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Need a new water heater! Recommendations?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by piercedtiger, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. Apr 14, 2009 at 3:16 PM
    #1
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Posted here for a lack of a better place.

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a new water heater? I currently have an indirect one running off my oil burner. Damn thing is leaking, and it'll cost around $740 just for the heat exchanger/thermistor well assembly (it's leaking from the well).

    For that money I can buy an electric one and have money left over. I know it'll increase my electric bill, and maybe double it. My thought is I'll save money in the long run by not using oil by shutting off the thermostats once it can maintain 60F outside during the day. Normally I do this anyway, but the furnace still needed to run to heat the water. I know condensation on the oil burner is bad and can rot the cast iron parts, but we have a dehumidifier in the basement now to deal with that and other humidity problems.

    We have city water, but there's still a lot of sediment in it so I'm afraid to even think about an on-demand system. Also, out house is only 100A service and most of the ones I've seen require 200A. I might be able to get around that with smaller, at source ones, but with 3 sinks and 2 showers that could add up quick!

    Suggestions on make/model/store? I'm planning on an 80 gallon one FWIW. Thanks!
     
  2. Apr 14, 2009 at 6:45 PM
    #2
    Simon's Mom

    Simon's Mom Wag More Bark Less

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    What brand of indirect do you have now & how old?
    My Bradford White gas indirect water heater died this winter & had a ten year warranty. It happened to be 9 yrs old :woot:
    All I had to do is peel off the model/make/serial number sticker off the tank & it was replaced with a brand new one ($980). My plumbing/heating friend put it in for me. He also was the guy who told me about the warranty. Worth checking on maybe?
     
  3. Apr 14, 2009 at 7:03 PM
    #3
    JeffRock

    JeffRock Well-Known Member

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    I put in a tagaki tank less water heater back in January.
    Love the thing!
    Electric water heaters are expensive to run. but in your boiler situation it might work better. My cousin did that in his house. (New boiler, separate electric water heater.)

    they do make tank less water heaters for lp gas.

    I do know a guy who runs his hot water off the boiler in winter, And then runs it off an electric water heater in summer.. i don't know how, but he is a plumber..
     
  4. Apr 14, 2009 at 7:13 PM
    #4
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    It's an Amtrol WH-7L I think. Near as I can tell it might be 5-6 years old since it was installed around 3 years before we bought the house 2 years ago. We only know that as one of the Suburban Propane techs that came out for something remembered dragging it down our basement stairs. However, since we aren't the original owners the warranty is void. Or it was when I called. I assumed they'd want a proof of purchase of some sort and I didn't have that so I told them we weren't the ones that purchased it. I suppose I could try calling again and see if I can get it replaced under warranty if they don't need a sales reciept, but I've called 3 times and talked to 2 techs so I don't think they'd forget. Hell, one guy (Jeff) remembered talking to me several months ago about the problems I was having.

    At this point I'm planning on getting one from Lowes and just installing it myself with some help from my father in law. He's a general contractor that's installed a few of them, and I've damn-near rebuilt the heating system myself so I figure we can save money on the install. :laugh:

    Another indirect system would be nice IF we could get the wood furnace we want. Unfortunately that will cost around $8g's, and I don't know how to get a 2300lb furnace down a flight of stairs, through a door, and over to the chimney. If we could do that I could gather wood for almost free, and not worry about heat or hot water year around.
     
  5. Apr 14, 2009 at 7:23 PM
    #5
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    I looked into tankless systems at Lowes one day just to see the specs on the box, etc since I'd only ever seen them online. Something mentioned on the box, but not anywhere else told me I needed 200A service to the house. :( That right there turned me off because I can't afford to have an electrician come in and upgrade it just yet. I know I want to do it later, but right not it's not feasable. If I could get around that, and not worry about hard water deposits (or at least have an easy way of cleaning the system) I'd be all over one! :laugh:
     
  6. Apr 14, 2009 at 7:56 PM
    #6
    Sinister

    Sinister Well-Known Member

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    Bradford White.
     
  7. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:01 AM
    #7
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Any particular reason? I've never heard of them so I'm doing some research now.
     
  8. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:08 AM
    #8
    drifter379

    drifter379 CenTex Honky

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    I suggest looking int tankless water heaters again. I love mine. Maybe call a plumber and see how much you need to do in order to get it up and running.

    Instant endless hot water. Ill never go back.
     
  9. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:14 AM
    #9
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Well, i'd like to get it done this week as the other one is leaking 2-3 gallons a day. Unfortunately to do an on demand one I would need to upgrade the electrical in my house. So I'd need to call in an electrician before installing the water heater.

    Also, considering how much sediment there is I don't want to mess around with this again later on if it gets clogged. No one has been able to tell me how much of a problem that would be, or how easy it is to clean out.
     
  10. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:16 AM
    #10
    Simon's Mom

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    Hey Pt, thinking about your post on warranty, my bradford white was not purchased by me, it was in the house when I bought it.

