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Electric tankless hot water heaters

Discussion in 'Projects, Builds, Woodworking, Metalworks' started by southfork, Apr 28, 2017.



  1. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    Thinking of putting one in, anyone using them now? I have a recovery system on my ac that heats the hot water in the summer but was thinking of a tankless one for the winter, only for 2 people so I could intall it above the existing heater and plug it into the 30 amp receptacle.
     
  2. Goldhedge

    Goldhedge Modal Operator/Moderator Site Mgr Site Supporter

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    I don't use them, but I know of a ranch in the mountains that does. Plenty of hot water.
     
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  3. Professur

    Professur Midas Member Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    I've got one sitting on a shelf. Draws too much damn power to use. One time where 'bigger is better' definitely wasn't the right call.
     
  4. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    I see some draw 60+ amps and need size 8 wire , I want to use my existing receptacle so mine can only draw 30 amps.
     
  5. the_shootist

    the_shootist I self identify as a black '69 Camaro Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    60 amps? That's insane!!
     
  6. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    It's lots of amps but for minutes vs 30 amps for hours on a regular hot water heater , in the end it is cheaper if you can do it your self. Depends on what the gallon flow is that you need.
     
  7. GOLDZILLA

    GOLDZILLA Harvurd Koleej Jeenyus Midas Member

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    Comparatively expensive by an order of magnitude over one with a tank, and that tank stores water you can use for a while in a pinch if the water were to stop flowing for any reason.
     
  8. Professur

    Professur Midas Member Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    That's the one sitting on my shelf. I've got the freeboard on the breaker panel to install it ... but having to run wire thicker than for the stove the length of the house was a deal breaker.
     
  9. D-FENZ

    D-FENZ Gold Member Gold Chaser Site Supporter ++

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    Tankless water heaters are kind of a fad with dubious savings. They do work, but the expense in your situation with the existing heat pump loop for summertime use, it would never pay off for you- even if it were to last forever. If you must install one, make sure it is properly sized for your exact usage and install a bypass to idle it for the summer. Those things are like a dead short when fired up. The pissy amount saved by not storing hot water would never add up for you.

    One thing lost on many people is that in the wintertime, any heat loss from a tank type water heater is 'lost' to your heated space, cutting down BTU for BTU (assuming equal efficiencies) on the need for heat from your furnace. So considering your situation with the summertime heat pump loop, you are the perfect candidate for leaving well enough alone. Save your money. Just add another layer of insulation over your existing water heater to save a bit of cooling expense in the summer.

    One more thing... Indulge my oddball pet peeve if you will. It's a water heater- not a 'hot' water heater. If the water were already hot there would be no need to heat it.
     
  10. CrimsonGuardJay

    CrimsonGuardJay Silver Member Silver Miner

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    Same damned story. Electrician mounted it and then told me I don't have enough juice. Moved, took it with me. New house, same story. Sold the damned thing on eBay for about what I spent on it and never ever looked at another.
     
  11. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    Mines in the garage so no issue on it heating house, I just hate paying the electric bill and do what i can to minimize it, just added more insualtion in attic and was thinking about the tankless heater, came across a hot water heat pump that looks interesting also.
     
  12. Thecrensh

    Thecrensh Gold Member Gold Chaser

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    The gas powered ones are popular in Europe - I have stayed at hotels with them and never ran out of hot water.
     
  13. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    In Vietnam we have a water heater/pressure pump shower mounted on the wall of the shower. It runs on 220 (that’s the house voltage in VN) and it works great. Each of the three bathrooms has one. Wanted to get one for putting in a shower here in the states but they’re not for sale over here (that I could find). Some chicken shit rule about location in a wet area, probably. Hah – no balls no glory. The one problem I did discover was the fact that water in VN comes from a tank on the roof (usually) and that water, setting in the sun, is not very cold (we mostly drink bottled water over there). So the inlet water is often at 60 or 70° and does not require the same temperature rise that our water over here that comes in from the main at 40-50° requires.

    Yeah, electrics are power hogs alright, that’s why everyone chooses gas. But, no gas on my street – sniff.

    BF
     
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  14. D-FENZ

    D-FENZ Gold Member Gold Chaser Site Supporter ++

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    I'm sorry. I get a bit of tunnel vision because we work primarily north of the Mason-Dixon Line where most or all water heaters are installed in heated spaces (to avoid freezing). But the gist of my argument is still valid, especially since you would not get the benefits from the tankless water heater during the cooling season.

    Small, point of use units at each fixture could be useful but not the way Americans tend to use hot water. And it would be expensive to retrofit multiple units for all of the fixtures. In Costa Rica and New Zealand at least, maybe elsewhere, they are very common- even electrically heated shower heads. But the flow rates tend to be very low so they need little power, and many fixtures have no hot water at all. Lots of your hot water use is just heating the pipes and water between your heater and the fixture.
     
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  15. nickndfl

    nickndfl Midas Member Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    They are good if you have limited space such as a far away split bathroom or separate building. They are for specific uses, not broad based.
     
