Hot water tank help please - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hot water tank help please

My rental hot water tank( from Enercare) is 15 yrs old, and failing. I called Enercare, and they said they need to replace it. I said I am interested in Tankless, so they sent a tankless consultant to my house. My main reason for tankless is space. My furnace room is very small, and I put tools there. The tankless will certainly make it easier and tidier.
So the consultant came, gave me the price and details. My current water heater is 60 gal with high recovery rate. My house is 2000 sq ft and only myself and wife. We do not use hot water for clothes washing. Shower is one at a time, but one right after the other, usually in the morning, and dishwasher is always after 7pm.
So the consultant having given me all the details of the tankless, he suggested as an alternative to save space, that I install a 40 gal hot water heater and move it a bit closer to the furnace so as to give me more working space for my tools etc. The moving will cost me $200, and direct replacement of the 60 Gal will cost me nothing.
I have read all the pros and cons of tankless discussed in the tankless threads here, but they are a few years old.
Is 40 gal tank big enough for our use? He suggested for tankless, Rheem model DCRT95DVLN. Has technology improved in the past few years that tankless perform better now (compare to the negatives in the discussion threads here).

TIA

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 01:55 PM
 
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With respect, I suggest you also have to consider the next occupants of the space ie impact on resale price. 40 gal is probably OK for two as you describe, especially if you crank up the thermostat a bit beyond permitted level. I'll follow replies from others as I too am interested re tankless. Issue for me was the hydro supply needed.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 02:27 PM
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agree 40 Gal is probably fine, that is the size Rheem we have here with 3 people.
Can't you just go to the store, buy your own and replace it yourself?
That is what we do here... What is the rental story?

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 03:13 PM
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The best option is to cancel the current rental contract and get an independent contractor to install the new tank. You may need to pay a small fee to cancel the contract or return the water heater. Rentals typically cost about 3 times a self install and about twice an independent contractor install in the long run. I'd recommend natural gas if possible. Operating costs for NG water heaters are a fraction of electric. The same goes for furnaces.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 04:01 PM
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I agree. If you're planning to stay in the house for more than a couple of years, purchase a new tank, get it installed and use NG if possible. When we lived in Calgary, we used a 33 gal tank for the two of us, but with electricity, you may wish to buy larger. We have a timer on our electrical tank so that it only comes on during off-peak times and we installed a large tank to last us the day. The thermostat is set as low as recommended.

We could not install NG water tank in our home because there was no legal place to vent it, so we went with electric. We could install an high efficiency NG furnace and did, obviously. The venting specs were different at the time and may still be due to the way they are vented or designed (one positive, one not).

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-12, 05:00 PM
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There are basically 3 types of vents. Convection vent, pipe or chimney above the roof, is the least efficient but still used. Direct vent does not need a traditional chimney and draws air from outside. It has some restrictions as to placement. High efficiency has the fewest venting restrictions but tends to be a lot more expensive to purchase.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-14, 07:46 PM
 
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I love my tankless but get the biggest unit available and the preheat option if going this way...
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-14, 08:20 PM Thread Starter
 
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The tankless unit is this 9.5 gal/min 96% EF from Rheem:
https://www.rheem.com/product/profes...rtgh-95dvln-2/
I think this is the largest from Rheem
What is the preheat option? is it the recirculation motor?

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-14, 09:10 PM
 
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I'd go to one of the big box stores and purchase an atmospheric vent conventional NG water heater with a 9 year tank warranty. The ones that have the 12 year tank warranty have a power damper that needs 120VAC to operate and usually only come with a one year warranty on the electronics including power damper.

There is no saving going high efficiency when you consider the extra maintenance and repair costs for all the electronics.

