Replacement Water Heater

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Hexdump
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Replacement Water Heater

Post by Hexdump » Mon Mar 30, 2009 7:57 am

Does anyone have any experience with the new rage of "tankless" water heaters ? Part of the stimulus package is a tax credit for 30% of the cost.

My tank type is 16 years old and I need to replace it.

thanks,
hex

Valuethinker
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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:02 am

Hexdump wrote:Does anyone have any experience with the new rage of "tankless" water heaters ? Part of the stimulus package is a tax credit for 30% of the cost.

My tank type is 16 years old and I need to replace it.

thanks,
hex
We have a lot of home heating experts here ;-).

These work great in Europe, and have 90% energy conversion efficiency (energy in the gas to usable heat) if they are 'Energy Star'. That's real money that doesn't go up the chimney v. the 60% or so efficiency of the average 15 year old boiler.

HOWEVER

If I had habitually more than 2 people in my household, and more than a flat (apartment) or small house (say 3 bed), then I would be much more cautious. ITts easy to run beyond the capacity of the system to produce hot water.

In addition, they are more complex, and therefore less reliable. Hard to price that, but I have observed that.

An alternative, when you get a new system, might simply be to lag (insulate) the tank and pipes more fully-- that too can save a bundle especially if your tank is in a cold part of the house (like the cellar).

The best European brands are Valliant (I don't think sold in the USA) and Bosch (the car parts people)

Ron
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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by Ron » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:13 am

Valuethinker wrote:These work great in Europe, and have 90% energy conversion efficiency (energy in the gas to usable heat) if they are 'Energy Star'. That's real money that doesn't go up the chimney v. the 60% or so efficiency of the average 15 year old boiler.
However, in Europe the idea to conserve energy is much more proactive.

My flat in France had hallway lights that were turned off unless they sensed movement. My fridge was very small - to contain the few days of perishables since I shopped frequently.

Lifestyles are a bit different in the U.S. More is done at one time, and the idea of shopping for only a few days is not common (due to no fresh markets, outside of the central city areas).

Neither lifestyle is "superior"; it's just different :lol:

As for me? I like long showers (20-30 minutes) and I'm on my second 80-gal heater in the last 15 years (probably due to water quality). I'm older, paid my dues, and am willing to spend a few more $$$ for "luxury".

- Ron

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Hexdump
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Aren't the ones in Europe and Asia

Post by Hexdump » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:24 am

mostly ad hoc solutions. I didn't know how to phrase that. I meant as opposed to a "whole house" solution.

I seem to recall seeing in the European and Asian versions that they had one tank for the shower, one for the kitchen, etc.

I too have lived and worked in Europe and Asia, and I like having a small green grocer just down the street for fresh veggies.
Ditto with the butcher.

hex

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segfault
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Post by segfault » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:31 am

The gas tankless are supposed to be pretty good, but pricey.

I wouldn't bother with an electric tankless unless you like having your lights dim when you take a shower. These are also pricey, and will probably require an upgrade to your electric service (and will still dim your lights)...

You can prolong the life of a conventional tank-type water heater by flushing the tank out regularly and by replacing the anode rod when it's dissolved.

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Re: Aren't the ones in Europe and Asia

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:37 am

Hexdump wrote:mostly ad hoc solutions. I didn't know how to phrase that. I meant as opposed to a "whole house" solution.

I seem to recall seeing in the European and Asian versions that they had one tank for the shower, one for the kitchen, etc.

I too have lived and worked in Europe and Asia, and I like having a small green grocer just down the street for fresh veggies.
Ditto with the butcher.

hex
That may have been the case in the past.

These days, northern Europe, virtually all new installations on flats and small houses are probably tankless. One water heater for the whole installation, with 'on demand' circuitry. This I am thinking UK-France-Netherlands-Germany-Austria-Switzerland. Probably also true of northern Italy (not sure).

UK has a systemic problem due to water pressure (our pipes are so old-- generally cast iron, that generally they can't take the pressure and you need a tank in the roof to hold cold water). But everywhere else I believe.

Valuethinker
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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:43 am

Ron wrote:
Valuethinker wrote:These work great in Europe, and have 90% energy conversion efficiency (energy in the gas to usable heat) if they are 'Energy Star'. That's real money that doesn't go up the chimney v. the 60% or so efficiency of the average 15 year old boiler.
However, in Europe the idea to conserve energy is much more proactive.

