What to Look for When Selecting a Hot Water System for Your Home


Selecting a hot water system for your home can seem daunting, given the range of options available. 

It’s essential to understand the different practical and technical considerations involved. Only then can you make the best decision for your needs. 

This guide highlights critical factors for choosing a hot water system for your home.

Types of hot water systems

Another critical aspect to consider is the type of energy your hot water system uses. Common energy sources include electricity, gas, solar, and heat pumps. 

While natural gas remains the most popular energy source for hydronic boilers in Australia, solar, electricity, and heat pumps are ideal for off-grid properties. 

Each option has its advantages and drawbacks concerning efficiency, cost, and environmental impact. Evaluate your preferences, locality, and budget to decide which energy source is best for your circumstances.

Selecting the appropriate size

The right size for a hot water system depends on your household’s specific needs. 

Selecting a system that can meet your peak hot water demand is vital. Otherwise, you’ll likely run out of hot water during peak usage hours. This extends to both the boiler’s output power and the size of the hot water tank. 

Consider factors like the number of people in your home, how many hot water outlets you have, and when and how much hot water you use daily. 

The size of the system should be enough to comfortably meet your needs without being wastefully large. A licensed plumber can offer valuable advice in determining the appropriate size.

Storage tank or instant water heater?

Hot water systems come as either storage tanks or continuous flow systems. Storage tanks store a certain amount of hot water throughout the day, while continuous flow systems heat water instantly whenever needed. 

Generally, storage systems are ideal for larger homes with greater hot water demands. 

Your choice between these types will depend on your household’s hot water usage pattern and your preference for immediate or stored hot water availability.

Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency is a key factor to consider for the long-term cost-effectiveness of your hot water system. 

Higher efficiency systems may have a higher initial cost but will save you money in the long run due to lower operating costs. Newer high-end systems are more energy efficient but come at an additional upfront cost. 

Consider running costs

Beyond the initial purchase price, consider other costs such as installation, ongoing energy use, potential repairs, and replacement costs. 

These expenses can add up over the system’s lifespan, so a cheaper system might not always be the most cost-effective option in the long run.

Rebates and incentives

Australian state and federal governments offer rebates and incentives to promote energy-efficient hot water systems like solar or heat pump variants.

However, the specifics can vary by location, so it’s crucial to research local offerings. Programs such as the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) are worth exploring. 

Consult a trusted plumber to understand any applicable hot water system upgrade incentives.


Choosing a hot water system for your home is a decision that deserves careful thought and research. Consulting with a professional, such as a licensed plumber, can provide valuable guidance. 

For more detailed information on selecting the correct size for a hot water system, a plumber can help you decide which hot water system is best.


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