The most obvious benefit of hybrid water heaters is their efficiency. Water heaters can be extremely energy inefficient, in part because their energy usage wasn't regulated until 2008 [source: Green]. This is particularly concerning because they often use the most energy in a home -- almost one-fifth of your entire energy use!
Because these models are more energy efficient, the consumer will save money. But what are the specific benefits of all these models?
- Eternal Hybrid boasts an 98 percent efficiency rate [source: Eternal Water Heater]. A.O. Smith has a hybrid model, the Vertex Power-Vent Gas Water heater, which operates at 90 percent efficiency [source: A.O. Smith]. GE's model, meanwhile, should be 50 percent more efficient than its current models [source: GE].
- GE's savings should amount to about $250 per year for an average family. Hybrid WaterHeater Inc. boasts that its potential energy savings would be up to $2,160 per year [source: Hybrid WaterHeater Inc]. Unfortunately, you'll have to wait until 2011 to test that one out.
- If you're looking for easy installation, GE's and A.O. Smith's models will match the standard tank designs that fill most homes. Or, if you're looking to save space, the Eternal Water Heater is about half the size.
Eternal's model also has almost zero greenhouse gas emissions [source: Eternal Water Heater]. This means it is one of the cleanest burning of all household appliances -- not just water heaters -- out there.
Whether your water heater needs to be replaced or if you just want to be greener -- both in your house and in your wallet -- consider replacing your water heater with a hybrid water heater. Don't worry about running out today and getting one, though, as few are currently on the market. Wait a few years and you should have a multitude of options.
For more information, visit the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- A-1 Plumbing and Emergency Rooter. "Hybrid Water Heaters - The Best of Both Worlds for Your Hot Water." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.a1plumbers.net/water-heater-boise/hybrid-water-heater-boise
- A.O. Smith. "Vertex Power-Vent Gas Water Heaters." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.hotwater.com/products/residential/rg-vertex.html
- Energy Star. "Energy Star." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.energystar.gov/
- Eternal Hybrid. "Technology / What is Eternal Hybrid." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.eternalwaterheater.com/technology/what_is_hybrid.aspx
- Forster, Lyndsey. "Eternal Hybrid Water Heating System Evolutionizing the Water Heater World." Ebuild. September 2007. (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.ebuild.com/articles/sectionId.1063/593725.hwx
- GE. "Energy Efficient Products." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.geconsumerproducts.com/pressroom/press_releases/appliances/energy_efficient_products/doetanklesshybrid.htm
- Green, Hank. "GE's New Water Heater Could Kill 30 Coal Plants." Eco Geek. April 2, 2008. (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.ecogeek.org/content/view/1502/
- Hot Water Facts. "Water Heater Basics: Hybrid." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.hotwaterfacts.com/hybrid_basics.htm
- Hybrid WaterHeater Inc. "Product." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://hybridwaterheater.com/product.html
- TIAX. "Hybrid Water Heater." (Accessed 3/1/09) http://www.tiaxllc.com/t/hybrid_water_heater.php