Need a water heater recommendation

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dollarsaver
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Need a water heater recommendation

Post by dollarsaver » Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:08 pm

We live in New England and have our third leaking SuperStor Ultra indirect fired water heater model SSU-45. The previous two were warrantied by the company and had a plumber install. Just discovered a leak at the base of the water tank. We're so tired of doing this about every 3 years. Our water is well and quality is fine with no reason for the water to cause any problems.

At this point we don't even care about the warranty and would certainly entertain the idea of another brand. Does anyone know of any other brands or other ways to heat our water that would give us less problems. We have oil heat and the water heater has it's own zone.

John Z
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by John Z » Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:18 pm

We live in southern NH and have replaced a few water heaters over 30+ years. We get 3 quotes from quality plumbing companies and have them provide and install the water heater. Each has lasted approximately 10 years. Couple names that come to mind are State and AO Smith.

dollarsaver
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by dollarsaver » Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:27 pm

John Z wrote:We live in southern NH and have replaced a few water heaters over 30+ years. We get 3 quotes from quality plumbing companies and have them provide and install the water heater. Each has lasted approximately 10 years. Couple names that come to mind are State and AO Smith.
Are these electric hot water heaters you use? The Superstor had a lifetime replacement warranty that we used two times already and now the 3rd is leaking that we got in Oct 2014.

westie
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by westie » Fri Apr 28, 2017 9:05 pm

Moved my water heater to the garage after 12K insurance claim

gnujoe2001
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by gnujoe2001 » Fri Apr 28, 2017 9:43 pm

for gas, I'd suggest a Bradford White Defender. When I was looking years ago, they were the only model that could be brought back with a replacement part if the FVIR (anti explosion...) tripped. Many other models were either difficult to repair FVIR or the whole unit was wiped.

The bottom air intake of Whirlpool makes (Lowes) is relatively small and more prone to dust clogging. GE (Home Depot) are rebadged Rheems.

For electric, IIRC the Rheem Marathon (lifetime warranty) was also highly regarded, though I have no experience with them.

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just frank
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by just frank » Sat Apr 29, 2017 5:37 am

I used to be on an oil boiler, and figured out that the boiler had a huge standby loss, which was expensive in the summer. Like 200 gallons of oil over the summer without any hot water being counted.

Turns out most (>50%) of my summer air conditioning bill was the heat from the boiler. I thought it was weird that it could be 60° out, I could have the windows open, and the house would still be heating up.

Ugh.

I know an indirect is supposed to 'reduce' standby loss, but that only works if the boiler is a 'cold start'....so it goes cold between firings...and very few actually are (they need stainless steel heat exchangers, not cheaper cast iron).

Bottom line...those 'oil guys' love to sell you more hardware..more zones, more controllers, indirects, every time you have an issue...they say this new thing takes care of that. And as an engineer who has studied it...its all junk. OIl boilers are 50 year old, primitive technology that are HUGELY inefficient with a network of (in my area) border-line scammer techs that are soaking you for incompetent service and overpriced repairs.

I switched out my whole heating system and scrapped the boiler.

I switched to a Heat Pump Water Heater (HPWH), placed in my attached, tuck under, semi-conditioned garage. If you have a semi-conditioned basement where you can fit one, they are cheap to operate and you can shut down the boiler all summer.

If your oil boiler is conventional, and you run a dehumidifier in the basement in the summer, and AC upstairs, the savings for a HPWH would be HUGE, factoring in AC and dehumidifier savings, as well as saved oil.

John Z
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by John Z » Sat Apr 29, 2017 7:42 am

yorkpond wrote:
John Z wrote:We live in southern NH and have replaced a few water heaters over 30+ years. We get 3 quotes from quality plumbing companies and have them provide and install the water heater. Each has lasted approximately 10 years. Couple names that come to mind are State and AO Smith.
Are these electric hot water heaters you use? The Superstor had a lifetime replacement warranty that we used two times already and now the 3rd is leaking that we got in Oct 2014.
I've had both gas and electric since we've moved a couple of times. Yes, I forgot to add Bradford White. Most only give about a 6-7 year warranty, or if you have them add another anode you can get a 10 year warranty. But they usually last longer than the warranty but then you are on borrowed time.

brajalle
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by brajalle » Mon May 01, 2017 4:46 am

Rheem also makes Sears Kenmore Heat-Pump Water Heater line.

We like ours so far, with the utility rebate and the tax credit (plus some Sears savings), we ended up paying less than the cost of a new regular electric or gas. The thing has over 200% efficiency, and has the added side effect of helping cool our home year-round. We have a smart module, with a water sensor, so less worries about basement flooding while on vacation or at work. I guess it could give us extra grief in years ahead, but so far so good.

Chip
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by Chip » Mon May 01, 2017 6:09 am

John Z wrote:I've had both gas and electric since we've moved a couple of times. Yes, I forgot to add Bradford White. Most only give about a 6-7 year warranty, or if you have them add another anode you can get a 10 year warranty. But they usually last longer than the warranty but then you are on borrowed time.
As I'm sure you know, the anode can be replaced. I've done it. But it sure wasn't easy getting the old one out.

neilpilot
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Location: Memphis area

Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by neilpilot » Mon May 01, 2017 6:21 am

Had both gas water heaters replaced with Bradford White Defenders, 8 year warranty. After about 3 years Both heaters' Honeywell gas control valves failed. They were replaced under warranty but this does point to a design and/or quality control issue.

Swansea
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by Swansea » Mon May 01, 2017 6:52 am

I had a Ruud gas heater for 15 years. Just replaced it this year. There were no issues with it, I just figured it was time.
I have noted that the new Ruud heater requires a higher dial setting than the old one to heat as much water, so keep an eye on tank size.

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lthenderson
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Location: Iowa

Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by lthenderson » Mon May 01, 2017 8:27 am

I have always thought this should be obvious but whenever I tell people this suggestion, most haven't thought about it. My suggestion is to call up local plumbers and see what they recommend. They remove and install water heaters almost daily for decades at a time and have a really good sense of which ones stand up to conditions in your local area. I have done that twice now over all the years I've owned a house with a water heater and have always had them recommend a brand that has held up well. Brands and quality come and go and they have the most current knowledge on the subject versus me who last replaced one almost five years ago.

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runner9
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by runner9 » Mon May 01, 2017 8:57 am

Replaced an OH Smith after 21 years just because we thought it was time with another OH Smith a year ago.

protagonist
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by protagonist » Mon May 01, 2017 9:24 pm

I just replaced one (also New England) and paid what I consider usurious labor costs.

Afterwards I found out that the gas company will rent water heaters at very reasonable rates, and they will come out and install one right away at no cost. Once you have the rental you will have the option of purchasing it from them, thus avoiding the labor cost. Supposedly Columbia Gas, our local provider, will do so.

How well that would work out for you, I have no experience...but it might be worth a phone call to get details.

hightower
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Re: Need a water heater recommendation

Post by hightower » Mon May 01, 2017 9:42 pm

I installed a Rheem tankless gas water heater in our house a few years ago and it has so far been a flawless and awesome system to have. It saved us money on our gas bills for sure and we have an endless supply of very hot water now all winter long. I bought from home depot online. It has excellent reviews on consumer reports, that's why I went with it if I remember correctly.

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