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Old 08-22-2006, 12:19 AM   #1
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Tankless water heater

wayyyy off topic, as I'm inquiring about a whole house tankless water heater. NOT for use in your Airstream.

I'm considering replacing my 80 gal water heater with a tankless model. Those who have done this, or have knowledge - What are your thoughts about it? I'd like to keep it economical, I see them range in price from $200 on up to over $1,000.00.

Has anyone bought or used the TITAN SCR-2? It seems to be the least expensive available (I know, I know, you get what you pay for)

What brand(s) have you used?
What's the best brand/price/value?
How well has it worked?
Do you see any savings in your utility bill?
Where did you purchase it?
Installed yourself - how easy or difficult?
Etc. Etc.
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Old 08-22-2006, 12:35 AM   #2
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Thumbs up Go Tankless!

GP,

I built a new house in Underwood, WA in 2000. I had 2 tankless water heaters from Takagi. The whole house unit was the TK-1 and the unit that operated the radiant in-floor hydronic heat was the TK-Jr. Both worked flawlessly for the 5 years that I owned the house. The benefits are no fuel useage when not heating water, no tank or element to wear out, silent operation and reduced overall energy bills. They were both propane fired models.

I don't remember where I bought them from but I do recall that it was on the Net after googling and a lot of reading.

Hope this helps!
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Old 08-22-2006, 08:02 AM   #3
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GP
The unit listed looks like an electric heat on demand. You may save a little but not nearly as much as if you get a gas on demand heater. Todays electric tank water heaters are much better insulated than in the past so the losses while sitting are low.
On the other hand, heating water with natural gas or even LP is cheaper. The problem is that a tank type gas heater is vented and has greater losses while sitting. Also, a gas on demand can heat a greater volume of water.
I would use a gas tankless for major uses and would consider an electric tankless for small remote bathrooms. Remember, the tankless electric draws a lot of current so large gauge wire and 240v is usually required.
Hope this helps
steve
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Old 08-22-2006, 12:43 PM   #4
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We put in a Bosch Natural Gas Tankless about 4 months ago . . . should have done it 4 years ago. We are consistently saving about a third every month on useage, it takes up less space (we actually bought the exterior version and had a spot on an exterior wall that worked - so we now have more space in the Laundry Room) . . . and no one complains about no more hot water in the morning. I think we paid something over $800 on ebay for a New In Box unit. We had it installed by a plumber. I agree that if you have to have an electric unit I don't know that you'd save as much . . . and it would take a lot of current to run it. Good Luck.
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Old 08-22-2006, 12:58 PM   #5
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Tankless Gas

We put in a Rinnai 2520 about a year ago. The 30gal electric cost us $100 per month and we always ran out of hot water but that limited our usage.
The gas unit costs 1/3 of electric per unit hot water but we use more hot water so we only save 1/2. Although the gas and electric have both gone up.
So for unlimited hot water for $50 for the 5 of us our unit pays for itself in about 2-1/2 years. We paid about $1100 plus $400 installation.
I recommend a local gas guy that you trust, we use an independent dealer that does not work for free and is there when we need him.
Good luck,

R
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Old 08-22-2006, 03:27 PM   #6
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Thanks for the input/opinions.

Gas seems to be the recommended way to go, so far.

However is gas really all that cheap anymore? Years ago, it was touted as being cheaper than electric, better for the environment, blah, blah, blah. Everyone switched, and now gas prices have risen dramatically.
Today I pay $1.15926 per Therm for natural gas. My electric runs $0.05057 per KWH (first 600) $0.06080/KWH (next 700) and $0.07333.KWH for everything else above that. My gas and electric are thru the same utility (Avista).

My 80 Gal electric Kenmore is rated @ using 5092 KHW/Year average for a cost of $482/yr. I doubt my family of five usuage is actually average, we're probably closer to the top of the usage scale, so actual costs are probably higher.

I'd love to SAVE money by installing an on-demand heater, but the catalyst that started me looking is the fact that we constantly run out of hot water, and two people can't bathe at the same time. I like the endless supply that on-demand provides.

If the gas version can save me money, then I'm all for it. However that means having it professionally installed, vs electric I can install myself. It's only a couple feet to the electric panel, and I have the double 60watt breakers available in my panel. None of the brands listed seem to list an average usage cost, so your input is helpful.

Also we have a high mineral content in the water (city) here, and it wears out the elements in the tank alot quicker than normal. The tankless designs claim that the mineral content does not affect their operation or lifespan.
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Old 08-22-2006, 05:34 PM   #7
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GP,
I have the Eemax tankless system installed in my business office. It is electric we've had it for a year and it works great. The company makes a wide variety of systems from whole home to under the sink this is a simple under the sink unit. There is another company based here in Chandler AZ called SKYE don't know there product but I know their contract manufacturer Jabil. Google both of these brand names to learn more. Based upon my limited usage in the office, I would strongly consider going tankless in my home.
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Old 08-22-2006, 07:15 PM   #8
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Hi!

Years ago (about 25...) we had a central heating system that was wood burning. It also heated our water. Endless hot water! We lived here in the North country and the first month our heating bill (other heating in the home was electric...) was $360 and that was in 1980! After installing the wood burning central heating system (did have an electric fan to dispurse heat, and kept our electric hot water heater for summer...) our winter heating bill went down to $36. Now that was cool! I don't remember the brand, but we did buy it in Oregon. Had a big old house that had been built in the 1930's and had virtually no insulation.... the system kept us warm and toasty. Chopped a lot of wood though.....

Next time we replace our hot water heater we might go to an on demand system... our problem here we do not have natural gas available.

Mrs. NorCal Bambi (traveling in S Tardis)
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Old 08-22-2006, 08:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaddyGrn
Hi!

Years ago (about 25...) we had a central heating system that was wood burning. It also heated our water. Endless hot water! We lived here in the North country and the first month our heating bill (other heating in the home was electric...) was $360 and that was in 1980! After installing the wood burning central heating system (did have an electric fan to dispurse heat, and kept our electric hot water heater for summer...) our winter heating bill went down to $36. Now that was cool! I don't remember the brand, but we did buy it in Oregon. Had a big old house that had been built in the 1930's and had virtually no insulation.... the system kept us warm and toasty. Chopped a lot of wood though.....

Next time we replace our hot water heater we might go to an on demand system... our problem here we do not have natural gas available.

Mrs. NorCal Bambi (traveling in S Tardis)
Go with a propane model......................
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Old 08-22-2006, 10:13 PM   #10
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We installed a Takagi TK-1 about 4 years ago when they first became available, I believe. We lost the hot water at the turn of the faucet that our storage tank heater w/ a recirculating system offered, but we gained limitless hot water and about 20 cu. ft. of storage space.

IMHO, gas is the only option because an electric heater of the same capacity (temperature rise per gallon of water) would cause your electric meter to spin fast enough for you to be able to cut wood with it.
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Old 08-25-2006, 04:28 PM   #11
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just got my gas bill, last year this period we used 30 therms, this year 15 . . . so this month it was better than the 1/3 savings I previously stated.
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