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    susangibbs's Avatar
    susangibbs Posts: 2, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Nov 1, 2009, 09:16 AM
    Do I replace a 50 gal tank HOt water heater or go TANKLESS, if so what brand
    I don't know what to do about purchasing and installing a new hot water heater. I don't know whether to go with tradtiional hot water heater replacement or tankless. I am in the mountains at 6000 feet. It would free up a closet area, but more venting etc.

    IF I get tankless which is best Bosch or Norvitz?
    Milo Dolezal's Avatar
    Milo Dolezal Posts: 7,192, Reputation: 523
    Plumbing Expert

    Nov 1, 2009, 11:00 AM

    Switching from conventional hot water hater to tankless hot water heater is not as easy as just swapping one unit for another. First, tankless heater requires some pipe relocating. Then, you cannot use your old vent. Third, and the most important issue, is gas. Tankless heaters have variable BTU consumption that ranges from 19,000 Btu's to 200,000 Btu's. ( Your old heater has set consumption limit at about 33,000 Btu's ).

    If you are close to the main gas meter, than you are half way there. You can run dedicated gas line to your closet. Then you decide whether you want to use the exterior tankless or interior tankless. Than start thinking how you going to run your vent. Relocating hot and cold water is the least of the problem. Also, you will need an electrical outlet to plug it in.

    You should also know what brand of tankless you want to use. The major one are: Rinnai, Takagi, Noritz, Bosh, Rheem, Bradford White, Aquastar and Nuvieen... It is my opinion that Rinnai and Noritz are very good brands.

    So, there are few things to consider before you do the switch-over. Yes, it can be done but more complicated it gets, the more it costs. Gas is usually the biggest problem and expense. I would suggest that you call few plumbers to give you free estimate and to discuss the installation. They will tell you right away where you stand.

    While the start up cost is high - the benefits are unsurpassed. Not only you will save energy, you will switch from century-plus old technology to present one. And that's something !

    Good luck... Let us know how you did... Milo
    ballengerb1's Avatar
    ballengerb1 Posts: 27,379, Reputation: 2280
    Home Repair & Remodeling Expert

    Nov 1, 2009, 05:38 PM

    All correct but you could consider going with an electric unit and skip several of the problems. Here are my numbers; replace an existing standard 40 gallon tank is a DIY job for under $450. A new tankless unit will run from $700 to $1500 just for the unit. Go with gas and the termination kit can cost $250, go electric and a new disconnect box and wire can run $200 but may not be a DIY projet depending on skills. Pay a plumber to insrall either would be $700 approx. Some tankless brands will not warranty their product unless you have one of their authorized installers do the job. Lots to consider

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