Tank vs Tankless Water Heating
A major distinction between different electronic bidet seats is the mechanism they use to heat the water. Similar to water heaters for the whole house, bidet seats heat water in one of two ways: via a tank type heater, or a tankless heater. Both types provide the user with a warm water wash, but which one is better for you?
This article will outline the various pros and cons of each type of water heater that today's bidet seats employ.
Bidet Seats with Tank Type Water Heaters
Also Known As: Tank water heater, traditional water heater, reservoir type water heater
How it works: Bidet seats with tank type water heaters have an internal reservoir/tank of stored water. The bidet toilet seat keeps the stored water heated to whatever temperature setting the user desires. During wash, the bidet seat will draw water from this heated reservoir. The warm water will last about 30 seconds before the wash gradually turns cooler until it reaches room temperature. It usually takes about 5 minutes for the bidet seat's water tank to fully re-heat.
** The USPA 6800 has a hybrid water heater. Even though it uses an internal water tank, the USPA 6800 also continually heats the water as it is washing. This provides a longer warm water supply for the user ~ 45 seconds to 1 minute.
Pros: Warm water is available immediately with no delay. Bidet seats with tank type heaters tend to have higher water pressure due to internal water pumps. The higher pressure usually provides a quicker wash. Tank type heaters have been on the market for decades and the technology is extremely reliable with a low power draw of 600W.
Cons: Warm water only lasts about 30 seconds before it starts turning cooler. Not as energy efficient as tankless types since the bidet seats have to keep the water heated when not in use (although you can use the "energy saving" mode to mitigate this). Bidet seats tend to be bulkier in the rear of the unit to accommodate the internal water reservoir.
Bidet Seats with Tankless Water Heaters
Also Known As: Tank-less water heater, instant water heater, on-demand water heater
How it works: Electronic bidet seats with tankless water heating systems do not keep a large reservoir of stored water. Instead, the heating element instantly heats the water stream when the wash is activated. The water will stay warm at the desired temperature for as long as the user is washing. During wash, the bidet seat is able to heat the water "on-demand" allowing for temperature adjustments mid-wash. Water heater stays idle when the seat is not in use.
Pros: Unlimited warm water for as long as the user decides to wash - supply never runs out. More energy efficient than traditional water heaters since the heater is only activated during wash. Ability to change water temperature during wash. Bidet seats with instant water heaters tend to be more slim and low-profile since they don't have internal water tanks in the rear.
Cons: Initial 1 second of wash will be room temperature before the water heats up (the Infinity and Galaxy bidets are the only tankless models that don't have this flaw due to their advanced ceramic water heaters). Water pressure usually not as high as tank type bidet seats (Clean Sense has the highest pressure among tankless bidets). When in use, tankless bidet seats draw a higher peak wattage around 1400W.