A home show on talk radio in our area discussed these last week. Said they're
great. However, they added that the cost to go from the regular water heater
to a tankless one would be about $600 for installation.
No 2 instals are the same Electric can require a new service and do
require 120a for a single use Bosch. Gas can require larger lines as
small units use 117000 btu and Takagi uses 188000 btu. Plus they are
wall mounted, plumbing and venting are changed. Install could be 200 -
2000 nobody can say
The storage tank heater is usually placed away from the wall and the exhaust
is routed to the chimney. The pipes and gas supply lines are in the wrong
positions for the conversion. With the tankless, the gas and water lines
have to be re-routed because the unit is usually wall mounted. In addition,
they may have to install a zero-clearance air intake/exhaust pipe through
the wall and cap off the chimney outlet. There's electrical installation
required for the ignitor and the remote may also need new wiring if it will
be located away from the tankless unit itself (kitchen or bathroom
location). That work will be more than a direct drop-in replacement which
Home Depot quotes.
Our current tank heater is about 2 feet from the wall so I figure
sweating in a few elbows and maybe 10 feet of copper tube and a few
feet of electrical isn't going to cost me $50 for an install. Not sure
how they come up with those installation charges, but the labor could
be the bulk of it. I don't think they would really "Have" to be wall
mounted if your current unit sits in the middle of a room. Just make a
little mock-up mounting platform and mount it to that if you want it to
remain in the same area.
The big problems are with electric you need to run very heavy cable
and probably will need a new service. With gas you'll probably need
larger diameter gas pipe and a different regulator to feed it. That's
the problem with on-demand heaters, they demand a lot of energy at
Very heavy cable= 220? Not much difference in cost on that gauge wire
from 110. New service? like a new breaker box or just a new breaker
added? Most people should have some additional amps left to use.
Besides, he is removing an electric tank heater so he would only
require the difference between the two, not the full amps.
Didn't mention gas, he wants electric. And the gas models can handle
just about any size of gas line since the orifice in the heater is
substantially smaller than the pipe anyway. Especially on LP.
Still don't see how putting one of these in costs anything over $150 in
Yes, very heavy cable. Looking at http://www.eemaxinc.com/ for a second,
I see several different models (depending on input temp and flow rate).
The smallest unit recommended for a house is their series two. This can
handle only 1 major outlet at a time. This unit requires 80 amps at 240 volts.
That current is supplied as two independent 40 amp circuits. And remember,
this is for a minimal system that is capable of supplying a single shower.
Their series three unit requires three 240 volt 40 amp circuits. I've lived
in some homes that didn't have a service large enough to supply that monster.
Makes me wonder how they can tout 50% reduced energy costs. Of course,
you would need to test it yourself to find out. The electric "tank"
heater runs continuously while the tankless only runs when needed. I
imagine something like this would cause energy concerns unless the
overall usage were subtantially smaller. I think someone mentioned in
another thread that they would hate to see the grid in California from
6-8am if everyone had one of these. Unless I see something from
consumer reports saying this is the way of the future, I think I will
stick with my tank. 26 years old and going strong, will the tankless
last that long?
John Cochran wrote:
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.