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History of Water Heaters

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History Of Water Heaters

The history of water heaters is a long one, and it’s one driven by technological advances. In the early days, people had to heat water on a stove or in a fire pit, but as technology improved, they could harness the power of fire and create heating systems that could keep water hot at all times. But let’s start at the beginning.
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Life Before Water Heaters

Before the invention of modern water heaters, people relied on natural sources for heating water. Though sparingly, these water-heating methods are still in use in some parts of the world. One of the most common natural methods is using solar power to heat a home’s water supply. Other uses of natural energy sources before modern times include:


Fireplaces were used as an early form of heating during winter when temperatures dropped below freezing. Fireplaces would burn wood inside them to create heat and warm up a room. They were located in almost every house during this time because it was so crucial for keeping everyone warm and comfortable during cold weather, especially when it snowed outside!

Fire pits

These were another primitive form of heating used by Native Americans back in the day. The fire pits were quite large and often had holes on top where smoke could escape through them instead of just going up into the air like fireplaces. This helped keep the smoke out of people's eyes and lungs, but it also allowed them to see what was happening around the pit since there wasn't any smoke blocking their vision!


Stoves were another heating device used in the early years before people had electricity or gas lines installed throughout their homes. These stove-top devices were huge and filled up most of the cooking area in a kitchen. They also took up a lot of space and required a lot of wood to be chopped and stored to keep them going.

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The First Water Heater

Benjamin Waddy Maughan, a painter in England, and Norwegian-American mechanical engineer Edwin Ruud are a central part of the history of water heaters. They are regarded as the inventors of the first water heater. While Waddy was the inventor of the original gas water heater, Ruud prides himself on creating the modern electric water heater.

Waddy's Earliest Invention

The first water heater was invented in 1868 by Benjamin Waddy for household use. It was a kettle-like device with a burner on top to heat water inside the kettle. The invention was important because it allowed people to take baths at home and wash their clothes instead of having to go to a public bathhouse.

This invention was popularly referred to as a “gas geyser” because it used natural gas to heat water. Waddy’s early invention lacked a flue for conveying gas vapors to the outdoors, making it dangerous.

Edwin Ruud’s Invention
The modern electric water heater was invented and patented in 1889 by Edwin Ruud, who got inspired by the early design created by Benjamin Waddy. Ruud’s invention used an open flame on top of a tank full of water, similar to the original design. But unlike the kettle design, this new invention had a safety valve that prevented overheating and burning down your house!

Ruud then created a company in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, called Ruud Manufacturing Company which specialized in making water heaters for commercial and domestic use. The company did not become popular immediately. Most people doubted these modern water heaters until Ruud invented the indoor automatic hot water heater with actuator valves, giving the company a breakthrough.

The Emergence Of The Tankless Water Heater

The tankless water heater is a great invention that has helped countless homeowners save money on water heating costs. These heaters do not have tanks or storage units; instead, they heat water as it passes through the unit.

This system works well in homes with high usage levels and can be an excellent way to save energy and money. The tankless water heater history began in the 1920s with an invention by Stiebel-Eltron.

Stiebel-Eltron was a German company founded in 1919 by Friedrich Stiebel, who began manufacturing his line of heaters in 1926. He started by selling gas-fired boilers until he began producing electric heaters in 1927. Stiebel then developed his first tankless water heater in 1928 after he received a patent for his product design on May 19th of that year.

Advantages of Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters have some clear advantages over traditional models, including:

Smaller size and weight

Tankless units are typically smaller and lighter than their tank counterparts, which makes them easier to install and move. They also take up less space in your home or office.

Low maintenance requirements

Tankless heaters are self-regulating, so they don't require regular flushing or draining like conventional storage tanks. Moreover, they don't contain harmful chemicals that can leach into the water supply during operation. As such, there's no need to drain the tank when you change its filter cartridge (which is required with conventional systems).

Lower energy usage

Tankless water heaters don't store hot water. They only use energy when they heat a batch of cold water — so they can save you money on utility bills all year-round. Their reduced size also contributes to lower electricity usage since they don't require as much power as larger storage models.

Water Heaters Today

Water heaters are one of the most critical appliances in your home. They provide hot water for cooking, bathing, and cleaning. The average family uses more than 100 gallons of hot water daily, so it’s essential to have a high-quality water heater to meet all your needs.

Water heater manufacturers offer various water heaters to fit any household need. Here are some of the most common types:

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters are considered highly energy efficient because they don't run as often as traditional water heaters. They also don't use much space because they don't need a tank to store hot water. Tankless models only operate when needed and can produce enough hot water for an entire home or just a few people. These water heaters are also long-lasting. With proper annual maintenance, tankless water heaters can serve you for up to 20 years.

The downside of these models is that they cost more money upfront than other models and require special piping to allow them to draw hot water directly from the wall instead of having a tank attached.

Conventional Water Heaters

Conventional water heaters are very popular because they're affordable and easy to install without requiring much work from homeowners. Traditional models come in many sizes, ranging from 5 to 50 gallons. They also come with different temperature settings, which is vital for conserving energy and preventing scalding injuries in children and pets.

When properly maintained, a conventional water heater can last up to 15 years, depending. Gas water heaters have a slightly shorter lifespan of 8-12 years, while their electric counterparts can last 10-15 years.

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Are you in search of a water heater?

Water heaters have been around since ancient times, and they’re only getting better. Whether you’re looking to replace an old system or upgrade your current one, you can rest assured that there’s always something new and exciting to meet your expectations.
If you are looking for a tankless water heater, contact Water Heater Wiz today, and we can get you the best service to meet your needs. At Water Heater Wiz, we provide quality services and have been in business long enough to understand what our customers need.

We have a wide range of tankless water heaters to choose from. We offer both residential and commercial services, so be assured you can get the best solution for your needs. Our professionals are well-trained and experienced in handling any situation that may arise when installing or repairing a tankless water heater.

We will also give you tips on maintaining your tankless water heater so that it lasts longer than expected. So get in touch today for a Water Heater Wiz Tankless Water Heater services estimate.

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