I think its time to make my chimney a purely decorative item. The newer
furnace already vents out the wall, leaving only the old (10+ years)
hot water heater still connected to the chimney.
This summer, we are going to replace the roof, so this would be a good
time to cap the chimney and get a new wall-vented hot water heater. I
really can't find much information about them, but i do know that they
are more expensive.
What experience/advice do you have regarding this type of water heater?
Any particular recommended brands, cautions, or thoughts on my
reasoning are welcome.
GOOGLE State Industries, or Rheem.
for their Power Vent heaters or Direct Wall vent.
I like the Power Vent because of the flexibility
in where you can locate the heater. The exhaust
is at quite a low temp, which says that eff is high.
Before you get in too deep, ask your local bldg
inspector what requirements have to be met, especially
with regard to spacing of vent from windows, etc.
They ARE noisy; some of them have a draft inducer fan
that wails like a banshee. One fix for that is to add
a 24 Hr timer which prohibits it running at inconvenient
times. You can also use the timer to increase savings
by not running at night.
The controls are far more complex than a std heater and
repair costs are high (if needed). Check what the
warranty actually covers.
If you are replacing the roof, you may want to tear down the chimney to
below the roof sheathing and roof right over the chimney, and in the bottom
of the chimney, plug all equipment connections with masonry to prevent
I have a GSW direct vent and I like it fine, but it's only a few months
old. It has no fan, so requires no electricity and is not noisy. The
direct vent can't be very long, so the unit needs to be near a wall
where you can fit a largish vent outside.
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