Tankless/On Demand Hot water Heater

Does anyone have this gadget???

We need to replace our hotwater heater, which is leaking constantly and therefore, running all the time! And I came across these in my online research and was curious to see if they are as cool in real life as the manufacturers claim them to be.

We are above (barely) the Mason-Dixon...so we are looking at colder water temperatures from about November to April....but the makers seem to say that with the higher end models that we'd be Ok...

what says the forum?


  • 29 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • First, why would you want to heat your "hot" water? A couple years ago our church put on a new addition including rest rooms and a large nursery. We installed the On Demand Hot Water system. It works very well, and being in NY, we are even further north than you are.
  • First, for more than several reasons, you should live below the Mason-Dixon line. x:-)

    Second, I am delighted that Ray's church now has indoor plumbing. x:D

    When I was a little boy, visiting one of my grandmothers, I learned that 'on demand water systems' meant nothing more than her telling one of the older boys to get his butt out the door and bring pump water. :oo
  • Yeah, but we still use Sears catalogs.
  • A good friend of mine got one of these and she is thrilled with it. She had remodeled her bathroom and installed a Jacuzzi tub, but could never fill it with enough hot water to enjoy it. Now she has unlimited on-demand hot water and couldn't be happier with it. In addition, you'll save $$ on the water that you run and run waiting for it to get hot, and on the fuel it takes to keep a big tank of water hot. I say, go for it! Also, check to see if your city or fuel/water provider offers rebates. I got back $150 for buying a front-loading washer which, by the way, I love.
  • Forgive me if I'm hijacking the thread, but - what brand of front-load washer did you buy? I have a set of Maytag Neptunes & they SUCK! I have never seen clothes come out of a washer so wrinkled in my life & they don't fall out in the dryer. I have never spent so much for something I ended up disliking so badly!
  • I bought Whirlpool. I can't say for sure whether the wrinkling is worse because I'm terrible about taking things out of the dryer in a timely fashion, so most everything is wrinkled beyond recognition anyway. And I haven't noticed what stuff looks like between washer and dryer. But when I think about how these things work, I can see how they could create more wrinkling. On the other hand, I do appreciate how my underthings (which I'm far too lazy to handwash) aren't tied in knots.

    Maybe Maytag customer service can offer some assistance. If you've already tried that, I'd be interested to hear what they said.

    (Uh-oh, I just remembered that my sister bought a front-loader on my advice and got a Maytag. She refuses to either iron or take things to the cleaners, so I might be in BIG trouble.)
  • Several people seemed to think this was an odd problem - we did call Maytag & they pretty much told us to stick it. I was quite surprised. We had one other opportunity to call them - the motherboard in the washer went out a month or so after we bought them - they came right out & replaced it, so I was surprised to get that reaction from them.

    I've learned a couple of things to help this- turn pants & collared shirts inside out & shake them out very well before placing in the dryer. Isn't perfect, but helps. I have to be right on top of the dryer to hang up & fold - otherwise it's iron-city...
  • Forumites take note: get a Whirlpool and get the knots out of your 'underthings'. Finally, advice I can really use. Thanks Whirlyone.
  • We bought a front loading washer last year and it is great. I didn't know about rebates with the power company...I'll have to check into that.
  • Pardon my ignorance, but, at what point is this water heated? To run hot, water at some point must come into contact with a heat source. If there is no tank, when does the supply line get introduced to the heat source?

    Ray, Sears doesn't produce those catalogs anymore. And the JC Penney ink will....never mind.
  • "When a hot water faucet is turned on and the water begins to flow, a sensor detects that hot water is being demanded. The water flows across the internal heat exchanger and exits the unit at the desired temperature. The tankless water heater will remain on until the hot water faucet is closed."

    So, in principle it works much like the radiator in your car/truck only in the reverse. A car radiator is a heat exchanger - as the water flows through it, heat is dissipated sending cooler water into the engine. With the On Demand Hot Water Heater, the water flows over the exchanger and heat is transferred to the water resulting in hot water flowing from the tap. The only time energy is used is when the tap is opened.

    And the JC Penney ink will... remind you of Don.
  • We have a tankless water heater. Its 10 years old and we love it. We have never had a problem with having enough hot water. No problems with New England weather (and we are on the water with a brisk north-west wind). Ours is a Weild-McLean (or something like that), it is integrated with the boiler (there are some stand alone units). The only warning is that they need to be replaced every 10 - 15 years. Because the water comes in at 40 and leaves at 200, the fast temperature change causes the minerals to plug the coils and eventually eat them away. We haven't had it happen yet, but were told when it does, it can be replaced within the day. We have an older Neptune (limited electronics) and don't have a problem with wrinkles. Hubby has it at work (family business) and does the laundry between customers. It comes out well and he does a minimum of ironing. (Although he did get himself a really nice Rowenta).
  • Hubby has it at
    >work (family business) and does the laundry
    >between customers. It comes out well and he does
    >a minimum of ironing. (Although he did get
    >himself a really nice Rowenta).

