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Water Heater Replacement


Santi_78342

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DIY or not?

My water heater is on its last leg and I'm leaning towards hiring it out, but wanted to check with you guys if it's easily replaceable myself.

Anyone with lots of knowledge recommend a certain 40 gallon model I should look at either way?

Thanks

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Yeah the gold standard is Bradford White heaters. Is it gas or electric? They can be easy, not to brag, but I started replacing heaters when I was 15. I've learned a lot over the years, and now I try and make it as easy as possible for myself, using shark fittings from HD. Hardest part is getting the old one out place and the new one in. Then just a few simple hand tools. And a little YouTube knowledge. But if your the least uncomfortable with working with gas or electric. Then you want to hire someone.

John, Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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Hard to say, with all the high efficiency stuff now a days and everything being eco friendly, You may just want to hire it out, not saying you couldn't handle it but sometimes stuff like that is best left for the guy who does it 40 hours a week.

Yes I agree lol!

 

You didn't say whether it's electric or gas, are you on town water or out in the country? You said 40 gallon, so I'm assuming it's gas, because most gas are 40, most electric are 50.

 

We sold Rheem Classic series, but have switched to Bradford White, I don't really know the difference between the two, if you look at the manufacturers label, the tank is probably made by someone other than the name on the tank, it's kind of a mash-up. If you're going with a 40 gallon, and have already made up your mind, then make sure they at least have a 6 year warranty on them for the conventional one.

 

Or....

The one brand that carries a lifetime warranty is a stainless steel tank and elements, made by HTP, we sell a few here and there. Look them up, see what you like for prices and features, etc....

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Sorry guys. 40 gallon gas power vented. I have a state right now but am open to any brand as long as it will last. I'll look into Bradford White.

I am a little uncomfortable working with gas, but only because I never have before. If it means I can save $$$, I'll get comfortable with it. I think I'll watch a couple YouTube videos on the subject.

If Glassey can replace a water heater at 15...I'm pretty sure I can do it at 24. ;)

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State used to be good, now not so much.

If the space you have it in now is cramped, make sure new one fits, last year they bulked up water heaters with extra insulation to meet 2015 mandates.

To make things easy, John mentioned shark bite fittings, not a bad idea, you can get flex lines to fit on the 3/4" nipples coming out of the water heater, with shark bite ends. If you want to make it look sharp and square, then go solid pipe.

Check your local code, do you need it inspected or an expansion tank added?

Hope this helps!

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State used to be good, now not so much.

If the space you have it in now is cramped, make sure new one fits, last year they bulked up water heaters with extra insulation to meet 2015 mandates.

To make things easy, John mentioned shark bite fittings, not a bad idea, you can get flex lines to fit on the 3/4" nipples coming out of the water heater, with shark bite ends. If you want to make it look sharp and square, then go solid pipe.

Check your local code, do you need it inspected or an expansion tank added?

Hope this helps!

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A.O Smith owns State now, there made in the same factory. I don't see that much State heaters here,why do you say there no good. I think they are made a little cheaper than A.O Smith or so I heard. The new Naeca 3 standards have made water heater change outs hell, I have to down size the heater a lot. I strongly believe A.O Smith makes the best heaters and Bradford White is second place.

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If it was me. I would replace it with an on demand water heater. It was the best thing I ever did.

Same here, tankless. Just make sure to flush it out every year or sooner.

It is primarily all the electric water heaters that are a disappointment, there hasn't been one brand that I haven't had to change out under warranty from the tank leaking, maybe just the bad water here (high sulfer). Then there's the short life span they have anymore, not just State come to think of it, guess I can't knock them too bad. It's not uncommon for someone to have two electric water heater replacements within 15 years.

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I am not expert but I did sleep in my bed last night so here is my 2 cents

 

If you have clean town water then Tankless would be a great option if you have well water that has sediment or see staining around faucets I'd stay away from the Tankless or I'd recommend remedying the water issue with some filters. I would replace this myself but with that said it's a little more complex than a standard Hot water tank

 

If you want a straight swap with another tank I would DIY it, I just replaced my propane tank with a Hybrid Electric, I wanted to get rid of the vent as it took up space in the basement, so my original options were either a direct vent (would need to cut new holes in my freshly sided house) or convert to electric and not worry about venting, end of the day went hybrid electric for 2 reasons, one electric company gave me a $500 rebate and the Energy "cost" was half that of the propane so figured it was a win win.