My flat in France had hallway lights that were turned off unless they sensed movement. My fridge was very small - to contain the few days of perishables since I shopped frequently.

Lifestyles are a bit different in the U.S. More is done at one time, and the idea of shopping for only a few days is not common (due to no fresh markets, outside of the central city areas).

Neither lifestyle is "superior"; it's just different :lol:

As for me? I like long showers (20-30 minutes) and I'm on my second 80-gal heater in the last 15 years (probably due to water quality). I'm older, paid my dues, and am willing to spend a few more $$$ for "luxury".

- Ron
I've never seen a 'motion sensor' light except in a corporate bathroom so that is interesting (talking France, Germany UK here).

I have seen timer switches and agree they are pretty standard in French hotels and apartments (in the shared corridors and staircases).

Also of course in 100% European hotels you put the roomcard in a slot, and that turns on the lights circuit. It cuts out when you go out with your roomcard (after a certan number of seconds delay).

On the hot water point, an 'on demand' provides enough hot water for a 20 minute shower (or however long you want it), it's just when 1 shower is going, and someone is doing the cooking, and someone else is running hot water, then it cannot usually handle it.

Fridge size I think it is partly due to kitchen size: the UK is like the US, we go to the supermarket once a week. (main difference is that internet groceries are now very big here, I think because the route density is much higher so delivery is economic). But again many people I know do also have a separate freezer.

I think from the OP point of view, the issue is:

- estimated savings vs. an equivalent (Energy Star) conventional boiler

- price of gas in locality

If OP uses bottled gas then this would be a no brainer I expect, given the cost.

If OP heats with electricity then there are wattage issues. A Ground Source Heat Pump (geothermal) is actually the ideal source for hot water (it tends to not be hot enough for heating, unless underfloor) for bathing and cooking purposes.

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dm200
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Post by dm200 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 9:09 am

No first hand experience, but if/when we need to upgrade bathrooms, I will consider a tankless water heater.

Tankless water heaters save on water, especially if the distance from the water heater to the sink is quite a distance (say basement to second floor). You have to run a fair amount of water before it gets warm.

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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by sgr000 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 9:34 am

Valuethinker wrote:I've never seen a 'motion sensor' light except in a corporate bathroom so that is interesting (talking France, Germany UK here).
My entire US workplace, except for the laboratories, is on motion-sensor lighting. (But then, it's a French company. :))

Mostly, we like it. The building is LEED certified for energy conservation, water conservation, anti-pollution equipment, and so on. Every once in a while, the lights go off in the cubicle areas because everybody's sitting so still, staring intently at screens. Then somebody pops up, waves arms, and the lights come back on. It's funny the first time. Less so, the hundredth time.

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Post by GeekedOut » Mon Mar 30, 2009 9:50 am

Leviton makes a few motion sensors for indoor applications.

http://www.amazon.com/Leviton-IPP15-1LW ... 266&sr=8-1

But the issue with these is that you can't use them with CFLs. They utilize a magnetic ballast instead of the electronic version with newer CFLs.

As far as Tankless heaters, I've seen a few conversations in the short time I've been perusing these boards. I've been advised to avoid Bosch in the US, and Stiebel Eltron has been recommended to me.

I have no experience with residential tankless heaters, but I've showered in a gym that utilizes em. There is no shortage of hot water there. It works by heating a stream of water, so instead of using up a volume of hot water, as in a standard tank, you have a constant stream at a constant temperature. Now, if you use more gallons per minute than the unit can handle, it won't heat well.

Alternatively, you could hook them in series as most come with a built in thermostat, so downstream heaters will only heat the extra few degrees needed, or you could have small units at heavy usage areas, like underneath a sink. Most dishwashers and most washers have their own water heaters already built in, and so feeding hot water to them just wastes energy.

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Post by DSInvestor » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:08 am

dm200 wrote:No first hand experience, but if/when we need to upgrade bathrooms, I will consider a tankless water heater.

Tankless water heaters save on water, especially if the distance from the water heater to the sink is quite a distance (say basement to second floor). You have to run a fair amount of water before it gets warm.
Unless the tankless heater is installed at a new location closer to where the water is used, I believe the amt of water wasted while waiting for hot water is the same (i.e. volume of water between the pipes and the shower).

