Choosing a water heating system

Your water heating system should provide plenty of hot water for your entire household, but that shouldn’t mean compromising on efficiency. There's a range of options available to suit every household's needs.

What to think about

Knowing how your household uses hot water will help you make better choices about getting the best energy efficiency and value for money. When you’re looking at buying a new hot water system, ask yourself the following questions.

How big is your household?

  • How many people live in your house now, and how many might there be in the future? 

How and when you use hot water?

  • Do you need a lot at once? For example, do six people want to shower in the morning?
  • Does your dishwasher or washing machine draw on the hot water system?

How much are you paying now? 

  • Look at your bills over the last 12 months. Your hot water may be detailed separately on your bill. If not, contact your energy supplier for help you calculate the cost.  Water heating is usually around a third of your total energy use. 

How close together are the parts of your house that need water? 

  • When you design a new home or change the layout of an existing one, aim to group areas requiring hot water close together - bathroom, kitchen, toilets and laundry. As well as reducing the initial plumbing costs, you’ll save on energy expenses. There will be less hot water wasted sitting in longer pipes, and less time for the hot water to get to its end use.

How much will a new system cost? 

Keep upfront cost and installation in mind as well as ongoing running costs.

  • Upfront costs - including purchase and installation. In some cases, this will also include building consent costs.

  • Ongoing running costs - can vary quite a bit over a year depending on the water heating system you choose, how much hot water you use as well as your energy tariff.

 Compare water heating options