Best Tankless Water Heater for Outdoor Shower

5 Best Tankless Water Heater for Outdoor Shower

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GASLAND BE158 1.58GPM 6L is the best tankless water heater for outdoor showers. It’s propane-driven and ultra-portable, that allows you to enjoy a hot water bath on the go.

The massive water flow rate will fulfill all your additional requirements like washing cars, showering pets, and everything else. The auto-ignition makes the operation entirely hassle-free.

Above all, it saves around 11% energy to support your pocket.

Taking an outdoor shower and listening to the birds could be a fabulous event unless you start dancing because of icy chilled water. Fortunately, a perfect propane tankless water heater can instantly handle the scenario.

But if the water heater doesn’t have some particular specification and can’t fulfill some uncompromisable outdoor criteria, every shower session may turn into a horror event.

Most of the time, the outdoor environment remains windy. So the water heater must require flameout protection to cooperate. Again, the highest hot water flow rate needs to fulfill the necessity of your whole family.

Additionally, a tankless propane water heater can’t work above a particular altitude. So, there is no way to miscalculate any of these matrices to pick out the perfect device. Let me provide you the entire guideline.

How To Choose Tankless Water Heater for Outdoor Shower?

Which Tankless water heater is best for outdoor shower?

Mechanism, Advantage, and Disadvantage of several tankless water heaters based on Fuel Type

Mostly 3-types of tankless water heater is available based on fuel type, and they are Propane, Natural Gas and Electric.

All of them have particular demands and fields of use. I will describe them specifically so that you able to identify which one is suitable for your purpose.

Summary: A propane tankless water heater is best for outdoor use in camping. The natural gas water heater is excellent for household gardens and yard uses. The electric tankless water heater would be suitable for outdoor in the garage or construction sides. 

Propane:  Portability is the primary specialty of a propane tankless water heater. Despite being small in size, these heaters can produce massive heat. Cause the propane (C3H8) has 3-carbon molecules, producing 3X more energy than methane, known as natural gas. 

But propane is comparatively expensive. Generally, the hourly cost to run a propane tankless water heater remains ~ $3.00 or nearby. Although, the latest devices have some advanced energy-saving technology to reduce it.

Inside the propane tankless water heater, water flows through a high tempered metallic heat exchanger. The gas burner nozzle remains just under that exchanger. 

A sensor can detect the water flow rate and pass the signal to a battery-powered ignitor, which exists beside the burner’s nozzle. Once you turn ON the gas line and start water flow, the fire is automatically set on the burner. Then the heat exchanger starts getting hot.

While passing through the heat exchanger, the water absorbs the heat and gets released through the outlet.

Again the burner will be turned OFF automatically when you stop the water flow. The thermal regulator increase or decrease the flame to control water temperature.

Natural Gas: A water heater that runs on natural gas is very similar to a propane water heater. Only their fuels are different. Even the entire mechanism is the same.

Natural gas heaters are gigantic. They are mainly used for household uses to supply hot water for the entire family. I should not encourage you to choose a natural gas heater for outdoor showers, specifically in the campaign.

But if you need a permanent hot water line in your yard or garden to shower your horse, pets, or for ownself to enjoy a shower in nature, then nothing can beat a natural gas heater to fulfill all your purposes.

Natural gas is mainly methane (CH4) and a mixture of other large alkenes. Mostly they are distributed through the pipeline and rarely available in the gas cylinder. 

Per gallon price of natural gas is significantly lower than propane. But the natural gas heater’s operation cost is very much similar to propane.

Cause natural gas contains one carbon molecules (CH4). As a result, it produces 3X less heat energy than propane. So the natural gas heater requires more fuel to increase the water temperature at your desired level.

Electric Tankless Water Heaters:  These are the most popular tankless water heater all around the world. Currently, all geysers and available mini water heaters are being replaced by this. Electricity is less costly than any gasses, so this device runs by cents every hour.

Unfortunately, you won’t get an electric outlet in outdoor camping to install this type. But if you want to take an outdoor shower in your household garage, construction sides, or workshop, then this would be the perfect preference. 

