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Old 01-13-2015, 06:48 PM
 
94 posts, read 90,329 times
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We need to replace two 50-gallon hot water tanks that are up in a 2nd story attic that is accessed by pull-down stairs. We have a recirculator as well as flood stop.

The quote given to me by the plumber was $2600, which includes the two tanks and installation plus a six-year warranty.

This amount sounds crazy-high to me, but I'm new to the whole tanks in the attic thing.

I'm in the West McKinney/East Frisco area and wanted to get a few more quotes. Does anyone have any recommendations? Thanks!
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:52 PM
 
Location: North Texas
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Sent you a private msg.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TGentry View Post
We need to replace two 50-gallon hot water tanks that are up in a 2nd story attic that is accessed by pull-down stairs. We have a recirculator as well as flood stop.

The quote given to me by the plumber was $2600, which includes the two tanks and installation plus a six-year warranty.

This amount sounds crazy-high to me, but I'm new to the whole tanks in the attic thing.

I'm in the West McKinney/East Frisco area and wanted to get a few more quotes. Does anyone have any recommendations? Thanks!
Likely that's about right.

The water heaters are each going to run $600/675. With two strong men removing the old and installing the new plus making sure each is to code and risking the plumber's insurance and $2MM bond that's pretty fair.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:59 PM
 
Location: Northeast
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That quote sounds pretty fair considering the tanks and other materials could price out easy at over 1400, never mind the work is being done in your attic which adds to the labor costs. I would ask about the quality of the tanks and if their energy
efficiency as if your going to have this done your better off to pay a few extra bucks for an efficient system that will save u money in the long term.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:59 PM
 
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Thanks for the replies. Yikes... I'm in the wrong line of work. For two guys and subtracting the price of the tanks, that equals $700 per guy for labor. Wonder how long it takes to install the two tanks. Seems like a lot of money, but I guess that's the free market system at work.
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:00 PM
 
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What questions do I ask to consider the energy efficiency? (They are gas tanks.)
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:10 PM
 
Location: North Texas
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Gas hot water heaters run from $300 to $1200, so $600-$700 apiece isn't outrageous. They'll slap a 15-20% markup on the tanks because they went to fetch them instead of you. Same deal for the parts. Let's say the parts are $50 per tank. That brings us to $1638 for 2 tanks & accessories plus a 17% markup.

That leaves a little less than $1k for labor (and possibly a permit). That's $240.50 per plumber per hour assuming two plumbers and a two hour job. It'll more likely take 4 hours (two tanks) so that's $120.25 per hour per plumber, most of which goes to overhead (insurance, trucks, advertising, office costs, payroll for other employees, etc.) The plumbers themselves will probably make $25/$35 an hour. Also remember that when they're driving from job to job, nobody's making any money.

I know a handyman whose hourly rate might make you think you're in the wrong line of work (his hourly is more than I make if you translated my salary to an hourly rate at 40 hrs/wk) but his actual net is much lower.

As for energy efficiency, insist on an Energy Star-rated tank.
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:13 PM
 
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I had two 50 gallon waters replaced a year ago via one of the big box home improvement retailers ( think orange). They contract it out to a local plumbing outfit. I also have existing hot water recuirc. Total out the door installed was around $1,900. Attic location.

The couple other quotes I got were both well over $2200.

Get a quote from the big box guys and see how they compare.
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:25 PM
 
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2URGSE, do you recall how long the warranty is for the tanks for the price you paid?
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:26 PM
 
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Oh the other thing is they may be quoting you for two of the newer more efficient tanks. Can't remember if it was Jan 1 or until old supplies run out. The days of having a pro do this for $900/950 per tank are pretty much over.
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