Water Heater Morass
Hi all. I’m in the midst of a seemingly one-step forward one-step back basement renovation. On the “step-back” side, our water heater is nearing the end of it’s life. From what a can glean from the label/internet, It’s a ~10 year old AO Smith, .54, 60,000BTU, 48 gallon tank, with a stated 90-gallon 1st hour rating and 61 gallon recovery rate. We’re a family of four (with a 4 and 2 year old) in a 2 bath (probably soon to be 3) house in mid-Ohio with a detached garage.
I’ve read a lot on the site and following Martin’s decision tree (http://www.finehomebuilding.com/design/articles/the-water-heater-payoff.aspx), our target should be a sealed combustion or direct (or power) vent gas model, probably 75 gallon with an eye towards our kids getting bigger and based on the performance of the existing model.
I’m leaning towards a direct vent model, but had a few questions:
-We have an $800 incentive ($500 rebate and $300 tax credit) for the purchase of a hybrid water heater. We have a 300-400 sf storage/utility room in our basement where we could locate the unit. It’s a low ceiling (6’10”), so it might be tight to fit an 80-gallon unit, but we could probably make it work. With the incentives, the cost of the HPWH will be less than the equivalently sized direct vent gas model. Does the pricing start shifting the analysis between gas/electric? Taken with a large grain of salt, the annual “cost to operate” estimates from the manufacturers look pretty equivalent.
-Does anyone have an opinion on the Rinnai RH180 (https://www.rinnai.us/hybrid-tank-tankless-water-heater/product/rh180)? It’s a 40-gallon tank/tankless combo. I’m trying to get a handle on whether it’s the best/worst of both worlds. I’m not seeing much in the way of reviews, so thought I’d see if anyone has experience with it.
If anyone has thoughts/comments/product recommendations, I’d love to hear them. Thanks.
GBA Detail Library
A collection of one thousand construction details organized by climate and house part