One of the things I notice in Vancouver, Canada is that the cold water is very very cold even in the summer time. In the winter time, the cold water is about 3 C or 37F. The hot water tank doesn't seem to provide as much hot water as expected because as we use hot water, the heater is being replenished with very very cold water which tends to bring down the avg temperature of the entire tank of water. Tankless heaters, assuming they can heat up water from 37F to 125F fast enough, will solve that problem and should be able to fill up a bath tub quite easily.

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dm200
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Post by dm200 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:16 am

DSInvestor wrote:
dm200 wrote:No first hand experience, but if/when we need to upgrade bathrooms, I will consider a tankless water heater.

Tankless water heaters save on water, especially if the distance from the water heater to the sink is quite a distance (say basement to second floor). You have to run a fair amount of water before it gets warm.
Unless the tankless heater is installed at a new location closer to where the water is used, I believe the amt of water wasted while waiting for hot water is the same (i.e. volume of water between the pipes and the shower).

One of the things I notice in Vancouver, Canada is that the cold water is very very cold even in the summer time. In the winter time, the cold water is about 3 C or 37F. The hot water tank doesn't seem to provide as much hot water as expected because as we use hot water, the heater is being replenished with very very cold water which tends to bring down the avg temperature of the entire tank of water. Tankless heaters, assuming they can heat up water from 37F to 125F fast enough, will solve that problem and should be able to fill up a bath tub quite easily.
I thought that the tankless heaters were normally installed very close to the place of use, which is one of the big benefits of such heaters.

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Post by djorg » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:27 am

We needed to replace our water heater in January. After considering a tankless, we went with another tank one. Why?

1) Increased cost of the tankless model.
2) Increased cost of installation versus tank model. In fact my semi-handy DH was able to install the tank one himseslf.
3) No resale value and not enough time to recoup potential costs. Upon discussion, we agreed nobody chooses whether to buy a house based on utility features like a water heater. Plus, we don't expect to be in this house more than another 5 years, meaning we wouldn't even expect to make up the cost with the utility bill savings.

And, I think we are seeing a significant increase in energy efficiency even with a tank model - just in the nature of upgrading to a water heater about 20 years newer.

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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by ualdriver » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:41 am

Hexdump wrote:Does anyone have any experience with the new rage of "tankless" water heaters ? Part of the stimulus package is a tax credit for 30% of the cost.

My tank type is 16 years old and I need to replace it.

thanks,
hex
http://www.paragoninspects.com/tankless ... l-faq.html

check out that thread for some interesting general information.

Also, I would suggest http://forum.doityourself.com/

Do a search on "tankless" on that forum and you'll come up with tons of threads on the subject. There are lots of pros on that forum that will be able to help you with your specific situation as well. I've looked at tankless myself, but the consensus seems to be more negative than positive for various reasons.

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Post by DSInvestor » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:50 am

dm200 wrote:
DSInvestor wrote:
dm200 wrote:No first hand experience, but if/when we need to upgrade bathrooms, I will consider a tankless water heater.

Tankless water heaters save on water, especially if the distance from the water heater to the sink is quite a distance (say basement to second floor). You have to run a fair amount of water before it gets warm.
Unless the tankless heater is installed at a new location closer to where the water is used, I believe the amt of water wasted while waiting for hot water is the same (i.e. volume of water between the pipes and the shower).

One of the things I notice in Vancouver, Canada is that the cold water is very very cold even in the summer time. In the winter time, the cold water is about 3 C or 37F. The hot water tank doesn't seem to provide as much hot water as expected because as we use hot water, the heater is being replenished with very very cold water which tends to bring down the avg temperature of the entire tank of water. Tankless heaters, assuming they can heat up water from 37F to 125F fast enough, will solve that problem and should be able to fill up a bath tub quite easily.
I thought that the tankless heaters were normally installed very close to the place of use, which is one of the big benefits of such heaters.
I think both types of heaters will amt of reduce wasted water if they are located closer to the place of use. Three are some smaller tankless systems that may be used as you suggest, but I think the bigger ones that can supply the entire house may be installed close to the old heater. Perhaps this saves in installation because water pipes don't need to be redone as much. However, I think the gas lines and vents may need to be upgraded for a tankless heater.

