What Size Water Heater Do I Need?

What Size Water Heater Do I Need?

Santa Rosa Plumbers

Your water heater is essential household equipment. A functional water heater provides a continuous supply of hot water. 


It is important to have the right size water heater. An undersized water heater will overwork itself and fail to provide enough hot water for your family. An oversized water heater, on the other hand, will consume more energy than usual. 


Follow these steps to determine the right water heater size from Santa Rosa plumbers, McDonald Home Solutions. 


Determine Highest Water Usage Hours

To determine the right water heater size, first, you need to calculate your peak hour demand. Peak hour demand is the maximum amount of hot water required during the busiest hour of a typical day. For instance, if everyone in your household take hot showers in the morning, your peak hour is most likely during this time. 


Add Up the Hot Water Needed During Peak Demand  

Once you have determined your peak hours, think of all the hot water activities you usually perform during that time. To calculate your peak hour demand, multiply average gallons of hot water usage (for each activity) used during the peak hour demand period.


Let’s suppose three people take a shower, one person shaves in your household, and the dishes are washed once during the peak hour demand. 


The average gallons of hot water per usage for these activities are:

  • Showering: 10 gallons
  • Shaving: 2 gallons
  • Dishwashing: 4 gallons


So, your peak hour demand will be 30 gallons for three showers, 2 gallons for shaving, and 4 gallons for dishwashing. This means that your peak hour demand will be 36 gallons of hot water.

Finding the Right Water Heater

All heaters have a first-hour rating (FHR). The FHR of a water heater indicates the number of gallons of hot water it can provide in an hour. When choosing a water heater, make sure the FHR and your peak hour demand match. The FHR of a water heater is mentioned in the top corner of the Energy Guide.


Some Factors to Consider While Sizing Water Heaters  

➢       Household size: A large household is likely to use more hot water than a small household.


➢       Fuel: The fuel type and availability will affect the size of the water heater you require and the system’s energy-efficiency and operational costs.


➢       Your needs: If your family is growing, you will need a bigger water heater than your existing system. 


Are you looking for a contractor to take care of your water heater installation project in Santa Rosa?  The McDonald Home Solutions team consists of seasoned plumbers in Santa Rosa. We will manage your project efficiently from start to finish and make sure you’re left satisfied. To make an appointment, call (707) 284-1039.