Environmental performance evaluation of hot water supplying systems for domestic use

Luiz Alexandre Kulay, Rafael Selvaggio Viñas, Ivanildo Hespanhol


The consumption profile of Brazilian citizens is changing as alternatives are sought to reduce costs. A major focus of this change of attitude involves expenditures for electricity, particularly in relation to water heating systems. The manufacturers of these devices add value to their products beyond price. A usual strategy is the enhancement of the environmental performance of the product. This study compared four water heating systems: electric, gas, solar and hybrid, using an environmental perspective. The systems were operated under similar conditions. The analysis was conducted by using the Life Cycle Assessment technique, for the impact categories of Climate Change, Acidification, Eutrophication and Water, Metal and Fossil Resource depletion. The results indicated that the electric and hybrid systems are less harmful to the environment for all the impact categories under analysis. On the other hand, the gas system provided the worst performance of the group. The solar heating system was penalized due to its dependence on electricity to operate under the conditions in which the study was conducted.


energy consumption; heating water; LCA; environmental impacts

Revista Ambiente & Água. ISSN:1980-993X  DOI:10.4136/1980-993X



Filiada à ABEC: