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Superior efficiency, continuous supplies of hot water, space-saving design, installation ease, service benefits of modular redundancy, and protection against Legionella are all worth leveraging to land a commercial order.

It’s no secret that tankless technology is rapidly becoming the new paradigm for commercial water heating. From hospitality and multifamily spaces to assisted living and education sectors, the popularity of tankless applications continues to rise.

In selling to the commercial sector, three targets should remain in focus: the owner or end-user, the plumbing engineer or mechanical plumbing engineer (MPE), and the mechanical or plumbing contractor awarded the job. Whether through a presentation for a potential client or through word of mouth from existing clients, strategic product promotion can help seal the deal.

Below is a list of highlights when targeting commercial projects, both small and larger applications.

1. Energy Efficiency

Tankless water heaters operate on demand, producing hot water only when needed, thereby offering superior energy efficiency and cost savings versus storage-tank solutions. Energy Star-certified commercial tankless water heaters using efficient heat exchangers use approximately 15% less energy than conventional commercial units. Take, for instance, the NCC199CDV Commercial Condensing Tankless Water Heater, which contains redesigned dual stainless steel heat exchangers as a single component. Using high-quality ferrite and austenite stainless steel that prevents cracking even under extreme conditions, thereby boosting heater durability, these heat exchangers hold an industry-best 10-year warranty.

The NCC199CDV offers a maximum input of 199,900 Btu per hour, a capacity range of 0.29 to 11.1 gallons per minute, water temperatures from 100°F to 185°F, and a thermal efficiency rating of 98 percent/0.97 UEF.

2. Continuous Hot Water Delivery

Tankless technology’s ability to generate hot water almost instantaneously provides the user with a continuous stream at the desired flow rate and temperature, negating the wait time needed when using tank-style water heaters once hot water storage is depleted. Commercial units vary in load type, flow rates, and temperatures. With tankless, commercial applications can range from multiple units racked together for large applications like a hotel, a health club or a hospital; to smaller offices, medical clinics or boutique hotels requiring only a single unit.

Noritz’s new Hybrid Hot Series combines the benefits of storage in the standard tank water heaters with the efficiency of tankless into one unit, instead of using multiple tankless water heaters. After depleting the stored supply, the unit utilizes the attached NCC199CDV to provide a continuous hot water supply for indoor commercial applications that require a large dump load of hot water over a short period of time.

3. Compact Design

Whether it’s new construction or a retrofit, mechanical rooms are often limited in space. Tankless solutions are produced with spatial limitations in mind. Compact designs such as the TTS Synergy Series can hold up to six Noritz NCC199CDV Commercial Condensing Water Heaters. Yet, measuring 80-inches high and 31.5-inches wide, the TTS can easily pass through a standard mechanical-room doorway. In addition, whether hung on a wall or on a prefabricated rack, tankless water heaters have zero footprint, a major advantage over conventional storage-tank types.

4. Ease of installation

Tankless technology works to minimize callbacks by providing contractors and their customers with a foolproof, worry-free installation. For example, the TTS Synergy Series is a skid-mounted solution with a plug-and-play setup, utilizing individual connections for the water supply, electric, gas, venting, condensate runoff, and circulators. Having only one point of connection in the rack for each of these components streamlines the setup process and lessens the chance for error and mishaps.

In addition, up to six NCC199CDV or the Hybrid Hot units can be common-vented, saving labor by reducing both the number of vent connections and the number of wall or roof penetrations. The NCC199CDV’s fully integrated exhaust non-return valve negates the need to install a valve externally between the water heater and common-vent header, allowing lower-profile venting.

5. Modular technology

For most commercial users — especially service-intensive applications that must never be out of hot water — equipment redundancy is a critical advantage of multiple-tankless water heater systems. If one unit must be taken offline for servicing, the remaining heaters can continue meeting hot-water demand, instead of a complete shutdown. Whether it’s a restaurant, a hospital, a school, or a hotel, commercial applications that must have hot water 24/7/365 can find a modular tankless solution to fulfill that mandate.

6. Health benefits

Traditional commercial water heaters are highly susceptible to temperature stratification and stagnation in their tanks. This creates an environment conducive to the growth of Legionella bacteria, which must live within a specific temperature range to grow.

With Legionnaires’ Disease on the rise, recirculation via tankless water heaters offer a way to combat the bacteria that thrive in environments where warm, stagnant water exists. An integrated or external pump allows hot water to travel from the tankless water heater without excessive storage. Read more on Legionnaires’ Disease and Legionella bacteria HERE.

The goal: Long-lasting commercial relationships

With the increased popularity of tankless water heating among commercial system designers, installers and end users, it’s important to highlight these six benefits when presenting tankless solutions to potential new customers.

And when a project is finally awarded, it’s also important to nurture that business relationship from start to finish. After all, a significant portion — 60 percent — of commercial business derives from repeat customers. In addition, of the 40 percent that is new business, approximately 10-15% is that of word of mouth.

So, what are some ways to secure those relationships?

● Make sure your customer has a full understanding of what is in the RFQ or RFP. Support that customer by ensuring all their questions are answered thoroughly, and that products can be installed as shown on the plan.

● Focus on consistency with delivery. Ensure that what is written in a specification is what gets shipped and received. For more on selling tankless water heaters, visit our podcast HERE.

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