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Kind of related topic

Post by flossy21 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 11:13 am

If you find yourself wasting a lot of water waiting for the "hot" water to arrive at your spigot in your home there is a good solution. I remodeled our master bath about a year ago and installed a recirculation pump called a Chili Pepper under the sink in the master bath. The master bath is the farthest room from our garage which is where the water heater is located so we normally ran water down the drain for 30-45 seconds waiting for hot water to arrive. The Chili Pepper is basically a pump that is operated on a switch which connects the hot and cold side of the lines in the house. When I press the button in the morning the pump runs and pulls hot water up from the tank and sends cold water back down so there is no wasted water. When the hot water arrives there is a sensor in the Chili Pepper that turns off the pump.

Best of all our local municipaility offered a $100 rebate if you install one of these. Total cost before rebate was about $225.00. I installed it myself.

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/

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Re: Kind of related topic

Post by DSInvestor » Mon Mar 30, 2009 11:38 am

flossy21 wrote:If you find yourself wasting a lot of water waiting for the "hot" water to arrive at your spigot in your home there is a good solution. I remodeled our master bath about a year ago and installed a recirculation pump called a Chili Pepper under the sink in the master bath. The master bath is the farthest room from our garage which is where the water heater is located so we normally ran water down the drain for 30-45 seconds waiting for hot water to arrive. The Chili Pepper is basically a pump that is operated on a switch which connects the hot and cold side of the lines in the house. When I press the button in the morning the pump runs and pulls hot water up from the tank and sends cold water back down so there is no wasted water. When the hot water arrives there is a sensor in the Chili Pepper that turns off the pump.

Best of all our local municipaility offered a $100 rebate if you install one of these. Total cost before rebate was about $225.00. I installed it myself.

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/
flossy, thanks for that tip. Will have to look into this.

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Post by boffalora » Mon Mar 30, 2009 5:50 pm

As mentioned already, flushing a conventional water heater annually (don't forget to flush the safety valve!) will increase its life. Additionally, newer tanks are of self-cleaning design (the fill pipe inside the tank is corkscrew-shaped, causing the water to stir in circular motion each time it fills, keeping any sediment in circulation to keep it flowing through the hot water pipes rather than collecting in the tank).

As for replacing the anode rod, it's a nice idea, but most tank heaters are placed in tight quarters such as a closet or in a basement. Once the tank is upright, there is insufficient room above to position a new anode rod vertically over the tank before inserting it.

If you live in a part of the country where there are no basements, consider where your present tank is located. If it is in a garage-accessible closet like mine, replacement with another tank is a relatively easy job, frequent inspection is convenient and annual draining with a garden hose is a quick task. Another tank has a clear edge over the expense of a tankless heater.

If on the other hand your tank is located in a drip pan in the attic, you may seriously want to consider replacement with a tankless heater just to avoid the possibility of a burst tank in the wrong place. I've had two neighbors suffer thousands of dollars worth of damage to sheetrock, carpets and hardwood floors as a result of a burst tank whose weakness was never detected. In each case the tank had not been drained in years and the safety valve, clogged with sediment, failed.

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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by tonythered » Mon Mar 30, 2009 5:54 pm

Hexdump wrote:Does anyone have any experience with the new rage of "tankless" water heaters ? Part of the stimulus package is a tax credit for 30% of the cost.

My tank type is 16 years old and I need to replace it.

thanks,
hex
I absolutely love mine. Fairly easy to self-install. I got a Paloma unit for the whole house. I can generally use 2 big "draws" simultaneously, but that's not an issue. Someone can be washing dishes while someone else takes a shower, no ill effects.

The only issue I had with it was due to the flow control on the shower head. Took me a while to figure it out, but when I first installed the unit, everything in the house worked great except the shower. The heater would turn itself off after 3-4m in the shower. I'd freeze, curse, run naked down the stairs, turn the unit back on, and get another 3-4m. Just as I warmed up, it would die again. After a good bit of googling, I found that the water flow restriction mechanism (basically, a piece of plastic with a hole in it) caused the water to flow so slowly that the unit would think it had already warmed up the water (backwash of the hot water, basically) and shut down. I took out the flow control and haven't had an issue since.

Definitely noticed a decrease in energy bills (gas unit, plugs in). Now I need to work on shorter showers for the water conservation...

They do have units that sit under the sink or tub for individual use.

