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Posted: 1/11/2006 12:25:22 PM EDT
I went the route looking for tankless, and found that the retrofit to my house would run as much as the unit. I could see spending 1500 or 2000 on a unit that might save me that in 10 years, but 3500- 4500 is right out.
So back to regular hot water heaters. Any one recommend one? Any to stay away from. I plan on sticking with natural gas like I have now. I think it is a 40gal at the moment, and it is in a closet, so there are space restrictions.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 12:46:47 PM EDT
What retrofit needs to be done for a tankless? I wanted to install 2 in the house we just built...one near the kitchen and bedrooms, and one near my bedroom. My builder nixed the idea, and now we just have a 50 gal LP heater. The price of LP has gone up so much, now I wish I had the tankless installed. I had 2 solar units in Arizona, and they were great. Cost on solar has gone way up too, but might be worth looking into, with a converntional unit as backup.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:15:46 PM EDT
Look into Marathon, don't know if they make a gas model but the electric models are extremely energy efficient for water heaters anyway.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:23:23 PM EDT
State are very good IMO.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:55:57 PM EDT
I'm no handyman so I took a class at a local college (Temple). The instructor recommended A O Smith water heaters as a good, durable value.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 2:29:27 PM EDT
Well, I did the research into the types of tankless. The Takagi makes bosch mid to high end. Paloma makes the rest. Bosch has some board problem that took out a couple people I read about. So they were out of hot water for 4 days. So I nixed those.
Rinnia(sp) and some n one were the others that looked good. So I found an installer for the rinnia one.
Basically I would need to run new gas line from where it tapped into the house. But that depended on the line I had to the hot water heater. Also the vent had to be some special vent piping that ran about 100 bucks a foot. Regardless, his ball part was 2500 - 4500 without looking. He said that was the average for the few he retroed. His company mainly did new home installs for these, so they didn't have that issue. Could be better, could be worse. I didn't want to pay 40 bucks to find out since the 2500 is out of my ball park anyway. Figure even with gas going up, worst we do for the hot water heater is like 50 or 60 a month. Best case we save half that. Makes it about 360 a year, so it takes 10 years best case to save our money. Worst case is like 25 percent. So it makes it 20 years. They aren't even rated that long. So say it falls in the middle to 15 years to save it back. Then it is time to get another. Not sure I see the benifits for a retro fit. New install, I could see it all the way.

Thanks for the other replys. I will do some research on those.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 2:31:01 PM EDT


Link Posted: 1/11/2006 4:07:49 PM EDT
I just replaced mine. After researching the costs, I still went with a conventional electric water heater. The savings comes when you use an Intermatic Timer. Ours is only on for about 5hrs per day. I've also boxed in and insulated around the tank.


www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=26399-000000251-WH40-6-250V&lpage=none
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 4:25:03 PM EDT
A.O. Smith has a good rep.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 5:13:52 PM EDT
check you electric company. Ours was damn near free through them since we were going electric
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 5:17:37 PM EDT
If your family is like mine then you need a 500 gallon hot water heater. Seriously though, how many in the house, do you need to fill any whirlpool tubs or other large things of that nature? I see you are in TX, so I don't imagine it gets all that cold there so a 40 gal may be adequate.

I am looking at putting in an 80 gal. Or possibly just putting in a tankless boost type heater on the tub. Wife always runs out of hot water trying to fill the thing.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 5:21:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By NickySantoro:
A.O. Smith has a good rep.



+1

The appliance store I work in sales them, guess who installs them?
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 5:24:00 PM EDT
I have a Kenmore, made by State.

Still reliable after 12 years.
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 5:51:37 AM EDT
There are 3 of us. But we don't use that much hot water. I planned on going with a 50 gal.
I don't plan on changing to electric. Gas is still way cheaper, and I would have to have a new circuit wired in for an electric one.

I could only find one place in dfw that was still in business that carried ao smith. Don't know if that is good or bad.

The two places I found with a state branded water heater were 100 bucks difference in price including install. I also didn't specify anything other than 50 gal gas heater, so I have to check back on what model they were planning on using as well.
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 5:56:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By brentwal:

Originally Posted By NickySantoro:
A.O. Smith has a good rep.



+1

The appliance store I work in sales them, guess who installs them?



+2
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 6:20:17 AM EDT
To quote George Carlin.."Why do we call them Hot Water Heaters? Hot water doesn't need to be heated"..
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 7:09:55 AM EDT
Have you tried insulating your existing unit better? I tried the usual water heater cover (basically a layer of paper-backed fiberglass insulation), with a layer of the Mylar bubblewrap type stuff you can get at any local Lowes. Reduced my propane bill by nearly half...

Link Posted: 1/13/2006 8:16:11 AM EDT
I am actually having other problems with the heater in the house now. It is 15 years old or so, and at the end of the hot water is putting out brownish water. Plus I see stuff settling on the bottom of the tub.
Most people are surprised it has lasted this long.
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