In the middle of a biting winter season, you turn on your heater to provide warmth around your house. If you’re more into the antediluvian feel, you start up fire in your fireplace. In the morning when you wake up, the first thing you do in the kitchen is to boil water in your kettle for your coffee. And when you cook, you place your pan atop your microwave stove and plug your rice cooker into an electric socket. All these are illustrations of heating, the process of raising temperature with the aim for reaching a certain level of warmness or hotness for a specific purpose. Through the years, and under various discoveries and experiments, the heating process has evolved. It still continues to evolve today.
Tracing back to the ancient times, heat was usually viewed as relating to fire. However, today we know that fire is but a single medium upon which heat is affected. Other media such as solar, electric, steam and fuel have become very much prevalent. In this discussion, we will give more emphasis on how the heating system of water came to be; a history which is not really complex.
To raise the temperature of water, energy is needed, because energy, when expended, produces waste in the form of heat. Dating back to Ancient Romans, these people were able to build large baths with heated water. While this may not necessarily involve a heating system, this marked the start of water heating. It wasn't until many centuries later in 1868 when an English painter, Benjamin Waddy Maughan, invented the geyser. The heating system in a geyser involves letting cold water run through pipes which are being heated by hot gases from underneath the pipes. This invention inspired the birth of the common heater we now know today. Edmund Rudd remodeled Maugham’s ideas a few decades later in 1889 to include safety measures as the geyser was deemed dangerous in the absence of a vent. It is from these two prototypes of the water heater and the water heating system in general that modern heaters are based on.
Typical in these days, you are able to heat water via the storage model or tank type. This means water is being stored in a large container that will keep the water hot and ready for use at all times. This is where the different kinds of energy come at play. You can employ solar, electrical, geothermal or other forms of energy to consistently produce the heat needed to keep the water warm or hot. On the other hand, we also have the continuous or thankless type of heater. This does not involve storage of water for heating because water is instantly being heated as it passes through the heating device. The latter is usually deemed more energy-saving and less costly, but both hold their own unique attributes and uses. With this, the role of plumbing also comes into place. Plumbing actually plays a vital part in a water heating system – there’s no other way to distribute and deliver hot water to a building without the complex system of pipes.