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Old 12-10-2003, 01:08 PM   #1
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Question Tankless water heater

Hello, hello,

I'm about to buy a tankless and vent less water heater from excellamerica...
it says on the specs : 1.6 Gallons per minute (45F temp rise)

Is there someone who already use or install a tankless water heater ?

I would like to know the negative point of it... 'cause I 'm trying to reduce the space and the weight inside my airstream....

And by the way... Have an Happy holyday, and thanks for answering.

Pierre.
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Old 12-10-2003, 01:29 PM   #2
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Lightbulb Just abit of info

FC54

If I may pass this on..
Before I refurbished my water heater last year, I had also thougth about replacing it with a newer concept.
My requirements were similar to yours, it had to have constant flow water heated on demand, etc.
Let me share with you the benefits of my research.

RV 500

lol, check out their A/S cartoon..

When the time does come to replace the old one, this is the way I'll be going..

ciao
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Old 12-10-2003, 01:41 PM   #3
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FWIW

Most shower heads are designed for 2.5 gpm (in home construction, I know the shower head in the 345 puts out less).

1.6 gpm at only a 45 degress rise might be a bit skinny.

You could always drop the shower head in a 5 gallon bucket, measure th time to fill it, and estimate your real gpm requirement.

I would hope you would be able to at least try one out (rental unit?) prior to purchasing and installing.
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Old 12-10-2003, 02:21 PM   #4
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FWIW2

The big thing for me is being able to use the unit year round. A 45 degree increase in water temp in the winter in many climates means a full hot shower will be 78 degree water at the lowest, or up to 85-88 if you are lucky. Too cold for me and I like cool showers. The other issue is actual germ killing power of the minimally heated water when it comes to washing dishes, etc.

Also consider the operating needs of the heater and the water source that will be fed thru it. With a tanked heater there is the ability to flush out sediments and scale. I do not know if that is possible here.

Is this the unit you are considering? http://www.cetsolar.com/38b.htm

The base model can give a 90 degree rise in water temps if the flow is .6 GPM Means a trickle shower, or navy shower to get the hottest water, but it would work. I would test the flow rate on the shower head or look to get a really low flow one so the GPM is in the .8 GPM range. But that is just me.

The thing to remember when looking at a shower head is that with the in line restrictor in place the unit will comply with the 2.5 GPM federal law at 80 PSI. You will be a 35-40 PSI so you would have 1.25 GPM flow.
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Old 12-10-2003, 02:32 PM   #5
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Arrow more info

Flying cloud 53,

Did you give up on a tankless solution ? what kind of water heater do you have ?

lol about the airstream cartoon....


the model I plan to use would be this one :

http://www.excelamerica.com/calentadores_eng.htm

may be I should get back to a atwood 6 gal Lp and electric ?

thanks again...

pierre.
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Old 12-10-2003, 04:04 PM   #6
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Thumbs up Intersting info.

pierre
Thanks, that was very intersting`~..To answer your question, No..I haven't given up on the RV500..But, for now, as long as the original unit works..I'll use it..I know it's just a question of time. When that happens, I'll be giving them a call..I'm quite impressed with their product and, the way they handle all the question over the fone..
Price wise, it's more expensive but..I think you'll agree that the advantages outweighs the cost factor.

ciao`
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Old 12-10-2003, 04:14 PM   #7
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53FlyingCloud,

When my water heater bit the dust, I was going to get the RV500. P.O. did not believe in sacraficial anode. However the RV500 will not fit in the same space as a six gallon water heater. It takes the same space as a ten gallon water heater.

I would have loved to have installed one.
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Old 12-10-2003, 11:10 PM   #8
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Red face You're right~

Diesel...
I just saw that~How did I miss that simple fact? lol
Quote:
In almost all instances it will. The RV-500 mounting flange is designed to perfectly replace a common ten gallon tank heater. To replace a six gallon heater, a few inches must be added to the vertical dimension. This can be cut up or down.
Hmmm, I need to get back with them with a few more "pointed" question..
Thanks..
ciao
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Old 12-11-2003, 08:40 AM   #9
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Sorry

I guess installing one of these would be considered a "tankless task"!
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Old 12-11-2003, 08:49 AM   #10
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On a more serious note

Some years ago, I bought a tankless heater. When I added a laundry room on to my house at the far end from the gas water heater, I installed the tankless heater to service the washing machine. I found that it took about 15 minutes to fill the washer to get water hot enough.

I then bought a second tankless heater to put in series with the first. I ended up selling the house before I installed it.

I later gave the second heater to a friend who was building a straw-bale house. She put a solar collector on the roof and the tankless heater in series. With the pre-warmed water, she was very pleased with the performance.

My opinion is that for most of the year you will not get a decent shower from one of these heaters unless the water is pre-warmed. Even getting a good flow to do such things as rinse dishes with good hot water will be a problem.
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Old 12-11-2003, 09:11 AM   #11
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My brother works in energy managment... the companies that go out to homes and businesses, do thermal studies, design energy plans, etc. They don't recommend tankless water heaters for Americans anymore because they've seen too many people unsatisfied with the lower temperatures at higher flow rates.

