When people think about residential water heaters, they have a distinct image in mind. It’s a simple image: a tall metal cylinder containing a supply of water. This is a storage water heater, also called a tank water heater. (Or, if you want to be extremely specific, a storage tank water heater.) The reason this is what people think of when they hear the term water heater is that tank water heaters are the most common way to heat water in homes and they have been for many decades.
This doesn’t mean they are the only choice. There are alternatives to the conventional electric or gas-powered storage water heater on the market. The most popular of these alternatives is the tankless water heater. More homes each year are adopting these models and finding out they love their multiple advantages.