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Thread: Thinking of going tankless hot water

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  1. #1
    Plumber patrick88's Avatar
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    Default Thinking of going tankless hot water

    I have a 50 Gal. Elec. water heater. It is 14yrs old. I know as well as every other plumber on this forum that it is on its last legs. Ticking time bomb etc... I have no Nat Gas. I have no oil. So my question is should I with the great prices of everything goto a LP tankless water heater.
    I guess what I'm asking is it worth the money to get an LP tank for my house and install a tankless or just install a new elec water heater.

    I have 3 kids 2 are teens and my wife. 1 bathroom, dishwasher, and laundry.
    The tank less can be installed in a very central location right in the laundry room below the kitchen and bathroom. I think perfect spot for a tankless.
    I'm just starting to work with an old friend of mine to bring solar electric and hot water systems, wind turbines, Flex Fuel Boilers, batteries, hydroponic gardening, books, pellet grills and more. Also the parts for DIY installation.

  2. #2
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Talking do the math

    your electric water heater is 14 years old
    and still chugging along.....

    you can get another one for about $275? and it might last another 14 years...


    the propane tankless is a special bird,,,
    I have no idea what a good one would cost to accomidate the
    demand of a family that size..... $1500??
    Plus installlation.....

    or if it costs anything to get that big tank delivered
    into the back yard either...

    and will it out last the very simple to fix electric heater???

    ..

  3. #3
    Plumber patrick88's Avatar
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    Default

    I just replaced the elements about a month ago. I'm just thinking long term cost. I have a great need to replace the copper in the house. House built in 1986. Pin holes in the wonderful type m every now and then. I will be going to pex.

    I do agree the elec heaters are easy to fix etc... but the long term cost is what i'm thinking about.
    I'm just starting to work with an old friend of mine to bring solar electric and hot water systems, wind turbines, Flex Fuel Boilers, batteries, hydroponic gardening, books, pellet grills and more. Also the parts for DIY installation.

  4. #4
    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
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    Default

    You get some nice cool water in the winter huh?

  5. #5
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Talking cool water

    cold in-comming winter temps....

    that was something I forgot to mention....

    Is propane that much cheaper tha electricity ????

    If so, then Why not look into a a 50 gallon propane power vent???

    Then you get the lower cost of the propane..(I guess)

    I supppose it is dramatically cheaper than electricity
    in your area??...

    and you dont get all the little nasties that can
    crop up with the tankless>

  6. #6
    Master Plumber Dunbar Plumbing's Avatar
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    Exclamation

    I'm so damn burned out on these comparison discussions that I can't even participate.



    Oh *$@! I just did.



    Gotta remember that people use plumbing subconciously, like in their sleep. They pay no attention to it till it's inoperable, then the sky is falling, literally.


    You all would be surprised how often I'm called to work at a property, see leaking faucets or plumbing in disrepair and even though I mention it in casual approach, they raise their hands and say "don't bother, it's really no big deal."

    I can't argue with that, even though I see a problem. It's a hidden cost.


    Yesterday I replaced a cartridge in a 1400 series Delta and checked the pressure after I tighten up the system...

    110+ pounds of pressure. They know for a fact that when I last tested it, it was under 70 because there's a PRV on the main line, no expansion tank. Now that the PRV is blown, high water pressure, I fixed the leak and there's no issue with water waste.

    Now it's one big huge gamble to what goes next. I actually told them to run a faucet, let it leak overnight because the pressure will climb.

    I was naming off symptoms of high water pressure and of course the nodding heads confirming the issues tied right with the latest findings.

    There's only so much I can do to convince...
    Read what the end of this sentence means.

  7. #7
    Plumber patrick88's Avatar
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    Default

    I thought of the power vent choice. My house is on the small side and not a lot of room for a power vented.
    The elec. Is under my stairs. Moving the water heater to the laundry room would be a bad idea. Tankless would give me the option to mount on wall out of way.
    I'm just starting to work with an old friend of mine to bring solar electric and hot water systems, wind turbines, Flex Fuel Boilers, batteries, hydroponic gardening, books, pellet grills and more. Also the parts for DIY installation.

  8. #8
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Default

    This question comes up frequently, of course you will find opinions on both sides. However, the overwhelming consensus of opinion is that tankless, regardless of power source is not a wise choice. These things require mega amounts of power which most homes are not supplied with and therefore costs a considerable amount just to get started. If you live in where you have cold winters, you will find a shortage of hot water then. There is a great deal of upkeep required and qualified repair persons are sometimes very hard to find. They are not considered to be a good investment over the long haul. In my opinion, you would be better off with a new conventional heater.

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