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Re: Kind of related topic

Post by bdpb » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:44 pm

flossy21 wrote:If you find yourself wasting a lot of water waiting for the "hot" water to arrive at your spigot in your home there is a good solution. I remodeled our master bath about a year ago and installed a recirculation pump called a Chili Pepper under the sink in the master bath. The master bath is the farthest room from our garage which is where the water heater is located so we normally ran water down the drain for 30-45 seconds waiting for hot water to arrive. The Chili Pepper is basically a pump that is operated on a switch which connects the hot and cold side of the lines in the house. When I press the button in the morning the pump runs and pulls hot water up from the tank and sends cold water back down so there is no wasted water. When the hot water arrives there is a sensor in the Chili Pepper that turns off the pump.

Best of all our local municipaility offered a $100 rebate if you install one of these. Total cost before rebate was about $225.00. I installed it myself.

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/

http://www.chilipepperapp.com/
Awesome! I looked into this a few months back and was hoping I'd run
into someone who has actually used one.

Were there any local plumbing code issues when installing this?

Typically, we don't drink water out of the hot water tap because it's been
through the hot water heater. This pump puts water that's been through
the hot water heater back into your cold line where it might be used for
drinking water. Is there much to be concerned about this as a health
hazard?

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Post by DiscoBunny1979 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:52 pm

GeekedOut wrote:Leviton makes a few motion sensors for indoor applications.

http://www.amazon.com/Leviton-IPP15-1LW ... 266&sr=8-1

But the issue with these is that you can't use them with CFLs. They utilize a magnetic ballast instead of the electronic version with newer CFLs.
The other problem with the motion sensor lights or even the timers that are in the decora style to replace a switch is that they also do not do well in cold weather. I had a motion sensor light in the garage so that I didn't have to switch the light on every time I had to go through the door with my hands full of stuff. It worked great when temps were above freezing.

The same thing with the timers that replace the switch. they don't do well if the switch is located on an outside wall. The cool weather messes up the electronics.

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Post by magellan » Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:49 am

One detail that often gets glossed over is that the lifespan of a tankless heater can be dependent on the hardness or mineral content of your water. Well water is particularly susceptible to hardness depending on the area.

I had a tankless heater at a house on a well with reasonably hard water (high calcium and lime). A tankless hot water heating coil was integrated with the oil burner and at first it worked great. Unfortunately, after about 5 years the hot water flow was reduced to a trickle because the coil got "limed up" and clogged. It turns out that there's a chemical reaction that occurs when incoming cold water hits the hot copper pipe in the heater coil. Minerals in the water attach themselves to the inside of the coil and over time this builds up and reduces flow through the system.

The same deposits build up in the heating coil in a tank system, but since the water in the tank isn't flowing through a small pipe to get heated, the deposits on the heater coil just reduce the efficiency rather than reducing water pressure.

I did a quick google search and I noticed that tankless systems claim to be better than traditional water heaters at dealing with sediment because there's no water storage. My experience was different, and I saw the clogged heater coil first hand. Once I saw it I was surprised we got any hot water through it at all.

Of course, your mileage may vary and the incident I described happened over 15 years ago in a system integrated with an oil burner. I suspect that the water sitting idly in the coil while the burner is heating the house may get overheated, and that could make things worse in this type of system. Also, apparently some systems now come with a mechanism to flush the coil with vinegar periodically.

Anyhow, if you have hard water, you may want to investigate this issue further.

Jim

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flossy21
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To answer your question...

Post by flossy21 » Tue Mar 31, 2009 11:20 am

bdpd -- The question you asked never occurred to me regarding the Chili Pepper. I would encourage you to reach out to the manufactrer with that question. I do know of two other families locally who have installed these units and both are happy with the results. I know of no one who has gotten sick from drinking water. It seems to me that if clean water is coming into a sealed system then there is no chance of contamination.

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Post by BostonBoglehead » Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:13 pm

The best use of a tankless system I have seen is one that is connected to a woodburning stove or pellet stove. The pipe basically runs through the back of the stove and seemed to have limitless hots water. The inlaws have this system installed, so I was a little hesitant to run any stress tests, or they might have gotten suspicious what I was up to in the bathroom...

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Post by jegallup » Wed Apr 01, 2009 4:37 pm

We recently installed a Rinnai-brand gas-fired, exterior-mounted instantaneous hot water heater in our house in SoCal. It is supposedly capable of supporting use of three devices (e.g., shower, dishwasher, laundry) concurrently, but we haven't tried that yet. They like to be near the gas meter and the point where water service enters the house.

