters can have a lifespan of 20 years or more. In this blog, Craig’s Services will delve into the factors that contribute to the remarkable longevity of tankless water heaters and explore why they have become a durable and reliable solution for meeting our hot water needs.

What is a Tankless Water Heater?

Tankless water heaters are a modern and energy-efficient alternative to traditional tank-based water heaters. Unlike conventional water heaters that store and continuously heat a certain amount of water in a large tank, tankless water heaters heat water directly as it flows through the unit, providing hot water on demand. This process eliminates the need for a storage tank and the constant reheating of water, which can result in energy savings and a more efficient use of resources. 

Tankless water heaters are available in electric or gas-powered models and are typically more compact, allowing for installation in smaller spaces and reducing the overall footprint in a home. Their ability to provide an endless supply of hot water and their potential for long-term cost savings have made tankless water heaters a popular choice for homeowners seeking both convenience and energy efficiency.

What are the Benefits of a Tankless Water Heater?

Tankless water heaters offer several benefits compared to traditional tank-based water heaters. Here are some of the key advantages:

Energy Efficiency

One of the most significant advantages of tankless water heaters is their energy efficiency. They only heat water as it is needed, eliminating standby heat loss that occurs in traditional tank heaters. This means they consume less energy and can result in lower utility bills over time.

Endless Hot Water

Tankless water heaters provide a continuous supply of hot water, as they heat water on demand. This is in contrast to tank heaters, which can run out of hot water if the stored supply is depleted.

Space Saving

Tankless water heaters are much smaller and more compact than traditional tank heaters. They can be mounted on walls or installed in tight spaces, making them ideal for homes with limited room for bulky equipment.


Tankless water heaters generally have a longer lifespan compared to traditional heaters. With proper maintenance, they can last up to 20 years or more, whereas tank heaters typically last around 10-15 years.

What are the Most Common Problems with Tankless Water Heaters?

While tankless water heaters offer many benefits, they are not immune to issues. Here are some of the most common problems that can arise with tankless water heaters:

Flow Rate Issues

Inadequate water flow can result in lukewarm or cold water. This can happen if the heater’s capacity is insufficient for the demand, or if there are restrictions in the water supply line or plumbing.

Cold Water Sandwich

This occurs when there are fluctuations in water temperature, often resulting in a brief burst of cold water during a hot shower. It happens because the heater needs a moment to start heating water after a demand is detected.

Mineral Buildup

Hard water can cause mineral deposits to accumulate on the heating elements or the heat exchanger, reducing the efficiency and effectiveness of the heater. Regular maintenance and descaling are necessary to prevent this issue.

How Long Will a Tankless Water Heater Last?

A well-maintained tankless water heater can last for 20 years or more, which is notably longer than the average lifespan of traditional tank-based water heaters, which typically last around 10 to 15 years. It’s important to note that the actual lifespan of a tankless water heater can vary based on several factors, including the quality of the unit, the manufacturer, the frequency of use, water quality, maintenance practices, and the local water conditions. 

How Can You Prolong the Lifespan of a Tankless Water Heater?

To maximize the lifespan of your tankless water heater, it’s advisable to follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule and promptly address any issues that arise. Regular inspections and servicing by a qualified technician can help ensure that your tankless water heater continues to provide reliable hot water for many years.

Water Heater Services in Bountiful, UT

Whether you’re seeking energy-efficient upgrades or timely solutions to unexpected issues, Craig’s Services is your dependable partner for water heater services, working diligently to provide you with the comfort and convenience of uninterrupted hot water. Contact us today to learn more!