Museums across the country have begun to put an emphasis on sustainable operations and building design. For example, the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio began work on an extensive retrofit, adding solar panels and mini-turbines to the museum's facilities as recently as 2013. Similarly, the Harvard Art Museum in Massachusetts, completed work on major energy and water-saving renovations in January. The improvements fall in line with the Museum Association's guidelines for more sustainable, efficient and cost-effective building design.
"Tankless benefits could easily be achieved in a museum setting."
The trend makes sense. After all, what better institution to lead the charge toward a greener future than one dedicated to learning from the mistakes of the past. One way that museums of all sizes can make their facilities greener is by building or retrofitting them with tankless water heaters. The smart, efficient design of these water heaters has been instrumental in assisting thousands of buildings in limiting their resource waste.
On-demand performance reduces water and energy waste by visitors
As museums get larger, they typically include additional bathrooms spaced further and further apart. As a result, heating and delivering hot water from a central location becomes increasingly inefficient. That's because attendees are forced to run sinks for extended periods as hot water travels from centralized heaters to various points of use across the museum. Water that flows down the drain during these instances contribute to dozens of gallons of water loss each month – also known as standby loss. In addition, energy in the form of heat is lost along the way, as water passes through uninsulated piping. This heat loss contributes to greater monthly utility bills as well.
Tankless water heaters can eliminate these sources of waste thanks to their ability to heat water on-demand. By heating only when hot water is requested and directly at the point of use, tankless water heaters help museums to eliminate both the water and heat loss that is traditionally associated with running hot water throughout a large, spread out facility. Running at 99 percent energy efficiency, high-performance tankless models are the right choice for any museum board interested in making their building more sustainable and reducing monthly costs at the same time.
Tankless designs lessen material waste use in new wings
Tankless water heaters are fit for more than just renovations. In fact, material use during the construction process of new galleries and museum wings can be reduced by taking a tankless approach to water heating.
Traditionally, centralized hot water systems require two to three pipes. One or two for cold water and another for hot. Tankless water heaters, however, heat directly at point of use – there's no need for separate pipes because hot water travels directly from where it is generated to the faucet and sink. Taking this approach helps to eliminate a significant portion of the plumbing materials that contractors will need to purchase in order to complete a museum's latest addition. Simplifying the plumbing set up by going tankless reduces the total amount of labor and transportation costs for your project as well. These compact heaters are designed to run for 20 years, so you can feel confident that these appliances will continue to perform efficiently for decades.
As sustainability becomes the new status quo for museum architecture, it's only a matter of time before tankless water heaters are found in galleries in every state. Any museum board concerned with water and energy consumption should do a bit more research regarding the benefits of tankless water heating.