Hot Water LCAs - Gas fired vs Heat pump water heaters

Is anyone aware of a full LCA study comparing on demand/storage propane/natural gas hot water production vs heat pump water heaters, including ALL categories, including operational, over some time line - 10, 20 years? or know someone who does?? thanks!

to be clearer, including equipment, gas tanks/infrastructure and all associated components
Thanks again

Andy you are asking a pretty generalized question where there are a lot of variables that would drastically impact the calculation, like location and use type.

thanks Scott. I’m hoping to stumble on a general analysis. Can you recommend a simple calculator for the data inputs? I’ll look for product specific EPDs, then quantify CO2e for the rest of the components: piping; tanks; ducting; and yearly usage, based on my region. I’m working on a presentation for our local builder’s association to prove its not just first cost that is important, but the upfront equivalants and long term emissions on the operations side as well. dollar for dollar heat pumps and on demand tanks are reasonably close in $$/gallon output these days, so where is the incentive to decarbonize hot water besides ending useless wars over oil and the health and safety of close-to-refinery communities?


I don’t know of a simple calculator to compile inputs and outputs. You’d probably be best off making your own excel spreadsheet.

Use EPDs to calculate the embodied carbon of the equipment and distribution
Use yearly energy usage to calculate the operational carbon of the system per your egrid source emissions.
I’d look at maybe a 20 year life cycle?

Having on-site renewable probably tips the scale the most for an electrified system.

Also, if you are in a warm climate, you get the added benefit of “free cooling” from the heat pump if it is located within your thermal boundary.

thanks Scott, I appreciate the approach
agreed on renewables
I’ll dig in on it.