Ok suggestion received
If I ever write a manual, I will write 2, the second one for a second grade education.
I looked at all tankless models and the bottom line is this. Until an independent neutral party tests all units then you can't believe anything! It's just like politicians saying this and that. When you go to fact checker most of what they say is skewed. Noritz, Rinnai, Takagi, and Navien reps and salesmen are on here with one goal and that is to confuse and create doubt, and make their unit sound like the best.. Here is the 1 constant I have seen in tankless heaters. 90% of the issues are the result of improper heater sizing, improper gas line sizing (I met a plumber who didn't know what a manometer was) or improper installation. All units have training classes for installers so I would suggest going that route. I have put in all heaters and have had general issues with all of them. As for Navien I just started with these and did have to do a software upgrade on some units and older units I had I switched out the boards before I sold them because I heard they had issues with the first release. Anyway I guess I am a little more forgiving as I was defending Noritz and Takagi when they came out. Does anyone remember all of the issues we had with those? Anyway until someone like Consumer Reports or an independent testing facility tests ALL UNITS I take everything with a grain of salt.
that is the best approach with these tankless units..... it all should be taken with a grain of salt....
prople ahve been indoctrinated into thinking
this it the holy grail....and they must have one
I could not even convince a customer over the phone that they are probably going to burn their house down..... because they tied in their bosch unit into the existing flue off the furnace..
I dont know where my moral responsibility ends
you can tell them ,
but they just dont waant to hear you
let it burn down, I guess.... .
Well, after about a month of noritz installations I am happy to report, no callbacks, no start-up problems and no BS to deal with. Is noritz more money? yep, and worth every penny.
Sorry for the delayed responce to who asked what we were installing, it was rinnai, but started with navien because of the high eff. and the ease and flexiblity of pvc venting. noritz offers all this with MUCH better presure drops thru the heat exchanger, and just a better quality unit.
I think the average savings in a normal household tankless gas over tank is about $120 per year. While many are confused or misled about tankless savings, many buy tankless for other reasons.
It like the logic of buying a hybrid vehicle. You save gas, but the added cost of vehicle, life expectancy, higher service costs in some cases, along with the impending battery replacement and disposal costs, negate all that.
People still buy and drive them though, and like tankless wont go away and only grow in use and popularity.
For others it's just about saving space.
I've seen commercial food-prep installations where fuel savings was a primary driver though.
For me it was a cheaper/more efficient option than a cast-iron boiler. They're dynamically scalable to the anticipated load at the design phase, and using a reverse-indirect as a HW heater/buffer, can be designed to modulate much of the season on combined DHW + heat loads, at a fraction of the cost of a mod-con + indirect. The difference in fuel use between a mod-con + indirect vs. using a tankless for the radiation I have in place would be on the order of 50-100 therms/year, not more. Installing a drainwater heat recovery at the same time recovers a similar amount of heat for a fraction of the delta in price between a mod-con & tankless, and reduces the peak load from showering by ~25-35kbtu/h, and allows one to set the modulation point closer to the heat load, while still delivering pretty-much endless hot water in showering mode. (I don't have a spa to fill.)
With the indirect acting as buffer and keeping boiler loop flow under 2gpm it may even outlast a tankless used strictly for DHW, since it'll cycle an order of magnitude fewer times, and never short-cycle. (Lifetime TBD, but if it doesn't go more than 10 years, no BFD. But if it craps out in 5, I may do something else.)
When somebody comes out with a condensing boiler that modulates between 15-50KBTU/h for under a grand (or the subsidies for condensing units goes even through the roof) I'll think about it. In the meantime you can buy a stack of bottom-of-the-line Takagis for the current price of a 50-60KBTU mod-con. They don't have to last forever to be cost-effective.
Of course I coulda just went with a tank HW heater & heat exchanger combi with a 60K burner and saved something up front, but if the tankless gives me 10 years I've made back the difference on performance, even at a buck-a-therm-delivered. I'll know in a few years if I made the right gamble, but even if I lose, I won't have lost much.
Previously I'd lived 15+ years with a less efficient atmospheric-drafted tankless serving DHW loads only, which was perfect for our serial-showering/bathing needs- we never ran out. It's output was low enough that mid-winter laundry needed to be scheduled around bathing, but it wasn't a major inconvenience. I'm sure it paid for itself in fuel savings at least 1x over, but for us it was more about 3-4x serial showers/bathing than it was ever about fuel savings.
BTW: Battery replacement & maintenance issues on hybrid cars is much overstated- they tend to last WELL beyond the warranty period, and the batteries have significant scrap value- (there IS no disposal cost to the car owner.) The majority of Prius owners never replace the NiMh battery, many are retired after 200K miles with the original battery still working. Extreme cold weather areas have higher failure rates. Used-yet-functional Prius batteries can be had for under a grand on the secondary market, so if you're well past the warranty on your high-mileage vehicle you don't really HAVE to sink anything like the $3K dealer price of a brand new battery into a rolling wreck past it's prime. (Newer Li-ion technology is likely to have even lower failure rates though.) The life-cycle costs are still lower for a hybrid in an NPV financial analysis, (to be sure it DOES take awhile), but the added costs of hybrids do not in fact "...negate all that...", in the majority of cases so far.