  16. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Here's the shower heaters I was speaking of:

    Shower heater1.jpg Shower heater2.jpg

    These are self contained, dedicated shower units. Their appliance stores over there have many varieties of them with different GPM flow rates. This one here is a low capacity one but it worked just fine to my satisfaction, and I never got electrocuted using it. All markings and instruction on the unit are in english, funny, but they're not available over here.

    BF
     
  17. Professur

    Professur Midas Member Midas Member Site Supporter ++

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    I've used one of those in Ireland. Brilliant things, but no way can you get the idiots on this side of the pond to see reason.
     
  18. gringott

    gringott Killed then Resurrected Midas Member Site Supporter

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    Had the shower head water heaters in Honduras. They lasted about 2 months or so before burning out, power had problems down there. Light bulbs burned out all the time too.
     
  19. viking

    viking Silver Member Silver Miner

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    Ones for bathrooms in Europe always seemed to have a low flow rate. Not my idea of a proper shower. Probably why most Europeans don't bathe.
     
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  20. viking

    viking Silver Member Silver Miner

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    Unless you are rural, most around here are gas tank heaters.
     
  21. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Really? Most Europeans don't bathe? I never knew that. Then, I've never been to Europe (or Spain) but I kinda like the music. They say the ladies are insane there...

    sorry 3,2,1...
    BF
     
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  22. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    Those are pretty neat but not looking to do any wiring, thats why I though about just staying with the 30 amp one .
     
  23. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    Yah airs on now so heaters off untill probably Nov or so, I have my heater on a timer also so the use is minimal but just dont like paying that bill, especially since the city started taxing it 2 years back. I'll spend a thousand to fk them out of 50 just for principle .
     
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  24. Goldhedge

    Goldhedge Modal Operator/Moderator Site Mgr Site Supporter

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    What about a steam shower? I think that's what it was.

    Got in one once and after it steamed up it was amazing!
     
  25. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Did you catch the part where I mentioned they run on 220? On the one pictured there in my photo post, you can read the model number under the word 'Reston' as P900, I think (think, if I remember right) that the 900 refers to 900 watts draw, not as much as an electric space heater.

    I went to several appliance stores over there looking at different models, took down a buncha information off their specs tags to look up when I got back home. Then I discovered that you couldn't buy one in the US. That was eight or nine years ago and all that info is lost, all I have left is these two pictures.

    BF
     
  26. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    I did but this one would need the 220 line run from the garage to the bathroom would it not?
     
  27. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Must have ½ of the 220 feed in there already. Ya just need the other phase (the other side of your incoming 220v line), 14 ga should work ok. If a real electrician could weigh in on that solution I would feel vindicated.

    BF
     
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  28. southfork

    southfork Mother Lode Found Mother Lode

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    Thats my point, I would have to run a line to the bathroom be it 220 or 110 to hook up the unit, thats what im trying to avoid, dont want to go into attic and run wires, thats why i wanted to use it above my current heater and put by pass valves for summer when I use the AC heater. I cant find spec for the unit you mentioned but it appears to be a point of use unit which means it needs power right there.
     
  29. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder Hypophthalmichthys molitrix Silver Miner Site Supporter

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    Yeah, point of use, alright. And specs? that was the problem I encountered when trying to look them up when back in the states. Didn't keep the Vietnam links I used when over there - should have, probably could have ordered one and had my family ship it over.

    But 14 is a lot easier to pull than ten. And it fits through the same access points so I thought it might be a possible solution - sorry.

    BF
     
  30. Merlin

    Merlin Gold Member Gold Chaser Site Supporter ++

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    A tankless water heater would be perfect for my kitchen, which is in the new room addition and thus a long way from the hot water tank under the old bathroom in the basement. It takes forever (seemingly) for the hot water to arrive at my kitchen sink faucet and I pour gallons of cold down the drain. Another solution would be a pump to recirculate the hot water supply when the water at the kitchen sink falls below an acceptable temp. My plumber estimated that would be about $650 installed.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017
  31. Irons

    Irons Deep Sixed Site Supporter Mother Lode

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    I used one for years at my cabin and we loved it. Problem was I had to face reality when it needed service and I could not do it.
    They are complex units so even a simple problem like I had was beyond my fixing it. And I can't have that. I sold it on ebay as is and still got a hundred fifty for it.

    Our ground water here in northern Michigan is cold, I mean super cold year round. You have to have a unit that is rated to your area or your results will not be good. Mine was a 3 phase EEMax whole house unit. EEMax had a map on their website so you could match the unit you wanted to your areas average ground water temp.
    It was great we could run 3 hot water applications @ once and never had a problem. What happened to it is each phase has a heating element and a brain card. One of the cards went out on the unit so it only made warm water and not hot.

    Brain cards and even the heating elements are not expensive but it's not like you can run over to ace hardware and get one. I could possibly get one in a big city but I live very very rural.
    And even if I had a replacement card I have no freaking idea how the feck electricity works so beyond connecting a wire or 2 I do not touch it.

    I really liked it but it was well beyond something I could handle if something went wrong.

    I now have a basic electric water heater and if it fecks up I can drain it and slap a new one in on a Sunday if needed.

    .

    .
     
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