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Pro and con for tankless water heater

A promoter's dream:
Spend $1000+ to save $1-8 a month
Maintenance heavy
Expensive parts
Expensive repairs
2012                                                                 See chart as pdf
Type of heater Saves energy Unlimited  hot water?  Easy to convert  Water pressure  Particulate in water Life Expectancy Can be integrated
with solar, geothermal, heat-pump or other energy source
 Temperature adjustment
Whole house tankless electric

No savings

Can cost more.

 Hard for electricity to heat water as water rushes past in pipe. See image

How to wire tankless electric
-Yes- When unit not undersized with optimal conditions

-Not consistant with saving energy or water

- No hot water in power outage
No, 
- Requires 90-120 Amps

- Typical home electric service is 150-200 Amps (check main breaker to see amps of  your service)
- Upgrade service panel to convert to tankless electric.

-Homeowner install not recommended
1/2-3/4 gal per minute water flow before heater turns on

Low pressure causes tankless to shut off elements
High tech sensors will clog and fail in 2 years without softener
Read .pdf

Succeptable to lime build-up.
De-lime each year
Claims of longer life not backed by warranty.

No warranty without plumber trained by specific manufacturer.

Require surge protector
No
-Cannot store heat from other source

Cannot heat and store water during off peak

-Always demand
fossil fuel
-Temperature adjustment with dip switches.
Read Page 4

Adjusting temperature can shut down elements if water cannot heat fast enough.
Whole house tankless gas
Saves $1-$8  per month
See hidden costs
-Yes- When unit not undersized with optimal conditions

-Not consistant with saving energy or water

- No hot water in power outage
No,
Requires 1-1/4" gas pipe
Requires air intake pipe
Requires stainless-steel flue
Requires 110V electric line 
Requires professional installation
Located farther from faucets

-Homeowner install not recommended
1/2-3/4 gal per minute water flow before heater turns on

Low pressure causes tankless to shut off burner
High tech sensors will clog and fail in 2 years without softener
Read .pdf

Succeptable to lime build-up.
De-lime each year

Claims of longer life not backed by warranty.

No warranty without plumber trained by specific manufacturer.

Not proteced by FVIR

Require surge protector
No
-Cannot store heat from other source

-Always demand
fossil fuel
-Temperature adjustment with dip switches.
Read Page 4

Adjusting temperature can shut down burner if air, fuel and vent don't match.
Regular electric water heater

  
You can save 4-9% operating cost by insulating tank
See how
Can heat and store water during off-peak

-Heats 21 Gal per hour
See chart

- Stored hot water available any time.
Regular electric water heater can be installed by homeowner Hot water available with any flow or pressure

Allows water conservation
Regular flushing maintains tank
See how

'Self-cleaning' tanks available

Corrosion-fighting anode rod inside each unit
6-12+ years
-No extended warranty without professional installation.

-Homeowner can diagnose and repair same day using locally-available interchangable parts
Yes

-With minor pipe changes, storage water heaters store heat gathered from other sources
See options
-Simple to adjust temperature. Read
Regular gas water heater
You can save 3-5% operating cost by lowering thermostat 10
See how
-Heats 41 Gal per hour
See chart

- Stored hot water available any time
Regular gas water heater can be installed by homeowner
How to install gas water heater
Hot water available with any flow or pressure

Allows water conservation
Regular flushing and clean burner maintains tank
See how

'Self-cleaning' tanks available

Corrosion-fighting anode rod inside each unit
6-12+ years
No extended warranty without professional installation.

Homeowner can usually diagnose and repair using locally available parts

Protected by FVIR
Yes

-With minor pipe changes, storage water heaters store heat gathered from other sources
See options
-Simple to adjust temperature. Read
See chart as pdf

compare tankless
> Tankless problems are difficult to diagnose
> Tankless cannot be repaired by homeowner
> Delays waiting for tankless manufacturer means homeowner has no hot water
clogged sensor
Pressure sensor fails after 2 years
Tankless cannot be exposed more than 11 grains hard water
Takagi TK1

Bosch 1600P
Water heater parts
Tankless are not made in your town and cannot be repaired by homeowner

Why spend a $1000 to save $1 - $8 a month?
Read Bradford White side-by-side test results
Read ConsumerReports.org side-by-side test results
Read Common problems with tankless water heaters
Read There are many things that can be done wrong in tankless installation
Read 9+ ways to save more with regular storage-type heater

How to install tank-type gas water heater
Tankless maintenance
Troubleshoot Rheem Tankless water heater
Troubleshoot Bosch Tankless water heater
Hidden cost of tankless


Repair tankless water heater 
I can fix it this weekend.
Bobby Dollar
Check it out
before you buy
Before buying a tankless:
1 Ask questions: tankless require maintenance and are expensive to operate
2. Read warranty instead of promo literature
3. Look at parts sheet and ask how expensive future problems will be
4. Tankless heaters require softener & filter: sediment and lime will clog parts
5. Check water pressure > low pressure will cause tankless to stop heating
6. Check community conservation plans > tankless heaters require high water flow
7. The promise of unlimited hot water is not consistent with energy savings
8. Add up BTUs of your gas appliances to see if gas meter is large enough
Read very long list of things to know before buying tankless
All tankless have circuit board
Gas and electric require surge protection
Intermatic IG1240RC3
IntermaticIG1240RC3 whole house surge protector
Manual
At Smarthome
How to wire whole-house surge protector
How to wire Tankless electric water heater
Abe says: do the math

Additional links

Electricity from pole to breaker box

See basic 120V and 240V water heater circuits

Compare all water heater timers
Do it yourself
Do it yourself water heater

How to twist wire

How to wire off-peak water heater
Cutler Hammer C25BUB230A
Contactors
Recirculation system
Hot water circulation system
Solar water heater
9+ ways to save with water heater

Motorized shut off valve

Anode rods

Maintain gas water heater
Paragon timers and manuals
Tork TU universal timer
Wire EH40 and WH40 timers
  
Power pack troublshoot  Tork timers and manuals
Tork TU universal timer
Gas and electric water heaters Support the economy:
Buy water heaters  from my associate links:

50 gallon Gas water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon gas water heaters at Amazon
50 gallon Electric water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon electric water heaters at Amazon
Hybrid / heat pump/ water heaters at Amazon

Resources:
How to install gas water heater
Troubleshoot gas water heater
Troubleshoot electric water heater
box timers Compare box timers
programmable timer Compare programmable timers
Countdown timers Compare countdown timers

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