 

Replacing if you can do some basic plumbing (worst case) and a little wrenching this would be a quick straight forward swap with the proper hoses and fittings

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Everything is easy when you know how to do it. The opposite is unfortunately true also. Removing your old one and putting in a new one can be a major pain. Your money situation will dictate. If you can afford it I would let someone that is experienced do it. That's just the way I would do it.

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RC I agree, if you are uncomfortable with the idea of sweating pipes, plumbing and can afford to pay a plumber just pay the guy for a piece of mind. Also since your dealing with gas I would also highly recommend hiring a guy if you has some doubts of your ability as you don't want no leaks.

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Josh I agree shark bites are the great, but call me old fashion but I like sweated pipes and threads shark bites just freak me out but I've used them and they seem to hold so far.

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Know what you mean!

Had a costumer provide his own fittings when plumbing his newly remodeled house but they weren't shark bite brand and they actually failed! Flooded his whole bathroom upstairs and down! But I was off the hook, he signed for it

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Know what you mean!

Had a costumer provide his own fittings when plumbing his newly remodeled house but they weren't shark bite brand and they actually failed! Flooded his whole bathroom upstairs and down! But I was off the hook, he signed for it

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I see a bunch floods every year and there's really no way to prevent them things just break out of the blue. I've seen solder joints that are over 50 years old just pop off one day. Water makes the most damage in a house even worse than fires sometimes, just make sure you have good insurance!! 

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Being a gas, I would look into getting  a tankless. They come with a higher price and a fair amount more work to get them going. 

There is a decent chance the gas line won't be big enough. 

 

The cheapest and easiest would be to stay with the tanked water heater. Being a gas, I would consider hiring it done. Not saying you couldn't handle it, but there are several factors that make it a little more challenging.

 

At work, we sell A.O. Smith. We've sold some Rheemes. Installed customer supplied ones from big box stores. They all seem to be close in quality. In this day and age of a throw away society, we always tell customers they should work great, but there's always the chance they may only last a month or one year. 

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It depends on how yours is setup,I helped my dad replace his last year,it was fairly easy. His was way way old,put in a nice new Rheem got it at HD on sale for like $400. My old mans was in the garage which is common around here so it was easy to get out and such.

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At work, we sell A.O. Smith. We've sold some Rheemes. Installed customer supplied ones from big box stores. They all seem to be close in quality. In this day and age of a throw away society, we always tell customers they should work great, but there's always the chance they may only last a month or one year.

Sadly this is our experience as well. Maybe they thinned out the glass liner to stay competitive.... Only thing that has done is make people look harder at tankless, and thats what we're seeing. We sell Navien, we feel is the best, and has the most to offer. We can combine a customer's hot water heating system (replacing a boiler) plus their domestic hot water, the Navien combi unit is one slick set up.

Last I checked they have a 15 year heat exchanger warranty too.

What did you end up doing @Santi_78342 ?

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On this topic, I put another tankless water heater in yesterday, and a tank one today.

Tankless replaced a two year old power vent tank unit, not sure the reason why they wanted to replace a perfectly good one but whatever.

Got to use my rotary hammer on poured foundation this time, it just about pulls itself into the concrete it feels like, it's that effortless. I was use to using a hammer drill for tapcon holes before, so this was a dream.

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Venting turned out perfect, the existing vent was 3" so I just used a concentric vent to the outside and joined the two 2" intake and exhaust to that.

Sorry I didnt get a finished picture, completely forgot about it.

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I've replaced an A.O. Smith gas powered unit at work twice in two years. The thing stops holding water after about a year consistently. The heater is a ridiculous lump of cash and works fantastic untill it stopped holding water. First time it wasn't covered, second time they warrantied it. They sent out company reps to inspect the installation and location and said it was ideal so it wasn't on our end. We're talking about 1 1/2" pex lines with the big Milwaukee expansion tool. The worst part is those things weigh a ridiculous amount and you have to drag the old one out to the store and the new one in.

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