Tankless, point-of-use water heater for coffee & tea
My husband got me a 12-cup French Press coffee pot for Christmas (only $2 at Goodwill, no less -- what a bargain!). We have a Bunn coffee maker which brews a fine pot of Joe, but there's nothing like French Press!
We've been enjoying it several times a week and think we'd like a point of use water heater for the kitchen sink; it would cost less in electricity than boiling 51oz of water on the stove each morning. The true benefit would be stumbling into the kitchen and having that hot water at the ready. ;)
Do any of you have a tankless water heater for under your kitchen sink? What's an inexpensive model that will heat up to 190 degrees for our coffee?
re: Joe Blowe
Well, I never knew that. And it actually says 99 degrees for black tea.
However, I don't think that can be quite right with teabags. I find 30 seconds for a teabag in a mug (with agitation) is quite perfect.
Green tea, I'd agree with about 2 minutes, any longer and it gets bitter, as does black tea.
I also didn't know that boiling water tips the oxidisation of the water like that; I've recently been in the habit of boiling EXACTLY as much as I need for one or two cups, as I heard that re-boiling water deoxidises it, which is detrimental to taste.
But I'm pretty lucky; good teabags + delicious water + fairly good technique produces an outstanding cup. Brings a tear to one's eye.
Please explain why you think a built-in hot water dispenser running 24/7/365 will use LESS electricity than boiling water on your electric burner??? Or less than a electric water kettle?
As I've posted *many* times now, IMNSHO the best appliance for hot water in the kitchen is a Zojirushi hot water dispenser (http://bit.ly/7QfBKX ). We have a CD-LCC50, and we wouldn't part with it: Three stable temp settings, 5 liter capacity, cheaper than a built-in unit, uses little power, etc.
AND, you can easily turn it off (and stow it away) when you don't need hot water.
re: Joe Blowe
The Zojirushi hot water heater/dispensers are great...especially the 'new generation' VE hybrid ones which save up to 60% electricity compared to their 'normal' water heaters. This is because of the VE technology where you can press a button and a vacuum is turned on conserving the water temperature and switching the power off completely.
We own a CV-CSQ30 (UK model), US model is possibly a CV-DSC and comes in a range of sizes...like Joe above we wouldn't be without ours, hot water at the press of a button and doesn't cost too much to run either!
I agree with some of what's been said but...
Constant hot water heaters use considerably more electricity than an 1750 watt electric kettle. Rarely do the manufacturers advertise the electrical usage in 'constant temperature' mode. My advice would be to get an electric kettle. You can pick one up in Walmart for less than $30. It will boil two cups of tap water in 2 to 2-1/2 minutes. It takes that long to get your cups and press ready.
The Everpure model heats water to 190F which is not hot enough for black / orange pekoe tea. It is also too cool to pour through a stand alone filter for coffee but would be OK (ish) with a French press. As fauchon says water gets stale ( and 'de-oxygenated') This is not good for tea.
190 is about the same temperature that water boils at 8000ft. Black tea at that altitude is pretty disgusting. Coffee is not brilliant either. A cup of tea in an aircraft will convince you of this if you are not a skier. It is good for hot chocolate though.
Point-of-use heaters, however, are efficient. These are common in many parts of Europe. The 'good' ones need to be plumbed in and if they are electric will have a dedicated electrical ciruit that should be GFI protected. Note that a 120V POU device will have a slow flow rate.
51oz of water?! Do you actually drink 12 cups of coffee every morning? 8-))
Seriously though, I completely understand where you're coming from. I have a Bodum "Curl" electric kettle (1.5 liter) that I use for french press. But, I also have an extra spot in the sink to install a POU hot water spigot. I just haven't done it yet.
Advantages of the kettle:
Faster than the stove.
Fresher than POU hot water.
Hotter than POU hot water.
Small enough to store easily.
Disadvantages of the kettle:
Slower than POU hot water.
You have to store it someplace.
The only other caution I can think of is the "continuous flow" water temp on the POU unit. The Everpure units linked are only 80oz tanks. As you draw out your hot water it's being replaced with fresh cold water. It might be that only the first 12oz-20oz is rated at 190F. I don't know how much that'll cool down your total 51oz.
The biggest reason I haven't installed a POU hot water system yet is the water temp. 190F simply isn't enough for coffee. I live just north of Denver, so at our altitude (5,000+ ft) water boils at 205F. But that 15F difference is enough to make a huge difference in coffee flavor & brew-ready drinking temp. But, 190 is hot enough for my wife's tea & my daughter's hot chocolate. If I'm making my wife tea, I'll use the water dispensing option on my espresso maker, since that's right around the same temp as the POU unit.
You can get a higher temperature by boiling the water in a pressure cooker, add in the tea / coffee and sealing it up and heat it a little more. It takes a bit of trial and error to know how long to leave your particular PC on your particular range.
Still not the same though, but it works for Greek / Turkish 'espresso' coffee.
If it is just a small 80oz tank full of hot water, and that hot water is maintained, and reheated over time as water is drawn out or cools, its no different than a normal hot water heater. Tankless uses a gas burn to heat the water as it flows, getting it hot enough by the time it reaches the final piping.
But seriously, installing a mini tankless heater in a kitchen to heat 10-12 cups of water once/twice a day? Get an electric kettle.. you will never reach payback on the investment, and frankly, from an environmental standpoint, I suspect the electricity savings is a joke.. too many of these projects are about making the user feel like they are green, versus actually helping reduce the footprint. Save your money and do the half dozen things that REALLY might reduce your footprint - install rainwater cisterns, recyle grey water, add more insulation, seal your house better, stop eating industrially-raised meat, and plant a few trees..
How about something like this:
Not built in, but that can be a plus if you move home/don't like it etc. I didn't get one, as a full couple of quarts of boiling water from my electric kettle is often handy in cooking, and I don't have room for both machines.
Also your lower voltage in the US may reduce its speed, and it's a bit big if kitchen real estate is an issue.
re: Robin Joy
I was just gonna post the same thing!
The lower voltage in the states shouldn't reduce the time, but the temperature; the way I understand it to work is to heat/cool a coil which the water is pumped through, heating up as it moves through.
Unless it heats the coil up before pumping.
But I'd get a kettle; way more versatile, and you can use it for boiling water for the stove.
and I'd hate to know the limescale inside one of those tefal things given the surface area.