I'd stick to the 6 gallon gas/electric Atwood. We don't fire ours up until about 1/2 hour before we wash dishes and shower, and shut it off before the last shower (mine ), so it isn't heating water that will be left there to cool down. Unless the temperature is going to drop below freezing, when we leave it running because it's DSI. Those with traditional pilot lights seem to be able to get by without freezing by just running the pilot light.
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Old 12-11-2003, 09:51 PM   #12
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Water heater

I think the advantage of the tankless water heater is that you can take as long a shower as you like without running out of hot water half way through. The 45 temp rise is not really a limit, the heater will heat to whatever temperature is set, but at a lower flow rate.
Question: does it make sense to put in a small (maybe 1 gallon) heater just to handle hand-washing, and a tankless heater to handle showers and laundry?
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Old 12-11-2003, 11:22 PM   #13
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Markdoann-
Doesn't seem to make sense to me to install TWO h2o heaters..... Do what I do for washing up, dishes, etc..... I use my electric six quart roaster..... fill it with cold water, let it heat, use that for dishes and washing. You'd be amazed how far six quarts of water will go! We only light the big heater for showers! And those are rare..... we're ummm, big people and so prefer to use truck stops or other facilities for showering.

Elizabeth in Iowa
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Old 12-11-2003, 11:35 PM   #14
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Talking Not ever...

John,
Quote:
I guess installing one of these would be considered a "tankless task"!
lmao, that's funny...
It's interesting to read the pros and cons, all of which are valid points.
One of the biggest drawbacks would be the extra cost, then the "modification" to the current opening. (As I see it.)
As markdoane pointed out,
Quote:
I think the advantage of the tankless water heater is that you can take as long a shower as you like without running out of hot water half way through.
This would be the biggest advantage and, one that would make for a happy camping family`.
Markdoane, your question about having a small one just for washing your hands, etc makes more sense as I'm incline to wanting the outside of my unit to be kept as it is.
Has anyone heard/seen one of these water heater as an installed unit in a motorhome?
RoadKingMoe I was under the impression that these water heaters had an adjustable water temp range..makes sense that they would. Again, back to the books on spec.
The whole point of this is about choices and, being able to make the right decision when it comes time to replace a faulty unit.

ciao
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Old 12-12-2003, 09:01 AM   #15
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On Demand Soup Maker

A popular option on the late 80's Motor Homes was a small electric 110 volt "on demand" hot water reservoir mounted at the sink.

Actually, in my opinion, the one on the '87 offers little usefulness.

It takes a couple of minutes to heat up the reservoir (about a quart), and, other than making instant hot drinks, it's pretty useless. The tank does, however, have an adjustable thermostat.
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Old 12-12-2003, 10:48 AM   #16
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Wink

Thanks again for all the comments which should help me to decide...

Hum hum .... To tell you the true I still don't know....
As my flyingCloud didn't have any water heater, I have to (or I could) create an opening where ever I want to access the W-Heater.
So just to sum-up...:

If I choose the tank W heater (probably Atwood 6gal) I would have to care of its location regarding the complete balance of the trailer, and create an opening with door access throught the skin... aouch...but I will have 6 gal heatable either by LP or 110 v.

If I choose the tankless W heater, I would be able to put anywhere in the trailer except right down the floor or in an enclosed area...but no opening throught skin, and unlimited hot (maybe warm) shower (depending on the size of my water tank... )and only heatable by LP.

And I am not talking about the flowrate...

D..mmmmm I really need to find out... may be the weekend, will be good...?
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Old 12-12-2003, 11:10 AM   #17
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How do you operate an LP water, tankless or otherwise, without an exhaust vent? Or for that matter, without a source for combustion air?

For what it is worth, our 6 gal. atwood has never run out of hot water. However, we do have a very low flow shower head. We also turn ours off at night as it is located directly under our head when we sleep and the occasional "whoosh" as it fires up is an annoyance. It takes about 10 min. to heat up of a morning.

Mark
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Old 12-12-2003, 11:45 AM   #18
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Hi Marc,

Really good thing you point out about the "woushhh" I would either put the water heater under the galley sink, or run the water heater in electric mode at night if I have to put it under the bed...

At this link (I already posted earlier) you would find what they call "ventless" water heater....

http://www.excelamerica.com/calentadores_eng.htm

As any LP combustible appliance, you still HAVE to provide enought "natural" vent to provide O2 to burn...
The ventless point means the combustion didn't provide carbon monoxide and therefore doesn't need a dedicated exhaust vent...

That's what I understood....

Pierre.
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Old 12-12-2003, 04:07 PM   #19
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Pierre, I would like to see you do some more research on this project. I am not an expert, so I am expressing merely fears here, not a truly informed opinion.

It appears that these vent-less appliances are designed to be used in a house on the priciple that the amount of CO produced is not going to raise the overall level to a danger point. Note that they specify that they are not to be used in a bedroom or bathroom. The only explaination for this restriction I can see is that the size of the room would be too small to safely disperse the CO. The largest Airstream is smaller than a typical bedroom.

Also, running a unit like this on lp will introduce rather a lot of water vapor, which will be nuisance unless you have vents open.

My other concern is bring in another lp line inside the coach. True, most of us already have one for the furnace and range, but the water heater is usually plumbed so that there are no connections inside. In the event of a leak, it will escape more or less harmlessly outside. This will not be the case on a tankless unit installed inside the coach.

Mark
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Old 10-27-2004, 04:16 PM   #20
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Vent Free Water heater

psiscoe@telusplanet.net in Calgary has an Excel Vent Free tankless gas water heater unit installed in his 1967 Airstream trailer. He can give you some feedback on the unit
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