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Old 12-29-2009, 06:15 PM
551 posts, read 2,140,939 times
Reputation: 266


We are considering a tankless system to replace our water heater, which has a small leak and needs replacing.

Does anyone have experience with a specific plumber in this area for installing a tankless system?

Has anyone installed (or heard of this) a tankless system outdoors? One plumber has told us we don't have the right sort of ventilation for the tankless unit in our garage, where our tank currently is. I don't understand what the 'right' sort of ventilation is, anyway.

I'm hesitant to put it outdoors. It's counterintuitive to put your water heater outside; but even more, I think it will just be unattractive.

Thanks in advance for your advice.
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:13 PM
Location: Cary
240 posts, read 1,078,507 times
Reputation: 383
Default Tankless Water Heaters and why you need one-

Tankless water heaters are the best thing since duct tape!

All gas and propane water heaters (whether natural gas or propane) must be vented. Some tank style water heaters are vented by a flue straight up from the top of the unit. Others are "direct vent" and can be vented through a side wall with minimum clearances and flue requirements. There are tankless versions that can be installed inside your home (more cost due to venting and cutting a hole in the roof) or installed outside. Usually we install these units on the outside of the foundation wall near the gas meter to save on running a new or a longer gas line.

We've have a tankless unit in my personal home and really enjoy the savings and convenience. A tankless unit costs three times the cost of a traditional water heater. Most folks don't replace a water heater until it fails; so they are buying one-third the total cost of a tankless heater anyway.

With tankless, you never run out of hot water as long as you have a water supply and natural gas or propane. You do not heat water all day, you only pay to heat what you are actually using; and there is not a storage tank somewhere that will ultimately leak.

In my personal home we checked the energy costs and within four years saved enough to offset the additional two thirds the cost for the difference in equipment and installation. From now on, my family will ALWAYS have a tankless water heater.

There are many brands. We will only use Rinnai and have installed quite a few over the past few years as they have become more and more affordable. If you have a water heater in your attic it would be a great time to relocate it to avoid future problems.

There is no problem with installing a tankless unit on the outside of your home. They come in a weatherized metal cabinet that is actually quiet attractive. See Tankless Water Heater, Water Heater, Tankless Water Heaters Gas - Rinnai for photos of various installations.

I can't begin to tell you how pleased we are with our decision to install a tankless water heater. Having enjoyed this appliance for several years, I cannot imagine going back to a tank style water heater at any time for any reason. Just call me "Tankless Trent" 'cause I am a convert who will not go back to the "tank" side.
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Old 12-31-2009, 08:08 AM
63 posts, read 173,509 times
Reputation: 61
Default Tankless Systems

I agree fully with J.Trent Hicks. We completed a new custom home just 3 mos. ago and installed the Rinnai Tankless system. Our home is approx. 4200 s/f. and we have had no issues and our utility bills reflect it. We contracted with Pools Plumbing: Great customer service for all our plumbing needs. Here is their contact info:

Joseph Favara
Office Manager/Estimator
Poole's Plumbing, Inc.
3708-101 Conquest Drive
Garner, NC 27529
P 919-661-6334 919-661-6334 X204
F 919-661-6335
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Old 12-31-2009, 09:46 AM
Location: Cary, NC
116 posts, read 298,056 times
Reputation: 56
We moved into a home that had a tankless water heater installed on the side of the house. We think it is weird but after reading this post, it might have been necessary or saved the builder money as this was a model home.

It is not unsightly at all, so I would not worry about that.
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Old 12-31-2009, 02:19 PM
122 posts, read 402,478 times
Reputation: 102
Default Distance between the tank and the master bath

I agree with all of the advantages. We have the tankless located in the basement on the north side of our house; the master bath is on the south side. We have to run the shower about 3-4 minutes to get hot water. We have checked with several local plumbers who advise getting a "recirc pump", which is essentially a 5 gallon electric water heater with a pump attached. The device operates with an added return line, so that the main hot water line has hot water in it all the time. The result is instant hot water plus all the hot water you need.
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Old 01-01-2010, 09:15 AM
63 posts, read 173,509 times
Reputation: 61
Thanks for this information. We have a full basement that we will be completing in the future and may need to put this in use as well.
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Old 01-03-2010, 12:37 PM
23 posts, read 55,380 times
Reputation: 16
We love our tankless Rinnai! Go for it! I don't think it is any less attractive than, say, an A/C unit or a water/electric meter. If you really hate the look, I'm sure you could do some landscaping to hide it. I don't find ours unattractive at all. Frankly, it is better than the behemoth traditional water heaters!
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:34 PM
475 posts, read 990,018 times
Reputation: 386
Must be something in the air... just last night we had a leak in our water heater and now it started to leak gas....lovely! Soooo needless to say a plummer is coming by today to check it out. Our neighbors installed tankless as well and have been very happy with it. It does cost about 2k to install BUT 1 - it will last 30 years! and 2 - you now get a nice rebate from the federal government They used Cary Plumbing and were very happy with the whole experience.
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:53 PM
9,680 posts, read 24,875,564 times
Reputation: 4140
We had one 40 years ago in Long Island and it was great even back then.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:06 PM
Location: North Raleigh
578 posts, read 2,901,837 times
Reputation: 275
Someone told me the gas company actually sells, services, and installs tankless water heaters. Unsure on the brand. I'll be going tankless once my 10 year old 50 gallon monstrosity finally gives up the ghost.

Our neighbors have a tankless on the outside of their house. You notice it as it's a box on the side of the house. But it's not unsightly or unusual looking. They did say it takes a few minutes for hot water to get upstairs. But my master bath is on the furthest point of the house from our garage-installed heater and it takes the same, so that'd be no different regardless of the hot water heater type I'd think.
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