    Please don't post this kind of stuff. It will give other women ideas!! Tell us you were joking. A check is on the way.

  • Don, you live close enough, you could run home at lunch and do the laundry.
  • Ray, you are an evil, evil man!!!! x}>
  • True confession time: I have been doing all of the ironing in my family for 20 years. And I also have a top of the line stainless steel plated Rowenta steam iron. My wife will not let me or our boys near the laundry. All you have to do is turn a few loads pink and shrink an item or two and you find yourself permanently banned from the laundry room. I must give my wife, or my trophy wife as our boys are now calling her, credit as she now has our two boys (12 & 15) preparing all of our evening meals Monday - Friday and of course they also have the responsibility of all the dish washing and putting them up in the cabinets along with their other chores. They should make a couple of future daughter-in-laws very happy with their domestic abilities.
  • But any future son-in-law will surely be jolted when he sees you in an apron, whistling away and ironing, watching Oprah.

    Ray...you got time to tell me how to build a swiss watch? You did good on the water heater thing. Do you have a 'call-in show'?
  • Male Forumites, take note: Dutch does all the family ironing AND he has a Trophy Wife. There's a connection between these two facts; get it?
  • How old are your boys? I have a domestically challenged daughter I'd like them to meet some day.
  • Forgive my crazy question, but everytime I turned on hot water this weekend, I was thinking about this. Truly!

    Is there one heating source which then directs water to each faucet in the house on demand, or one heating source at each faucet?

    Somewhere in this post, someone commented about not having to run the water to heat up, thus saving water. Unless there's a heat source at each faucet, you'd still have to run water, wouldn't you?

    And how expensive is this heat source setup?
  • There are several different sizes of these gadgets...some people add one for the sole purpose of heating water to fill one of those giant garden tubs....

    We're looking at getting one as a replacement for our hot water tank, which supplies the whole house.

    It seems that you don't have to run SO MUCH water to get to the stuff that's hot. You'll still have to run through what is laying in the pipes.

    The real savings seems to be not using electric (propane/gas) to continue to try to keep a tank of water hot when you don't need it. This system heats water "on demand"...so less energy is wasted.

    The other plus that I can see is that this unit can't leak...which is a problem we're currently having with the tank to be replaced. These also take up much less space...some even hang on a wall!!!

  • deniseE

    My husband's a plumber, we will be building a new house next spring and will be installing HWOD - here is why, according to hubby: it saves alot of money over time (as stated - not heating water that just sits there), depending on how your layout you conserve water since it is instantly hot. The new models that they have developed the last few years have really improved and are able to handle multi faucets and distances. I think you will really like it if you go that route.
  • Two quick answers:
    1. I looked into a Tankless system last year and learned that it works well, but has a higher installation cost. I opted for a regular hot water heater.
    2. Interesting comments about the Maytag neptune front loaded washer. When my Wife purchased the unit in 2000 - $1,000 +. I asked if it folded the clothes, etc. We had a service call after 1 day. Just yesterday, we received a letter concerning a class action suit against Maytag for all purchasers of the washer.
  • Well, Bill, on the other hand, how's the toaster oven working?
  • This has been a great discussion. We are going to rebuild our barn that was lost to Frances (actually Charley started the job, but Frances finished it. I was kind of hoping the outer edges of Ivan would visit to carry what remains away - not really, just a masochistic thought).

    We didn't have a hot water heater in our old barn but the on demand heaters sound great. And the ones made for RVs are really not that expensive and look easy to hook up for our barn - looks more complicated for the house.
  • But will the cows and horses be able to learn how to operate this thing?

    We're installing a regular old hotwater tank.

    After calling around to various home-improvement stores and plumbers....we were told that because we only have an electric hook-up...the technology just isn't there yet to make it worthwhile. They do have smaller ones designed for just a garden tub or something that would be OK...but not for a whole house.

    We talked about ordering on-line and installing it...but were concerned about getting a service call if one was ever needed.

    The guy installing the one we finally decided on said that by the time this one goes, we should be able to affordably do a tankless model. He also said that if we lived in a warmer climate, it would be easy to do...but our winters can be brutal...

    Thank you for all your input!!!!!

  • >But will the cows and horses be able to learn
    >how to operate this thing?

    You would be surprised at what they can do. We had one horse who would turn on the spigot to the water trough. We'd wake up to a flooded pasture area thinking my son had forgotten (typical teen) or one of our neighbors was being a jerk (but they're all pretty nice). Then I got up early one morning and saw the horse turning the spigot with his muzzle!

    Working the hot water heater shouldn't be a problem. :)
  • I love my tankless water heater. It works great. I bought my first house 2 years ago and it had been recently installed. My parents always had a hot water tank. Now they are building a house and are looking into the tankless water heater. I compared a bill to my parent's and my bill was actually a bit less. I don't know the installation price, sorry.
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