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Old 01-25-2011, 12:07 PM   #1
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how to replace leaking hot water heater?


my circa 2002 Therma-Flow hot water heater wouldn't light, so my oil guy came by and, long story short, determined that it was leaking and needs to be replaced soon, if not right now.

He presented two options: putting in a new tank for $1500 or install a tankless heater on the side of my Weil-McClain boiler for $1100. My oil company is reputable and prices include everything (removal, installation, piping, taxes etc.)

The tankless option seems like a no-brainer, but is there any reason that I wouldn't choose that option?

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Old 01-25-2011, 12:24 PM   #2
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If he is talking about a tankless coil in your existing hot water boiler, I would vote no. I lived in a house for 8 years with such an arrangement and was not satisfied. Ran out of hot water, inconsistent water temp., boiler has to run during the summer and my gas bills were high as it is overkill to run a large boiler just for domestic hot water. Ended up installing a conventional gas water heater to replace the tankless coil.

Not familiar with the Therma-Flow brand that you mention and you not say if it is gas or electric but $1500 for a like for like replacement sounds high.

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Old 01-25-2011, 12:28 PM   #3
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>> Not familiar with the Therma-Flow brand that you mention and you not say if it is gas or electric but $1500 for a like for like replacement sounds high.

It is electric.
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Old 01-25-2011, 12:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by debiasio View Post
>> Not familiar with the Therma-Flow brand that you mention and you not say if it is gas or electric but $1500 for a like for like replacement sounds high.

It is electric.
Ayuh,... How Big,..??
Why was an Oil Guy lookin' at an Electric wh,..??
Why did you say it wouldn't Light,..?? That alone implys Gas, or Oil...

The tankless option is Ok, I've got 1....
I burn a tank of oil over the summer for only DHW...
But,...
My Electric Bill is now sub-$100., where it used to be $250.+ a month...

If you go with the tankless, a water flow restrictor is needed to slow the water enough to heat it...
Mine is set at I believe 3gpm, 'n it works just Fine,...
Pretty much Unlimited hw...

Electric wh'ers in the 30/ 40 gallon range are only a few to several hundred bucks....
Sooo,... That leaves a 'ell of a Big labor bill...
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Old 01-25-2011, 12:53 PM   #5
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>>Why was an Oil Guy lookin' at an Electric wh,..??

My mistake..the water heater is oil-fired. It's 40 gallons.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:10 AM   #6
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I would definitely replace the water heater with Gas or Electric and leave my main Boiler off all summer.

I would buy it from the the big orange or big blue store and install it myself for under $500

Last edited by COLDIRON; 01-26-2011 at 08:11 AM. Reason: Changed text
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:34 AM   #7
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I think that oil water heaters cost a little more to buy than gas.

If you can't get or don't want oil and you don't have natural gas, then you will have to go electric. On average electric hot water costs twice as much per gallon in energy cost as gas and it takes longer for the next tankful to heat up.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:11 AM   #8
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Since you have oil, I would definitely replace with the same. Oil fired water heaters start in the $900 range and go up, $1500 installed is not bad. Personally I would not go with the tanless coil to save $400. You will eat that up in 2 years by running your boiler all summer.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:08 AM   #9
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I think that oil water heaters cost a little more to buy than gas.

If you can't get or don't want oil and you don't have natural gas, then you will have to go electric. On average electric hot water costs twice as much per gallon in energy cost as gas and it takes longer for the next tankful to heat up.
Maybe, Maybe not. Remember your not running your oil fired boiler for many months of the year $3 or 3.50 a gallon is not cheap. Plus maintenance. Electric and gas water heaters very little maintenance.
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:05 AM   #10
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how to replace leaking hot water heater?


I got a lot of your replies after I had to make a decision.

Ended up going with the tankless coil with 5 gpm capacity. It's just me and my wife for the forseeable future, so the hot water demand is not that high. Now I'm wondering if they suggested this solution because, while it's cheaper up front for the customer, they'll end up using more oil in the long term. If the oil bill is in fact tremendously higher during the warm weather months, then I will need to re-examine the situation.

Thanks for all the advice.
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Old 01-29-2011, 10:32 AM   #11
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Back in 1973 I built a new house and had the tankless water heater insatalled which is a copper coil installed in the furnace and the water is heated as it flows through the pipe and it worked perfectly with 4 people living in the house at the time.JOHN

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