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Klayfish PowerDork
12/6/17 10:55 a.m.
Stanley said:

I read positive responses about tankless water heaters, but I still have a lot of questions and not understanding. Been thinking of installing a tankless water heater on a house that I just purchased in Mexico. I know they can be pricey. I looked at amazon and saw some that could probably be had for about $250-350 range, but don't know if they are any good. Anybody have one. This would be one that runs off propane gas. Wondered about brand name and what to look for and what is important. I looked at the specs at the ones on E-Bay, but I don't know if what they have is good or not.

I'm far from a home improvement guy...I don't even like changing light bulbs, so don't ask me any of the "how" it all works, but we have a tankless water heater.  I just went in the basement to see what it is.  It's this one... Rheem tankless .  We have a family of 5, and in the past have run into challenges with having enough hot water when everyone wanted to shower.  This thing is AWESOME!  In our master bath, we had a double shower installed...it's got full body showers on either side.  My wife and I can both use it with 109 degree water, AND one of the kids can go in their bathroom and take a hot shower without a problem.  We can run the dishwasher and shower and washing machine if we wanted.  We try not to put that much stress on it if we can avoid it, but it's nice to know we can if we need.  One of the best investments we made when having this house built.   Ours is natural gas, but I'm sure there's a comparable propane model.

EastCoastMojo Mod Squad
12/6/17 11:05 a.m.

Zombie thread, canoe deleted 

SVreX MegaDork
12/6/17 3:24 p.m.

My younger self just came back into my life and said something to me about another guy's underwear. surprise

frenchyd Dork
12/6/17 3:52 p.m.

In reply to SVreX :

i installed mine in my attic expecting to insulate and finish the attic.  That was more than 10 years ago.  Every year that is number one on the to do list and it always gets pushed down the line.  

As a result I have two big  (80 gallon& 65 gallon)electric water heaters that drive up my electric bill  now 12 years old!   

It takes a bit to get really hot water every place in the house with those too so once we do insulate the attic and can open it up it should work as normal ( maybe a bit faster because it’s right over the master bath) 


Stephanie_Owen New Spammer
1/18/20 1:48 a.m.

I just installed a condensing [canoe unit], thus far I'm extremely satisfied. My earlier [canoe] from 85 was on its way out, and I needed the space in the garage. 

[message edited for length, and content]

mad_machine MegaDork
1/18/20 9:32 p.m.

I will be going tankless this year. It will work well except for the kitchen which is on the opposite side of the house (lengthwise) from the heater. Even with a tanked heater, you are waiting 90 seconds (or more) for hot water there. To remedy this, a small instant hot electric water heater will go under the kitchen sink to jump start the hot water

docwyte UberDork
1/19/20 10:30 a.m.

I'm still interested in going tank less but the last quote I got (which was 12 years ago admittedly) was $4000 to do it.  That pays for a lot of traditional water heaters...

frenchyd PowerDork
1/19/20 4:36 p.m.

In reply to docwyte :

One of the advantages of DIY. Tankless wasn't that much more than a regular water heater. And it's mounted a little closer to the bathroom so hot water will be there quicker.  
Using modern PEX lines it's so easy to do plumbing. 

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/29/21 6:20 a.m.

Low end electric models don't work, even in a canoe. 

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/29/21 6:22 a.m.

...and why does my younger self keep coming back to me and talking to me about some other guy's underwear?  


GameboyRMH MegaDork
7/29/21 11:41 a.m.
SVreX (Forum Supporter) said:

Low end electric models don't work, even in a canoe. 

They take the water from "terrible icy cold" to "still pretty cold but somewhat survivable."

Also if you install one in a shower, you can put a toe on the drain for a morning wake-up coffee substitute!

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/29/21 12:26 p.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :


His question was about a whole house application with baths not close to the unit and low pressure and flow.

I don't think it will work at all.

But it doesn't really matter. He drives a canoe. 

RevRico UltimaDork
7/29/21 12:35 p.m.
SVreX (Forum Supporter) said:

Low end electric models don't work, even in a canoe. 

Not even for a single sink?

I'm not seeing any mini tanks that last more than a year, so I've been thinking of point of use for a lone sink that sees use maybe once a week.

7/29/21 12:44 p.m.

On thing I've noticed that never gets brought up- tankless heaters cut down on used space. If my hot tank needed replacing I'd consider it because it would free up an area the size of a shower in my workroom.

A negative to mention however, is if you have a heat pump like I do you can use a hot water tank like a "heat battery" for the heat pump and gain even further efficiency, far beyond what a specifically-designed tankless system can achieve. Technology Connections on Youtube has a good video on it.


SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/29/21 12:48 p.m.
RevRico said:
SVreX (Forum Supporter) said:

Low end electric models don't work, even in a canoe. 

Not even for a single sink?

I'm not seeing any mini tanks that last more than a year, so I've been thinking of point of use for a lone sink that sees use maybe once a week.

Single sink is what they are designed for, and generally work fine (although low end ones are still sketchy)


OHSCrifle UltraDork
7/31/21 9:48 p.m.
jackaustin said:

A friend of mines water heater went over the weekend. Told him we should switch to a tankless unit since its just him in the 600sqft house. He only uses hot water once or twice a day. Good rebates are also available from the gas company that brought the price in line with a good 12 year tank heater. Seemed like a win-win. Then today he called a bunch of plumbers who said tankless heaters are garbage. Even the gas company told him not to bother with one. Biggest issues they said are pancaking with cold water, scaling of the exchange, they break down a lot, and basically don't work.

I see them being installed on TV shows, a few builders I know have been switching to them, and personally haven't heard anything that bad about one. I was just about to put one in my house. Part of me is that some of the negativity was from then they were new and didn't work. And 2nd is from plumbers who don't want to learn new technology and stick with the tanks.

Any real world experience with one and would you recommend one? Thanks

I have a Rinnai. The incoming water line has a SS filter that resembles a thimble. I clean or change it when I flush the heater (with white vinegar) for an hour - first week in January every year. I have taken the cover off and vacuumed out the intake and exhaust once in six years also. Mine's positioned very close to our bathrooms and laundry room and I think it's fantastic. 

I suspect people who think they're E36 M3 are the people who don't maintain them. 

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/31/21 11:51 p.m.
OHSCrifle said:

I suspect people who think they're E36 M3 are the people who don't maintain them. 

They're also the people who have had them fail and had to wait a week for parts without any hot water.  Traditional water heaters are much less complex (thus more reliable) and much easier to get parts for if they do break (plumber likely already has them on his truck).

Duke MegaDork
8/1/21 6:46 a.m.

In reply to jackaustin :

I have a Rinnai that is probably 15 years old and has functioned 100% since the day we got it with literally zero maintenance.

We are on pretty good city water, but I have never done anything to it.


daeman Dork
8/1/21 4:45 p.m.

I've got one on the place we own now.

Pros, shower all day if you like or have extra guests and not be paranoid about running out of hot water.

Cons, the kitchen is on the opposite side of the house so hot water takes some time (that's not exclusive to tankless, but does seem to take a little more time/water than tank) and it doesn't work well with stop start operation.

That said, when I do our extension in the next year or two, I'll probably look at two tankless units. One to supply the kitchen, laundry and ensuite, the other to supply the main bathroom and powder room along with possibly an outdoor kitchen. Obviously that adds a bit more expense, but it cuts down on water and gas waste and should ensure there's always a working hot shower/ hot water source in the event that one unit were to fail.

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