It has been about two years since our tankless water heater installation, and I wanted to share a plumber’s experience.
First off, we can’t imagine life without our tankless water heater and our tankless water heater has honestly improved our quality of life. There are three of us in the home, and we used to have a 40-gallon water heater that constantly ran out of hot water. Every morning, one of us was getting cold water about halfway through our shower. It was a miserable way to start out the morning, and cold showers were truly having a negative impact on our life.
After two years of using a tankless water heater, it is hard to remember how it used to be. The first week, we were taking 30-minute showers, sometimes nearly passing out from the steam accumulation (which we eventually solved by adding a teak bench to the shower for a place the sit during moments of dizziness). It is a joy not having to worry about running out of hot water or who is taking a shower and when.
We also added a WIFI control module that allows us to control the temperature, see our current flow rate and gas usage, and turn off the recirculation system (from the road on my iPhone) on our way out of town. We have a Navien 240ANG, a model with a built-in recirculating pump.
One of the features we like most about the unit is that it has a smart mode that learns our daily showering patterns and automatically turns on the recirculation pump minutes before we typically use hot water so that we never have to wait on hot water from the heater that is located 50 feet away from our shower.
One complaint we hear from people switching to a tankless water heater is that it takes five minutes to get hot water. This is due to their home not having a dedicated return line for the hot water to recirculate. Sometimes it is not feasible/cost prohibitive to retrofit a home with a recirculating line due to walls, slabs, ceilings being in the way, etc.
We have been putting in a lot of the new Rinnai Sensei units lately. These unit come with a WIFI module (that connects with Amazon Alexa) as well as a valve that solves this problem. We install this valve on the farthest fixture from your water heater (usually on a lavatory sink) and this valve turns your cold-water line into a hot water recirculating line. This makes it so that you don’t have to wait two minutes for the hot water to arrive at your shower. The only drawback is that you may get warm water out of the cold side of the faucet the valve is installed on. Most people would rather have a tankless water heater with immediate hot water and happily accept this trade-off.
Another perk is the $500 rebate check we received from CenterPoint energy for installing a natural gas unit. The NWA rebate is $300 through black hills energy.
Not sold yet? Ray Lusk Plumbing also offers interest-free financing options that make a tankless water heater affordable for almost any budget.
Call today for a free in-home estimate on a tankless water heater.
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