We installed a 40 gal conventional tank with a 9 year warranty and said goodbye to the rental company. Never looked back.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-14, 09:36 PM
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I'd have to agree. The cost of the NG used with a conventional tank is less than the flat monthly billing fee for us. Paying a premium for high efficiency is going to save very little gas and the difference in the price of the tank alone would take many years to recover. Having to pay for electricity to operate the electronics would also negate some of the savings.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-16, 03:49 AM
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I find that a 40 gal tank is fine for the two of you as described above, but it won't necessarily save you some money when using them.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-17, 12:38 AM
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Last year, my hot water tank failed and had I replaced it with another tank, it would've been the 3rd time in 20 years in a new construction house. Plumbers were telling me the shelf life on the tanks these days is about 7 yrs, which was consistent with my experience. That's what got me looking into a tankless. The tradeoff in upfront costs was worth not having to keep replacing the tank every 7 yrs, deal with flooding, surprise ice cold showers when it failed, etc. I found Noritz had started promoting a 25 warranty a year or so prior and that really spoke to me. (Note: There is some fine print language to read carefully if that's something you want to look into. That being said, no other company appeared to come close to that and even if it doesn't last 25 years, the fact they are putting out a warranty like that suggests to me that it legitimately will last significantly longer than a hot water tank.)

It cost me $3k including installation. I was really pleased with how much unanticipated space it freed up since I don't have a basement for storage (to your point about space). I've had no issues with it at all and qualified for a rebate from my energy company. A couple other thoughts:

- I didn't think about what would happen if I lost electricity until after it was installed. Fortunately my subdivision rarely loses electricity even when everyone else seems to be losing electricity from storms or whatever. I haven't had to deal with that yet but I do have a generator in the garage that if I'm desperate enough I can run an extension cord to.

- I'm not sure why one of the posters said to get the biggest size you can. The beauty of the tankless water heaters is that you have a virtual endless supply of hot water so the guidance I had gotten when I purchased it was to get a small one unless there were multiple showers running concurrently (not my situation). That is when you would need increased capacity. For resale, I still went with a little bit larger size than what I needed. (Model 111)

- if you do go this route, check with the manufacturer for their rebates as well as Energy savings rebates offered by your gas and/or electric company.

- my one complaint is that it does take a little bit longer to get the hot water hot than having a hot water tank where it's instantly hot. For example, my shower is right above where the water heater is. When I take the first shower in the morning, I have to run it for about a minute for it to get hot. Previously it would have been hot in about 5 seconds (but of course there is an energy price to pay to ensure that water is hot all the time.)

- I'm a little skeptical about those who are skeptical about the savings not being there going with a tankless unit. I've never really paid attention to the cost because that wasn't what was driving me to make this change but given that the electric and gas companies are so big on giving rebates for these I would have to imagine that they've done the math and there is a quantifiable savings by switching.

- I'm a little hesitant to say 40 gallons would be enough for you because I had a 50 gallon tank and I was looking to increase the size before I went tankless. It does depend on how long your avg showers are but women tend to take longer showers and also like to occasionally indulge in a hot bath. Whenever I would take a hot bath, I ran out of hot water before it filled all the way. Also, teens are notorious for the long showers too. While you didn't mention kids, if you're thinking about resale, that is something to consider as well. However, if you plan on living in the house for 7 more years or more, you'll most likely have to replace the tank anyway!

Ultimately this decision really comes down to your individual needs and plans for the future but hopefully the combined feedback will better help inform your decision.

Good luck!

Note by 57 - Poster is in the US.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-17, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
 
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I am going to replace the water heater with the same size. The installer will move it to give me more room. Thanks for all the advice.

Yammy RXV2400 & CDC815, Celestion DL8 fr Mission 73Ci ctr Sansui rear Velodyne CHT8, Vaio TT180, [email protected]
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-18, 09:31 PM
 
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IloveCBET

A lengthy warranty is only as good as the resilience of the company. If the company ceases operation, a 25 year warranty is worthless. I discovered that with our gas fireplace.

While the integrity of the tank may last 25 years, what about the on board electronics? Are they covered for 25 years?

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 2020-01-19, 08:18 PM
 
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My tankless takes a long time (30 secs) to deliver hot water to the furthest reaches of the house. The new units have a design that will get hot water to the tap faster. Not sure what its called but my next unit will have that
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