50 Gal Gas Water Heater, Help Me With These Questions, Please!


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Old 02-27-14, 03:51 PM
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50 Gal Gas Water Heater, Help Me With These Questions, Please!

After searching for a while, I now focus on the GE "SG50T12TVT" which is energy star rated, 12 year warranty, with a reasonable price at Home Depot, and qualified for local rebate. Anyone has experience with this model? There are still questions that I really need your advice as follows.

1) Energy star rated vs non-energy star rated
2) Flammable Vapor Sensor System necessary?
3) Atmospheric vs Power vent

Thanks!
 
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Old 02-28-14, 12:11 AM
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Energy star rated will mean slightly lower operating costs. It is mostly achieved with thicker insulation between the tank and the sheet metal "wrapper". Adding a water heater blanket can achieve a similar but slightly lower savings to a non-energy star heater.

FVIR (flammable vapor ignition resistant) is not an option, it is required by federal law on all residential water heaters of less than 75 gallon tank capacity.

Power vent is used when there is no chimney to vent the products of combustion. There will be a slight savings in "standby losses" (heat up the chimney) during times when the burner is not firing but these "savings" will also be negated by the electricity used to power the venting fan. Also, an atmospheric burner requires no electricity to operate and will work fine during electrical power outages that will stop a power vent cold. In my opinion if you have a chimney then the atmospheric burner is a no brainer.
 
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Old 02-28-14, 02:16 PM
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Thank you so much, Furd! I now got a much more clear picture. I just think of another question which I also need your help with. Last week, I called a local plumbing service to have a free estimate. The plumber quoted me a replacement cost at $750! not including the water heater. He pointed out that the reason that casued my exsting Rheem "22V50F1" water heater leaking after 8 years is that both the cold and hot water used copper pipes. According to him, the connection should be replaced with stainless steel ones. Is this right? Now, I want to do the replacement by my own. How should I deal with this issue?
 
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Old 02-28-14, 05:34 PM
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The new units all , as far as I know, come with dielectric nipples already installed. No more issues with dis similar metals.

I install and use AO smith only. My preferred brand...

You can get at your local Ferguson dealer. 40 gal runs about $350 or so....
 
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Old 02-28-14, 06:51 PM
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According to him, the connection should be replaced with stainless steel ones.
That makes no sense at all to me.
 
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Old 02-28-14, 08:27 PM
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Thanks to lawrosa! That put my heart at ease.

I went to a Home Depot last night, ready to place the special order for the model "SG50T12TVT" as it shows on their website. However, I ended up with nothing as they told me they couldn't find it in the system! I have to start searching again for a proper one, with 12-year warranty, no power needed, energy efficient model. But got another series of questions.

- What is the difference between "powered flue damper" and " powered vent"?
- With "powered flue damper", what happens during a power outage?
- Recommendations for a 50 gallon natural gas, tall water heater are welcome.

Thanks.
 
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Old 02-28-14, 08:39 PM
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AO smith is what I recommend..

A flue damper closes to save heat from escaping when the heater is not firing...( Dont get that IMO)

Power vent blows the exhaust out the vent to the outside... ( More stuff to go wrong. Need those when no standard chimney/flue in home)
 
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Old 02-28-14, 08:40 PM
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What Is a Dielectric Nipple?

Brass nipples are best IMO, but heaters now come with the dielectrics installed...
 
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Old 02-28-14, 08:44 PM
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Here is what I recommend.

ProMax® 40-Gallon Gas Water Heater | A. O. Smith Water Heaters

Get here... call for pricing. (plumbing) Ferguson.

Locations Finder
 
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Old 03-01-14, 04:43 PM
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Thanks again for the advice and recommendation. However, I need a 50 gallon model. I did search all the main brands on the market. At the beginning, I wanted to buy the energy star rated model, but it's so hard to find a proper one, either pricey, power operated, or with other unacceptable points. It seems that the conventional (non-energy star certified) models are still the main stream. Based on the findings, I think that the most easy way for me might be to just buy the exact same model I'm using now - the Rheem 22V50F1, which still having a high rating online. The only disadvantage of this model is the 6-year warranty. The existing one started leaking 8 years after installation. Any opinion?
 
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Old 03-01-14, 06:47 PM
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The is the most eff atmospheric vent you can buy from what I know.. .70 EF... Subject to rebates too.. too..

Effex® High Efficiency 50-Gallon Gas Water Heater | A. O. Smith Water Heaters

If you want eff and warranty then the conservationist is best..

10 yr parts and tank warranty. .62 EF

Conservationist® Maximum Energy Efficiency 50-Gallon Gas Water Heater | A. O. Smith Water Heaters
 
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Old 03-01-14, 07:56 PM
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Yeah! It's on my research list. But I'm concerned about the noise that brought by the blower. Also it's equipped with the "Powered Anode" and "electronic ignition". There features make it non-workable when power outage happens.
 
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Old 03-03-14, 12:49 AM
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The following is MY OPINION!

The self cleaning dip tube costs the manufacturer somewhere between nothing and a dollar. I see no reason to spend a significant increase for it. There is no difference in the tank between the shortest and the longest guarantee. The additional cost for the longer guarantee is simply an added insurance premium with the manufacturer betting against the consumer that the tank will last through the guarantee period. I advise getting the shortest guarantee and saving that extra money for eventual replacement. Performing the least little bit of maintenance on a tank-type heater and you should get at least ten years of service UNLESS you have VERY aggressive water.

On a new tank-type heater you want to replace the drain valve with a brass nipple and ball valve. Flush the tank at least once (twice is better) a year if you have average water and quarterly if you have bad water. After the second year in service remove and inspect the anode rod. If it is more than half eaten away replace it. Check it again in two years and so forth. These two things will do more good in ensuring a long life than any guarantee.

If you don't need a power vent (i.e. you have a chimney) then don't even consider anything but an atmospheric burner with a pilot light. The difference in efficiency between the least efficient and the most efficient in this category is maybe 5% and that can be recovered to a significant amount by properly installing a blanket insulator. Follow the instructions on keeping the air filter clean and you should have no problems. IF you can get the higher efficiency unit (just thicker insulation between the tank and the sheet metal wrapper) with the shorter warranty that IS the most efficient use of capital.
 
 

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