Most of those are common misconceptions, at least if one is talking about the most common hybrid:It like the logic of buying a hybrid vehicle. You save gas, but the added cost of vehicle, life expectancy, higher service costs in some cases, along with the impending battery replacement and disposal costs, negate all that.
1. The added cost is pretty slim anymore if you are comparing to the same size/capacity options, and will be recouped if resold--the premium is still there.
2. Life expectancy is really not substantially different since components can be replaced, just as with other vehicles.
3. Service cost can actually be lower because of fewer brake jobs (regenerative braking means the original brakes tend to last extraordinarily long times.)
4. Hybrid component warranties (yes, including the battery) are 8 years, 100,000 miles in most areas, 10 years, 150,000 miles for CA and some other states. So if the pack goes prematurely, you are covered. The new battery pack lists for about $2,500 now if it fails out of warranty (and they can be found at a markdown from some Toyota parts dealers.) Compare this with the chances of an automatic transmission failure in the 100,000+ or 150,000+ mile range and make a guess as to which is a better financial bet.
5. There is no disposal cost of the battery. The nickel inside is valuable and Toyota offers $200 for the old ones.
I can not speak for those that live in the cold, but those that live in warmer climates, I say look into the unit that serves you best. Before I began installing them for customers, I installed one on my home and put it through the paces for a year. I installed a Noritz. Pros: Instant 30 - 40% drop on my gas bill with no notice of electrical increase, great longer showers and no waiting for the water to reheat due to previous use, indoor programmable thermostat with easy to follow error and info codes.
Cons: Annual service is best to maintain unit ( but it is simple to do yourself ), cold water sandwich, location can make installation costly, most installers don't let you know or include in their installation the service valves.
The unit I installed is now considered old. There are now even more efficient units and some of the older units have come down in price. The new Navien units are nice and solve part of the problems with internal buffering tanks to prevent "cold water sandwich" and a built in circ pump to eliminate additional installation charges. The down side is that some of the plastic parts fail soon after installation. Navien will quickly send out a replacement and pay the Navien tech to replace it. That part is not so bad. The only true negative I have for the unit is the noise made by the operation of the gas valve solenoid valve. This wont be a problem if the unit is not installed on a wall to a normally occupied room like a bed rom or family room.
In 36 years of working on tankless, I've seen them go from a campfire in a box to truly amazing marvels. In the last 10 years, it was Rinnai that put tankless on the map. Bosch limped along through CEC until Bosch bought and bit the hand that fed them. As I tell customers, if you love French cars, you'll love owning a Bosch because they are the most counter intuitive tankless o the market. Navien hit the market and as posted, running a sack race with Bosch in last place for tech support. I haven't had any problems with Navien but they are noisier than the others apart from what they claim. I had the city of San Jose, CA reject Navien's exterior Moose head venting configuration and was not pleased with support (severe lack of) regarding that project.. Rinnai's technical support has been consistently superior in every respect but like all technical support, it's only as valuable as the information giving. the tech isn't on scene and many times there are conditions you are not aware off; example a new installation in Morgan Hill, CA had an error code 12 after a few months of operation. The manometer showed 7" W.C and quickly dropped to below 3". I stated it again after 5 minutes and the same thing occured. My first thought, they have a quake safety valve and sure enough, one was at the meter close to the street, do the math. Problems aren't always in the box, most are outside of it.
Because you can hold a tool and have an opposable thumb doesn't mean either you are capable of working on tankless, it takes years and other skills like micro electronics, single and dual digital manometer, combustion gas analyzers, a variety of digital multi meters in your tool inventory and the background and experience to use them correctly is the difference between a happy customer and a bad rap for the industry.
If sized and applied correctly, tankless is clearly the better choice. If we are the last society addicted to tank culture, bigger is better, than plumbers not on board with tankless are going to be extinct in a few years.
The chances of tanks being extinct in a few years are nil. There are two primary reasons: 1. Massive installed tank user base, small tankless user base. Retrofits are an expensive PITA in many cases, so they are not going to happen. 2. The energy cost of storage is not nearly as great as suggested by the tankless folks.
Then there are other secondary reasons. Condensing storage over the next few years will bridge the efficiency gap for all but the condensing tankless. And they can acheive a high burn rate without the usability pitfalls of the tankless. There is a lot of room to maneuver for condensing storage designs.
Passive solar is another problem for the idea that storage will disappear. There will be a storage tank with passive solar. And if I was targeting energy efficiency in the South, I would start with passive solar, leapfrogging any fuel consumption tankless could accomplish. What it is paired to for supplemental heating is a smaller concern.
In 1976 few if any households had a computer, give tankless the same time frame. I started installing Paloma in the 70's along with Aqua Star before Bosch bought them. The industry has come a long ways since then.
At my primary wholesaler, Ferguson, tankless far out sell tanks. No other country in the world uses tank technology to the degree we do in the US.
As tankless becomes more widely accepted, tanks will go away like the 7 gpf wall mounted toilet tank of the 1920's, cast iron residential waste and threaded galvanized steel water pipe. All replaced with material easier to install and handle. They all had there time. It;s taken the unions in my area 10 years to accept PEX and some are still fighting it. They fought copper and ABS for decades.
Tankless outsell tanks?
That would be the only FEI branch in the world where that happens
Actually according to gas residential shipment reports tankless sales are about 12% of all gas residential water heaters in the US
This year a dip in sales is being experienced but also with tanks with an industry that is down almost 35% compared to 2008.