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Thread: Bradford White or Rheem? EF & Warranty

  1. #1

    Smile Bradford White or Rheem? EF & Warranty

    This is my first post.

    First, thanks a lot for putting up this forum. After reading some of the posts and expert opinions, it looks to me that BW is top model to consider, followed by Rheem, A O Smith, GE etc. And yes, no to Whirlpool (I came very close to buying it when I saw the price in Lowes). I'm glad that I found this forum.

    So here is my dilemma. I'm replacing my 16 year old A O Smith with a 40 gallon heater. After reading few posts on this forum & consulting few plumbers, I have pretty much shortlisted Bradford White & Rheem. Based on the availability & installation price, it comes down to the following two models:

    Bradford White: M-I-40T6FBN Spec Sheet
    Rheem: RHG PRO40-40F Spec Sheet

    Both of the above models look good as far as the specs are concerned. The only major differences are:

    1. Energy Factor (EF)
    The BW model has an energy factor (EF) of 0.59 whereas the RHEEM has an EF of 0.62. Now, I get a rebate from XCEL Energy if the water heater has EF of 0.62 ($80), 0.65($120), 0.67($160). (For information on the rebate, click here). So in my case, I get another $80 saving if I go with Rheem.

    2. Warranty
    BW offers 6 year warranty whereas Rheem offers 8 year warranty.

    So if I go with Rheem, I get a better EF, a $80 rebate & an additional 2 year warranty. Is that worth enough to consider Rheem over BW?

    I would sincerely appreciate your responses.

    Thanks in advance
    Ash

  2. #2
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Default

    I don't think you will go wrong with either the Bradford White or the Rheem. Personally, I would take only the basic warranty on either heater. It is my opinion extended warranties are a rip off.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart View Post
    I don't think you will go wrong with either the Bradford White or the Rheem. Personally, I would take only the basic warranty on either heater. It is my opinion extended warranties are a rip off.
    Thanks Gary. The warranties offered are basic warranties. I agree with you - I'm not going to take any extended warranty.

  4. #4
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Talking Measure the rheem

    I would rather have the rheem with t he extra two years, and the 100 dollar rebate....

    but you will only save about 20 bucks a year with the
    energy star rateing... so that is a total joke to me...



    you need to be very sure that the Rheem will fit
    into the space you have because it is much rounder and fatter
    than the normal heater you presently have..


    one of my guys is out right now in the feild
    trying to fix a 4 month old whirlpool gas heater.



    http://www.weilhammerplumbing.com/products/

  5. #5
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Default Bradford White Energy Star

    Here is a link to the Bradford White Energy Star Heaters with 0.62 ratings.

    http://www.bradfordwhite.com/hb_energystar.asp


    Qualifying Models

    Model NumberGallon CapacityEnergy FactorFirst Hour RatingHeight to VentDiameterWeight
    Atmospheric Vent Models
    M4-403S*FBN(SX)
    40
    0.62
    72
    50"
    22"
    133lb.
    M4-40T*FBN(SX)
    40
    0.62
    75
    593/8"
    20"
    128lb.
    M4-503*FBN(SX)
    50
    0.62
    86
    595/8"

    22"
    151lb.
    Atmospheric Vent Ultra Low NOx Models
    U4-403S*FRN
    40
    0.62
    72
    50"
    22"
    143lb.
    U4-40T*FRN
    40
    0.62
    77
    593/8"

    20"
    137lb.
    U4-503*FRN
    50
    0.62
    90
    595/8"

    22"
    160lb.
    Power Vent Models
    M-1-TW-40S*FBN(SX)
    40
    0.63
    72
    561/2"

    20"
    135lb.
    M-1-TW-50S*FBN(SX)
    50
    0.63
    86
    573/8"

    22"
    160lb.
    M-1-TW-60T*FBN(SX)
    60
    0.62
    100
    68"
    22"
    193lb.
    M-2-TW-50T*FBN(SX)
    48
    0.66
    108
    657/8"

    22"
    188lb.
    M-2-TW-65T*FBN(SX)
    65
    0.66
    126
    693/4"

    24"
    222lb.
    Power Direct Vent Models
    PDX2-50T*FBN(SX)
    48
    0.62
    105
    68"
    22"
    303lb.
    Power Vent Combination System Models
    C-SW2-TW50T10FBN(SX)
    45
    0.66
    108
    657/8"

    22"
    243lb.
    C-DW2-TW50T10FBN(SX)
    45
    0.66
    108
    657/8"

    22"
    245lb.

    *Indicates either 6 or 10 year warranty.

  6. #6

    Default

    Thanks Terry. I tried three plumbing companies here in Denver, CO & all of them install the BW - MI40T6FBN model only which has the EF of 0.59.

    I guess, like Mark said, I may have to go with the Rheem if I'm getting a rebate+2 additional years of warranty. Not to mention, since the Rheem has a EF of 0.62, that is another saving of $20 per year. Interestingly, the total cost of installing the high EF Rheem is only $50 more than the BW. So if I count in the rebate, then going with Rheem might be a better deal.

  7. #7
    DIY Junior Member cstdenis's Avatar
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    Default

    Why does everyone on Amazon hate the Bradford White M-4-40T6FBN? I've been looking at the specs and it seems ok to me.
    Would appreciate advice.
    Thanks!

  8. #8
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    My wholesaler only stocks the M4 model BW heaters.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cstdenis View Post
    Why does everyone on Amazon hate the Bradford White M-4-40T6FBN? I've been looking at the specs and it seems ok to me.
    Would appreciate advice.
    Thanks!
    I didn't see all that many ratings of the BW tank series. The negatives that were there were complaints about controls (particularly the cost of repair) or very short service life before springing leaks--at least one person had gone through two of them in just a few years. Without a larger sample size its hard to make much of it (particularly since you aren't likely to hear from those that haven't failed.)

    My knock on BW is that it had to go through local plumbers to get it, and when I called dealers from BW's list, I didn't get any response. Then I extrapolated that to consider what my chances were of getting prompt service or warranty work and concluded "no, thanks!" It's not a consumer-friendly business model. Now if someone has a reliable plumber that installs these with out high markup/install cost, that would be a different matter. When it comes to such work, the local market is often the prime consideration.

    Rheem seems the more logical choice for getting the BW layout with less mark up and a wider array of installation/service options.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member cstdenis's Avatar
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    Thanks. Had one plumber recommend bw with good price (975 installed) another recommends rheem, but didn't break out costs. Wary of making wrong choice.

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