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Tractor Talk Discussion Board

Re: Another water heater question.

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Posted by MarkB_MI on January 20, 2014 at 03:09:50 from (

In Reply to: Another water heater question. posted by Steve@Advance on January 19, 2014 at 20:51:49:

Hmm. Since you've already decided to trash the old heater, what do you have to lose by changing out the element? You gotta drain it to move it, anyway.

A tankless heater saves money, in theory, because it doesn't need to keep 40 or 50 gallons of water hot all the time. But there are other ways to save cost with an electric heater. See if your power company offers interruptible water heater service; you pay a much cheaper rate in exchange for letting the utility cut your service for a few minutes out of the hour during peak demand. Or, if nobody is home during the day, consider putting the water heater on a timer.

You are wise to be concerned about your 200 amp service being adequate to handle a 27 kW water heater. Just the furnace and water heater alone will have you service nearly tapped out. You're likely to see lights dimming when the water heater kicks in, even if it doesn't trip your main. You could go with a slightly smaller unit; I see Rheem offers two 5 gpm units, one 27 kw and another rated at 18 kw/75 amps. The latter seems more reasonable, but I'd still be concerned. If it was my house, I'd stick with a conventional water heater.


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