An electric heating element transmits heat to the circulating water by an exchanger tube. The electric on-demand water heater has some disadvantages too. If you live in a coastal area, and if your water is a bit salty, then the heater will get damaged too early. 

Which one is efficient for outdoor shower, tankless or tanked?

Water absorbs heat energy enormously. 1 KG water consumes 1000 Jule of heat energy to increase its temperature by 1 degree. 

A tankless water heater increases water temperature on-demand. It doesn’t require increasing the whole tank of water temperature at once. 

So no energy is being wasted on unused waters in the tank of a random water heater. As a result, the tankless device is 3X more efficient than a tanked one.

Gas tankless water heaters are not useable over a particular altitude. Cause flame needs oxygen to stay alive. On the seashore level environment has a 20.9% oxygen level, which starts decreasing with increased height.

Does your propane tankless water heater work at high altitudes on outdoor camping?

The environment contains around 20.9% oxygen on the seashore level. If you start climbing high, the oxygen level starts decreasing.

We all know flame needs oxygen to remain alive. Gas tankless water heater requires fire to produce hot water. So the device consumes oxygen to stay functional.

If you go hiking and climb above 3000 feet, most probably your on-demand gas water heater won’t work. Cause there is a sensor called ODS inside the water heater. 

Once the oxygen level starts decreasing, the ODS passes a signal to the ignitor. Instantly the ignitor cut the flame out, and the water heater stops working.

Typically instant water heater works up to around 3500 feet altitude. Before you start your adventure, you must ensure the climbing ability of the heater. Otherways, you may fall into an uncomfortable situation.

How much water flow rate is sufficient for you?

It’s the essential fact that you need to concern about. Tankless water heater produces hot water on-demand. So it has some barriers to the amount of water flow.  

Standard sized tankless propane heater can produce up to 1.32GPM/5Litre to 1.58GPM 6Litre water per minute, which might be sufficient for you and all your family members.

But if you require to wash your cars and shower your horse, pets, and everything else, you need to choose a heater with extended capacity.

If you need a very excessive water flow rate, you need to combine two water heaters. 

Does the propane tankless water heater can raise temperature according to requirement?

The highest point of water temperature that an on-demand heater can produce with the most increased water flow is its heating capacity.  

A standard instant gas water heater can reach the water temperature up to 160 degrees Fahrenheit, which is extremely hot. Some other devices don’t have that high capacity. Even some can hardly reach up to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Again, if you increase the water flow, this temperature starts decreasing and vice versa. Although at a low amount of water flow, you can reduce the temperature by regulating the burner.

You just need to ensure that the heating capacity is decent even though you don’t need that high temperature.

Minimum Water Flow Rate to Active the Ignition

The flame will damage the instant water heater if it remains ON without the water flow. So a sensor detects the water flow rate and controls the ignition to turn ON/OFF the flame according to necessity automatically.

For some instant water heaters, this minimum water rate to activate the ignitor is pretty high. You might not have that increased pressure on the water line on a camping session until installing the water tank above the RV or using a pressure pump.

So always try to pick a tankless water heater with low activating water pressure. A standard device offers 2.5 PSI minimum water pressure to be activated. 

Some on-demand water heater uses VALVE instead of the sensor. I should discourage you from picking them and go for a sensor.

Mountability Concerns!!! Suitable for your place?

One of the most asked questions about propane tankless water heater is, “Can I mount it horizentally on a flat space?” 

The answer is absolutely no; you can”t. All the heating elements are vertically placed inside a tankless water heater, including the burner and the heat exchanger.

The flame must go towards the upright position to touch the heat exchanger and make that heater functional.

If you mount the heater horizontally, your device’s 99% possibility won’t ignite and remain flameless. If the controlling sensor doesn’t work and the flame set inside the burner, your device will permanently get damaged.

So never try to mount these types of tankless water heater horizontally at all.

Long-Term Usability… Nobody Wants to replace so frequently.

How long should a tankless water heater last? According to several customer’s experiences, a standard water heater lasts for 5-7 years or more if you use them carefully.

But some essential specifications increase the longevity furthermore. So before choosing your device, you should check this list.

· The device should have a water pressure sensor to cut the ignitor in lack of water flow

· “Flameout Protection Sensor” to auto-ignite the burner if the flame goes off for heavy air.