The new unit is about 24" h x 12" deep and 16" w and hangs on an exterior wall, so no vent stack is needed. It was purchased to replace an 80-gal unit that was taking up too much space. The old unit had a recirculating pump which did awful things--thermal siphoning hot water into cold taps, cost a fortune to run--so we didn't hook one up with the new install. Yes there's maybe a 45-second wait for hot water first thing in the morning.

For what it's worth, the install took 1 day and cost about $4,300 complete. The re-circ pump they proposed would've been another $1,300 or so. The plumber wanted to sell a whole-house water filter system as well, but we resisted. Coincidentally (!) we had no hot water two days later; a warranty call showed that a small nylon filter on the heater was clogged.

The manufacturer warrants the heat exchanger for 10 years; the plumber warrants the parts and installation for 5.

This just happened six days ago so there's no outcome yet on gas usage and long-term livability/durability.

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Post by lippy » Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:45 pm

Here is a link from a prior thread:
http://www.diehards.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12806

I’m in the same boat: my tank is 25 yo and ready. While I would like the thought of going tankless, here are the reasons’s I’ll be using the tank:
• Typically, the tankless system is mounted on the wall. My current tank is in the middle of an unfinished basement. 25’ to the nearest wall.
• Venting, again, is in the middle of the house. I would need to vent to an outside wall.
• Ditto gas line.
• Some of the tankless systems have problems overcoming the colder water in the northern climates, unless the unit has been oversized to compensate. I would then have to question the energy efficiency of that.
• Peace-of-mind: when we lose power the water heater has been used to heat a few rooms; aka steam (I’m on natural gas).

Regards,
Lippy

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Post by tjwolf » Wed Apr 01, 2009 7:52 pm

Installed a Bosh tank-less in son's house several years ago. Did the install, plumbing, ducting and gas lines ourselves. Not a big job, but need a permit and the final inspection by local authorities. Have (had) several problems.
* When using the system, as mentioned before, it takes a while to get the warm water to the user, and it needs a strong flow to start the heater system.
* The thermocouple and burner needs to be cleaned regularly which requires some dis-assembly of the covers.
* When using the fireplace in very cold periods (Minnesota), a back-draft is created in the vent pipes, which in turn will freeze the coils if left unused to long. A light bulb placed next to the coils "solved" the problem.
* The local Home Depot has quit selling the units, therefore any parts must come direct from the company. Read = delays and no hot water.

Son claims a good savings on the cost of energy. He needed a new water heater anyway, but I doubt that he has recovered the $ 900+ cost of the system. He can however, fill the hot tub w/o running out of water, something he could not do, before installation of the system.






















[/u]
Tom

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Tankless Water Heaters

Post by AlanK » Thu Apr 02, 2009 8:48 am

For what it's worth, Consumer Reports gives a thumbs down on tankless water heaters.

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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by indexfundfan » Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:49 pm

I had the Chilipepper pump installed in 2009 after reading this post.

29 months later, it has broken down. While it worked, it was great because I can get hot water without running cold water down the drain. I think I also got the hot water a little faster.

After doing a bit more research this time, I found that the pump in Chilipepper is rated for 500 hours. If you use it 5 times a day, each time 1 minute, it should last 16 years.

If my family use it four times as much, and it runs for twice as long each time (longer plumbing), it will easily cut down the expected run time to just 2 years.

Apparently, the motor in Chilipepper motor is never designed for longevity nor durability. The motor has brushes which is expected to wear out after 500 hours.

I am now considering whether to put another Chilipepper in or go with another system -- the Metlund D'mand pump, which seemed more durable and is made in USA. Does anyone experience the same with the Chilipepper pump? Anyone using the Metlund pump instead?

By the way, the Metlund pump is designed by the same inventors of Chilipepper.
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tadamsmar
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Re: Replacement Water Heater

Post by tadamsmar » Sat Dec 17, 2011 7:19 am

If you go for a more conventional tank water heater, a adding heat trap seems like a good idea:

http://www.energysavers.gov/your_home/w ... opic=13100

Perhaps some models have this built in?

If you wait till an emergency the installer probably won't be able to find one.

More ideas here:

http://www.energysavers.gov/your_home/w ... opic=13050

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