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Old 05-14-2013, 10:57 AM   #1
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Best tankless water heater?


Builder is pushing for Navien, but after some searching, it sounds like many people are having issues with their Navien units. Would like to hear some opinions on what you have installed and how it has been serving you. For our needs we are looking for something that can service the following:

- ~8gpm for 10-15mins at 100-102 degrees (F)
- Home is ~3400 sq ft, just my wife and I for now with the occasional guests
- House is in Texas so deltaT impact usually felt between Dec-Feb
- Ability to use circ pump or built-in circ pump

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Old 05-14-2013, 11:11 AM   #2
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Best tankless water heater?


I used the search feature located at the top right- here is one of the search results for "tankless water heater" This topic has been addressed many times here
Navien CR-240a tankless water heater issues

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Old 05-14-2013, 11:12 AM   #3
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PDubs.... Can't advise you as to best maker/model.... BUT you sure are right to check it out thoroughly.

Three instances I have knowledge of have been nothing but trouble for my sister, and two friends.

So much so, I gave up considering them and installed a new WH last year.

Gonna watch the thread to see if anyone is really confident in a certain maker

Good luck
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:46 AM   #4
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Best tankless water heater?


Heh. That is the exact thread that I looked through prior to submitting this one.

Our house is plumbed for a loop and was originally designed for two water heaters with a circ pump. At the time of build, we decided to remove one of the water heaters/pump to put towards other stuff. The option is obviously there to add another WH/pump but trying to avoid maintaining two and increase efficiency at the same time.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:56 AM   #5
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Best tankless water heater?


There are several plumbers here regularly but they have day jobs. I expect your questions will get addressed a little later
Personally, I'm not fan of tankless- yet.
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Old 05-14-2013, 06:46 PM   #6
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I don't like tankless either..but bosch seems excellent...ben sr
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:44 PM   #7
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You can ask 10 different plumbers and get 10 different answers. Rinnai is Japanese and a solid tank. The problem is whatever a plumber is installing will always be the best.
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:58 PM   #8
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The best one, is the one that stays on the shelf. First off, how many people are in the house, how many bathrooms, is there a Garden tub being installed? those first three will decide if it is the best option. We have a 50 gallon Power Vent Water Heater, that is capable of allowing all three of us in our house to have at least 20 min. showers within an hour, also be able to run the dishwasher at the same time, and still have some hot water left over during the recovery process.

Unless you are looking at staying there more than five years, and have something like a Garden tub, where a 50 gallon water heater would not be able to supply enough hot water to fill the tub, then a a tankless may be the best route. Otherwise, a tanked unit is still the best to boot, and they do make the gas units in a 90% plus efficient style, electric there is the hybrid units, that are like a heat pump, and have gotten better with the second going on third gen series.

The 50 gallon tank unit that we went with, was the Richmond Power Vent, which we got at a local Menard's Hardware store in our town.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghostmaker View Post
You can ask 10 different plumbers and get 10 different answers. Rinnai is Japanese and a solid tank. The problem is whatever a plumber is installing will always be the best.
if he is honest it will not always be what he installs if its not the best...I don't install bosch but I understand from other sources its a very good heater in the way of tankless..which as you already seen I don't care for them so I don't install them either....ben sr
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben's plumbing View Post
if he is honest it will not always be what he installs if its not the best...I don't install bosch but I understand from other sources its a very good heater in the way of tankless..which as you already seen I don't care for them so I don't install them either....ben sr
I've heard bad things about all of them. All have lemons.

I also would not install one. I do not think they are worth the expense.
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Old 05-15-2013, 07:45 AM   #11
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Best tankless water heater?


I don't think you can use a circulating pump with a tankless water heater. Seems like that would make the heater run all the time.

I installed a gas tankless when we built our house. It happens to be a Rheem. I know nothing about other brands other than I've heard Rinnai is a good one. I was not concerned about return on investment, just unlimited hot water. Nary a problem in nearly five years of use.

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Old 05-15-2013, 09:40 AM   #12
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Best tankless water heater?


Great input so far! To answer one of the questions above, the main culprit leading us into this direction is the 50+ gallon, two person 48" tub. It runs out of hot water half way and I end up bringing boiling water to help supplement the remainder of the water level to get it over the sensor. And (so far) the plan is to stay here another 5+ years. Like others have mentioned, the goal is not to be the most efficient on my street. I just want the darn hot water to fill the tub so I don't have to bring over gallons of boiling water!!

I have heard of Rheem but wasn't aware of Bosch making a tankless. Hopefully just one unit will suffice as well. Has anyone put multiple units in series? Not sure if that's overkill.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:11 PM   #13
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Best tankless water heater?


One of the keys to an effective tankless heater is to get the right size, which depends on several factors. If you do, I don't see any advantage, and a lot of unnecessary expense, to having two in series.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by md2lgyk View Post
I don't think you can use a circulating pump with a tankless water heater. Seems like that would make the heater run all the time.
Well I don't know if you're supposed to or not, but a pretty reputable plumber put a little, maybe 5-8 gallon, holding tank on my neighbors for recirc.
The whole system has been nothing but trouble.... I think the plumbing company is setting up a satelite office in her driveway.
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Old 05-15-2013, 05:28 PM   #15
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Best tankless water heater?


I am a certified Navien tech so I have some experience with them. The new NPE models have addressed most of the previous issues and seem to be a big improvement. Having said that I don't think you are going to find a tankless that will give you that flow rate in the winter. They all throttle down to keep the supply temp at the expense of flow. You also have to have sufficient gas supply as tankless have 200k Btu + burners versus 40k standard water heaters. For your situation you might be better served by a high output high eff. Unit like the A.O. Smith Vertex.

The Navien is also set up to do internal or external recirc with a built in pump.

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