· Overheating Protector unit to protect the burner and heat exchanger from excessive heat.

· Rust and saltproof heat exchanger to let the heater survive for long years in moisture and coastal area.

Assuring that your tankless water heater contains these features will extend the heater’s lifespan for a decade.

But several times, some small common defect occurs to the device. You can quickly solve them without a hassle, and you don’t need to be a handyman for that.

Let me discuss some common defects and their easiest solution.

Be aware of Some Possible Common Defects.

No appliance remains defectless throughout the whole lifespan. Users face some common defects with propane tankless water heater several times. Fortunately, you have the solution if you know what to do.

Ignition Failure:  Autoignition technology of an on-demand water heater is powered by battery cells. So if the battery becomes old or the battery compartment gets covered by rust due to excessive moisturizer, this occurrence might happen. 

So first, try replacing the battery cells. If it doesn’t get fixed, clean the battery compartment. 

If it still doesn’t be fixed, place the ignitor near the burner or replace it.

Flame Out:  If you operate the tankless water heater in an open environment, air may blow out the flame. Or if the water flow becomes too low, this can happen also.

Stop the water flow and turn it on again. It should be fixed instantly.

Water flow detector failure:  Tankless water heater needs a minimum amount of water flow to ignite the burner. But sometimes, the sensor fails to detect water flow, and the ignitor doesn’t work.

To resolve this issue, clean the input valve or change it. Then the heater will start working again.

5 Best Tankless Water Heater for Outdoor Shower

1. Best propane tankless water heater for outdoor shower – Gasland BE158

gasland be158

Water Flow Rate – 1.58 Gallon/Minute 

Warranty- 1 Year

Altitude Limit – 3300 Feet

If you are a camping enthusiast, you must feel how charming an outdoor shower could be with the whole family. Gasland can fulfill this desire impressively. 

It can flow sufficient water for a regular bath of 5 people with the powerful 41000 BTU/hr energy production capacity.

No matter if the environmental temperature falls below the freezing point. The anti-freezing technology of Gasland will suck all internal water out of the tube to prevent any icy blockage.

The water inlet valve automatically adjusts the pressure between 2.5 to 110 PSI, so the outlet water temperature always remains on point.

The strong wind of a camping area might cut the flame from the burner. In that case, the heater will take an automatic shutdown for safety. You may restart it as usual and enjoy the shower.

Never be afraid of sudden hot water shock!!! The heater will cut the gas line if the water temperature rises more than 167 degrees Fahrenheit.

One digital display shows the water temperature, which is not too fancy but okay.

My favorite Feature of GASLAND BE158!!!

The weather never remains the same. On the middle portion of Gasland BE158, you will find a regulator to adjust the burner with the environmental temperature. In winter settings, the whole burner will produce the flame. Alternatively, on summer setup, only half of the burner will remain active.

In this way, Gasland can save 11.5% energy comparing to others.

Things you do require for installation.

You need a 3/4″ GHT garden hose adapter to attach with water inlet.

We have used a 5 Ibs propane tank, but other sizes will be okay.

Additionally, you will require two fresh D cell batteries to operate the device.

You must have to mount this device vertically, and that is the only way to use this.

Some Important Tips

During operation, the top portion will be too hot. So never touch there. Try to mount the heater on a low windy area or behind a shed so that the wind can’t destroy the flame.

2. Best for Showering Pets – FORUEE 1.32GPM/5Litre

Foruee tankless water heater

Water Flow Rate – 1.32 GPM. 1.85 GPM & 2.64 GPM

Warranty – 1 Year

Altitude Limit – 5000+ feet (Field-Tested)

Besides the outdoor shower, sometimes we require additional warm water to clean our beloved pets, washing dishes, and so on. So we need a bit more warm water flow, and FORUEE propane outdoor tankless water heater solves all that issues.

You may pick any smaller to larger variant like 5, 7, and 10 Liter per minute according to your demand. All of them come in black and white colors.

The best fact I like about FORUEE is, all the elements come with packaging that you would require to install and operate this completely. So you would never need to rush to the hardware store.

