I stumbled across Everun Tankless Electric Water Heaters at this year’s National Hardware Show. Frank Menditch, their VP of sales was kind enough to give me a quick tour of their electric tankless water heater. Despite being in Las Vegas, their display unfortunately did not include the nude model seen in the promo image here. Sigh. Anyway, the Everun electric tankless has one key feature that sets it apart from many of their rivals, it runs without coils. I’ll provide a little info here, and then go on to explain why tankless would be a horrible solution for saving energy in my particular home.
Although coilless technology may not sound like much, it’s a unique system that offers several advantages. If you have ever seen the inside of a conventional water heater (a used one), you know that lime scale buildup can gradually take-over your water heater. Seriously, those minerals just go nuts in there. Once I got over the disappointment of the missing nude model at their booth, Frank pulled the cover off their electric demo unit at NHS, and pointed out how several tubes made of quartz efficiently heat the water through indirect heat transfer. This increases the longevity of the unit and provides a machine that is maintenance-free. Other electric heaters on the market immerse coils directly in the water in order to heat it, causing hot spots which get that funky scale build-up and a decreased heating efficiency.
Everun also put some effort into style and appearance. Rather than assume you’d tuck your instant water heater away in a dark utility area, they decided the heater could actually be installed where people might see it. Gasp! Everun opted for a sleek industrial design, with a red LED smooth touch™ temperature control panel. The result is an easy-to-use interface as well as an easy to clean surface that resists dirt or moisture. About the size of a traditional medicine cabinet, they feature an optional shelf skirt to hide the pipes and valves. The new Everun units provide an unlimited supply of hot water on demand. Which leads me back to why they won’t work at my house.
As the daughter of a navy man, you might expect my wife to like quick showers. You’d be very wrong. Back when we first bought our house, she complained bitterly about running out of hot water. I couldn’t really understand why until I realized: 1) She has no heat-sensing nerves, which means she showers basically only in hot water (water that would scald me, but apparently has little effect on her). 2) She likes really long showers.
Being the dedicated, conscientious and HomeFixated.com husband I am, I dutifully waited several years until our water heater died (see lime scale references above) before replacing it with a larger model. At this point I dusted off my hands and assumed I had finally solved my wife’s water heater woes. Turns out, now she just takes longer showers . . . and then runs out of hot water. If we were to install an instant tankless water heater my wife would never run out of hot water. Do you see where I’m going with this? She’d never stop showering, and I’d be left to managing the household singlehandedly, which I can assure you I am not capable of.
For those of you that don’t have infinite hot water needs that would bankrupt you and render your household completely useless, Everun makes three electric and three gas units, which come in various capacities to meet the hot water needs of everything from one sink to a whole home (in case she’s reading this, a home with my wife excluded). They are available for pre-order and will be in retail stores early fall with an MSRP of $499-$599. Sorry, MSRP does not include nude Las Vegas model.