Re: Venting Hot Water Heater out of the Side of the House
Posted by Jim on September 17, 2003 at 17:19:06:
In response to Re: Venting Hot Water Heater out of the Side of the House
: I am not sure if you are using the proper teminology. A direct vent, by definition, is used when a furnace flue is not available and it has to be piped directly out the side wall. They always have a fan to induce the draft. It sounds like you have a conventional heater with the flue out the wall and those will always have combustion, or pilot outage, problems.

I beleive that is incorrect also. I think we can all agree on what "conventional" means. I have heard the term "Direct Vent" to mean it can be piped directly out the side wall, but it DOES NOT always have a fan to induce the draft. I'm not sure if it is a brand or a classification, but I have heard "Power Vent" or "Power Assist" to mean it is vented with the assistance of a fan.

I also thought it was against code to vent a conventional water heater directly through a side wall, but that may not be correct.

Where did all of this come from? A family member insisted on replacing a 20 year old "Direct Vent" water heater (no fan) with another "Direct Vent" (with no fan) because the power vent units make too much noise. He finally tracked down someone who still makes one (because everyone uses the power vent now). The only downside is the price is $450 plus a $100 venting kit on a 50 gal heater. By the way, we talked to a plumber who said the power vents are MUCH better now and the noise is negligable.


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