FORUEE has a two-knob easy operation. One for flame control and the other for controlling water flow rate. The digital display is colorful and shows the water temperature and battery level brightly.

This outdoor water heater can support every single scenario on the go that you can imagine.

You may mount it on a beach bathing box, beside the RV/SUV or boats, with the portable hot water sink and everything else.

Additionally, it’s incredibly lightweight, so that you may take it while hunting or climbing on the mountain.

All the protection features are included, so you never need to worry about safety.

The device is made of food-grade material so that you may drink the hot water too. Additionally, there is overheating protection, anti-freezing technology, flameout protection, Oxygen Limit protection (ODS), and scientific surface design to avoid excessive body heating.

By using a 20 Ibs propane tank, you may take a shower with your family for the whole month.

Above all, it’s my personal preference as it comes with all kits for installation. It has a wide variant of different capacities and fantastic customer service, and the price is comparatively low.

3. Best Portable outdoor tankless water heater – Camplux 5L 1.32 GPM

Camplux 5L 1.32 GPM

Water Flow Rate – 5L/1.32 Gallon Per Minute

If you require warm water only for having an outdoor shower for you and small family members, then complex is the perfect solution. Cause due to its low capacity, the operation cost is very optimized.

1.32-gallon per min water flow is more than sufficient for having a shower. So while using this heater, you are not burning any excessive energy more than you require. As a result, a 20 lbs propane tank can operate for a couple of months.

This outdoor water heater can increase water temperature up to 46 degrees celsius, which is enormous. Additionally, it has an ODS sensor, anti-freezing technology, flame-out protection, and everything you will require.

There is no display to show the water temperature, which is disappointing. The showerhead and the pipe are plastic made, while most other brands have metallic parts. But I don’t think it’s that much problematic.

My Opinion: If you only require minimum uses, you should go for it to save operating costs at the end of the month. Otherways you should choose different ones as they are available with the same price range.

4. Best for RV Camping- CAMPWORD outdoor tankless water heater

Water flow Rate – 1.58 Gal/6L per minute

Warranty- 1 year

Altitude limit – 3300 Feet

Could you remember the Gasland outdoor propane heater that I have reviewed at the very first? CAMPWORD is the perfect alternative to that with a lower price tag.

Comparing to GASLAND, this outdoor water heater has every single feature with high build quality. The only difference between them is the showerhead, and the pipe is plastic build.

My experience says, for outdoor showers, plastic pipe and showerheads are better than metallic ones.

The water input valve automatically adjusts water flow between 2.5 to 110 PSI and 41000BTU/hr high heat production capacity can raise water temperature up to 75 degrees celsius!!!

Additionally, at the bottom panel CAMPWORD has integrated an electric switch for the ignitor lock. The electric ignitor won’t fire until you turn this ON.

With every safety precaution, CAMPWORD offers anti-freezing, ODS safety, Flameout safety, overheat protection, and everything you need.

CAMPWORD also contains the climate knob to set up the burner’s flame quantity to save operation cost up to 11.5%.

You can think of picking this if you won’t like metallic showerhead like me and save a few bugs.

5. Best Gigantic Solution – TCMT Outdoor Propane Heater

Water Flow Rate – 6L/8L/12L/18L per minute

You might require a massive warm water flow for additional activity with an outdoor shower like cleaning vehicles, bathing horses, pets, and cleaning cooking stuff on the go.

TCMC is one of the best propane tankless water heaters that are offering a massive water flow of 18L per minute. Although there are lower flow variants available, TCMC is exceptional for its gigantic solution.

The best fact I like about TCMC that they have optimized energy production in the next level. Despite being massive, the operational cost is not that much.

It can raise the water temperature to 45-degree Celsius, and very little water pressure is enough to activate the burner.

This device comes with a decent plastic showerhead, but I would become happier if the length were slightly more to shower my horse comfortably. You can replace it with a long one if you do require it.

The device has three separate controller knobs to adjust the flame, gas flow, and water flow. Also, the digital display is mindblowing and one of the best looking in the industry.

My Opinion: If you require this massive amount of water flow, this is the only device that can satisfy you. But if you do not need that much, you should choose a smaller variant. Cause due to its tremendous capacity, it consumes more gas than others.