    When I was initially having trouble with my furnance (overflow valve kicking on), it made a mess downstairs so I called the folks who had installed they system. They fixed a bunch of things $$, not the indirect water heater. Long story short, it flooded again. So then I called a very good friend (who owns a P/H business but not in my immediate area) told him my story & he said "its your water heater, what kind is it?" I said Bradford White. He told me about the warranty. I checked online the serial number & sure enough that is how found out, the other company did not say a thing. Bernie then told me what I had to do to get the replacement, all they needed was the sticker off the tank, no receipt. I went and picked it up at a wholesale supplier than he installed it for me.

    He swears by the brand & I guess I do to for the warranty was very good. The reason I didn't initially call him is the whole friend thing & his business being about 30 miles from my house. It all worked out in the end, no thanks to the first company original installer.

    I would definately check online your brand & see if the warranty is transferable off your existing tank, email the company if need be.
     
  11. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:19 AM
    #11
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    I actually spoke with a tech from the company yesterday and he said I was out of luck. I may just call Suburban Propane *shudder* today and see what they say since they installed it.
     
  12. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:23 AM
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    Simon's Mom

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    Oh that is a bummer, yeah the outfit that did the work here will not be coming back. Hope you the best on getting it worked out, like the idea of the outside wood system is sweet. Lots of folks out in the country have em here but as said, pricey....:(
     
  13. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:57 AM
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    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Just got off the phone with Suburban... The have no record of installing the system. :rolleyes: Then why is it 2 different techs remember installing it?! Fucking morons. I swear the sooner I can drop this company, the better.

    No, the wood furnace would be an INDOOR one. :D We can't have outdoor ones due to town ordinances, and the code enforcement guy mentioned rumors of NY banning them completely since they're considered incinerators. So I found a loophole: indoor wood furnace! :D

    One of these to be exact: http://www.greenwoodusa.com/greenwood-series-wood-furnace.php

    Now, if only we could get that setup....
     
  14. Apr 15, 2009 at 6:00 AM
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    hoosiertaco

    hoosiertaco Well-Known Member

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    http://www.taylorstove.net/
    I have a T-750. I heat 2300 sq. ft house, 900 sq. foot garage, and 560 sq. ft. of my barn. And all my hot water is basically heated free. No electricity used to get water to the shower/sinks etc. I'm on rural water though.
    I really like the warm heat, and ROI was approx. 6 years.

    Maybe not what your looking at, but just my two cents.

    edit: ignore my post, just seen your last post on no outdoor units, sorry.
     
  15. Apr 15, 2009 at 6:04 AM
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    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Yeah, I'd love to get one of those, but our town doesn't allow them. Next best thing is the one I posted above. Little bit more expensive, but more efficient, legal for us to own, and less work since I don't need to split the wood. :D

    I'm thinking I could do the electric heater now, and maybe do some sort of heat exchanger to preheat the incoming water using the wood burner if/when we get that.

    Edit:

    lol oh well.
     
  16. Apr 15, 2009 at 6:11 AM
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    Simon's Mom

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    Holy crap, the indoor one has to be heavy....bet whoever installs it will remember that :eek:

    The one HT has would be great outside my house.....the planes could land by the smoke signals....sure we have a city ordinance tho :p

    Vt is trying its best to restrict the use outdoor ones too...
     
  17. Apr 15, 2009 at 6:15 AM
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    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Yeah, the indoor one is around 2300lbs. Trying to figure out a way to lower it down the stairs and through the basement door. Then, I *think* we could slide it along the concrete floor to where it needs to go. Damnit, I'll figure out a way if we can get the $8 grand to buy it! :laugh:
     
  18. Apr 16, 2009 at 3:28 PM
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    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger [OP] Devout Atheist

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    Well looks like I'll be getting this one: http://www.eaglehardware.com/lowes/...=161857-135-EE3Z80HD055V&detail=cr&lpage=none

    Upside is my local Lowes has it for $599 so it's $168 less than the HD 12yr one, and the one at Lowes has a lifetime warranty.

    Also, I discovered today we already have 200A service so I don't need to do anything for that! So even if I don't need it now, we'll be all set when I want to run more power out to the barn and rewire that. :D I'm excited now. :laugh:
     
  19. Apr 16, 2009 at 5:34 PM
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    Janster

    Janster Old & Forgetful

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    Unfortunately....when your hot water heater dies, there's not much time you can take to research for a new one. :eek:

    Our house had a Bradford White 80 gallon since we moved in - we've been here about 12 years. It sprung a small leak over the winter.

    We ended up doing some quick research online and ended up buying a Sears 55 gallon (only two of us). I honestly don't know much about it...but it had good ratings & comments online. Crossing fingers!
     
  20. Apr 16, 2009 at 6:02 PM
    #20
    Sinister

    Sinister Well-Known Member

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    Sorry about the drive by response. The reason I was suggesting the BW was because thats what we install in our houses.

    On the sediment issue, I would suggest that you drain your tank once a year, and flush it out. Here in Vegas, we have some horrible water and that seems to extend the life and the efficeince of the WH.
     
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