Most Common Types of Water Heaters

So far, we covered two main categories of water heaters. We put them in the tank water heater and tankless water heater category. Now in this article, we will take a look at the fuel source.

Most Common Types of Water Heaters

Each water heater uses one of the following fuel sources: electricity, gas, solar power, or hybrid. Below you can read about the pros and cons of each type of water heater.

Electric Water Heater

Electric water heaters are affordable. However, their life expectancy is much shorter than other types of water heaters. The good news is that the electric water heater does not require ventilation since it is not producing CO2.

Electric heaters are slowest at heating water. Also, make sure that the electricity is not expensive. Some countries have electricity much more expensive than gas. You can buy an electric tank or tankless water heater. Most people buy point of use electric water heaters.


  • Affordable
  • Easy to Install
  • No Need for Ventilation


  • Slow at Heating
  • Not Economical, Especially if Electricity is Expensive in Your Area

Gas Water Heater

Natural gas heaters are more expensive than electric, but in the long run, you will be saving money because natural gas filters are economical. Natural gas is cheap and widely used as a heat source. If you have a gas pipe in your home, then this is the better option than an electric water heater. However, if there is no gas pipe in your home, then the cost of having a gas water heater can rapidly grow.

Natural gas heaters are fast at heating and consume less energy. In the end, your utility bill for hot water will go down. Another useful feature is that this type of heater can work even if there is no electricity.

Make sure that there is proper ventilation because gas leaks or high CO2 levels, which can rise from burning oxygen, are fatal.


  • Efficient
  • Fast Heating
  • Gas is Cheap


  • Creates CO2
  • Needs Ventilation
  • Higher Initial Cost

Hybrid Water Heater

Hybrid water heaters are actually electric water heaters but their use heat pump that pumps the surrounding hot ear and then use that air to heat the water. This type of heaters are new on the market, and they are incredibly economical, but the initial price you need to pay for them is a bit high. 

In the long run, this tank water heater will save your money and provide hot water for a long time. However, if the air around the water heater is getting too cold, then it will use more electricity, and won’t save much power. 


  • Most Efficient heating Method
  • Saves Money on Long Run


  • High Initial Cost
  • Not Saving Energy When Surrounding Area is Too Cold

Solar Water Heater

If you want a solar water heater, you will need to pay a little higher initial cost. But for that money, you can cut down up to an 80% heating bill. Because of the low heating cost, this water heater is one of the most popular choices in areas with plenty of suns.

Lots of suns are required for a solar water heater to be useful. If you live in Florida, California, Arizona, or any other hot place, then you should consider getting a solar water heater. However, if you live in the northern parts of the country where the sky is clouded during the day most of the time, then the solar water heater is not for you. 

Still, even if you live in a sunny place during the night, you won’t have hot water unless you have a secondary water heater. Because of elements that are not predictable, it is unknown if solar water heaters are a worthy source for hot water. 


  • No Cost Hot Water But Only During The Sun
  • Significantly Cut Heating Water Expenses


  • Need For Secondary Water Heater
  • Only Works in Sunny Areas
  • Don’t Work at Night or When Cloudy

Which Water Heater is The Best?

New technology brings some new ways of heating water, but I am afraid that the old way with an electric or gas-fueled heater is the best way to heat water. Solar water heater obviously has problems with the sun, and a hybrid water heater has issues with the cold. However, I would recommend a hybrid water heater before the solar water heater, especially if you live in the south where temperatures, even in winter, don’t drop below zero.

In my opinion, the best fuel for heating water is still gas. Gas is cheap, and if you provide decent ventilation in a room, all the safety problems go away. 


Now you know all that is needed to know about the fuel that heats water. The choice you make will mostly be decided by the area you live and your budget. If you have a reasonable budget, why not test the new technology and try solar water heater after all.

Leave a Reply