20 gal programmable water heater?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Alice In TX/MO, Nov 14, 2017 at 11:54 PM.

  1. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    I am looking for a water heater for a small house I am building.

    I can’t install a tankless water heater due to several factors.

    I would like a 20-30 gallon water heater that is programmable so that it isn’t heating in the middle of the night. After a couple of hours of internet research, I am frustrated. Looks like it is either/or. I can find a 20 gallon heater, and I can find a programmable heater, but I haven’t yet found those two features in one appliance.

    Anyone know of a brand that offers those features together?
     
  2. meiere

    meiere Well-Known Member

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    What are the reasons for not wanting a tankless?
    Modern water heaters are insulated very well. I would imagine that the savings of not running, and then having bring back up to temp would be very small and offset by the added expense of a programmable one
     
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  3. Bearfootfarm

    Bearfootfarm Hello, hello....is there anybody in there.....? Supporter

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  4. hunter63

    hunter63 Well-Known Member

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    Yup...I agree....add insulation to the heater ....if it's a concern.

    We have a 30 gal at "The Place"... electric....
    Not Scientific....we tried turning on and off....mostly off....switched on for the day's dishes and showers...then shut down again......
    vs
    Leaving it run .... it will cycle at what ever temp you want...no noticeable difference in KW hrs used.
    Electric back up base boards...really suck up the juice.
     
  5. bobp

    bobp Well-Known Member

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    There's a point of no return on this issue. Turning off a Hwh during non peak use is not a new concept. But it's a flawed concept at times.

    Once a well insulated HWH gets to temp, it shouldn't use very many kWh to maintain operating temperature. Especially in a heated environment.

    There will be less kWh used during the off/down period of course.
    But the KWH it takes to get a tank full of cold water back to operating temperature will negate the savings had a few hours before. Depending on the exact circumstances of course, it could end up using more kWh in the long run.
     
  6. Wolf mom

    Wolf mom Well-Known Member

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    I put a timer on my water heater when it was replaced. I set it to go off and on two times a day. An hour or so before I got up then it went off when I went to work. Turned itself back on when I came home, then off again when I went to bed. It was a 50 gal heater so I could fill my jacuzzi type tub. Was never without hot water and yes, it did save on electricity.
     
  7. anniew

    anniew keep it simple and honest Supporter

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    I use my circuit breaker. I turn the heater on first thing in the morning, then turn it off as soon as the heater reaches temperature....the hot water lasts all day.
     
  8. bobp

    bobp Well-Known Member

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    You'll spend more bringing a cold tank up to useable temp than simply leaving it alone. Your best bet is to invest in the most efficient HWH you can afford, such as some of the very efficient tankless models or a marathon... They're great HWHs with lifetime warranty ECT...
    The DOE estimates a family of 3 uses about 60 gallons of hot water a day. Which equates to about $200 or so a year

    If you look at thermal losses the ROI for installation of the control system don't pan out.
    Figuring losses.....
    1 therm = 100,000 btu's, divide that by the btu loss per hour and you will find out how many hours it takes each one to lose 1 therm.

    100,000 / 998 = 100.2 hours

    100,000 / 1148 = 87.1 hours

    So with the FCG-75 every 100.2 hours of sitting there costs you $1.42

    With the FCG-100 that same $1.42 happens every 87.1 hours.

    There are 8760 hours in a year.
    75 gal 87.6 (100 hour periods) x $1.42 = $125/yr
    100 gal 100 (87.6 hour periods)x $1.42 = $142/yr


    Calculation using 40 Gallon water heater:
    > Ordinary 40 gallon water heater in attic. Temperature in attic = 50° F. Temperature of water in tank = 50° F.
    > Water in tank weighs 333.6 lbs.
    > How much electricity is needed to raise temperature of full tank to 120° F.
    > 120° minus 50° = 70° > so the temperature needs to go up 70°
    > Multiply 333.6 x 70 x .0002931 = 6.84 Kwh

    Useful information
    .0002931 Kwh to raise 1 pound of water 1°F
    0.0024444 Kwh to raise 1 gallon of water 1°F
    0.146666 Kwh to raise 1 gallon of water 60°F (60-120°F)
    5.866689 Kwh to raise 40 gallons of water 60°F (60-120°F)
    1 Kw = 3413 BTU
    2.42 watt required to raise 1 gallon water 1 degree
    1 Kwh will raise 6.8 gallon water 60 degrees F
    8.33 BTU will raise 1 gallon of water 1 degree at 100% efficiency
    11 BTU required to raise 1 gallon of water 1 degree at 75% efficiency (gas)
    1 cubic foot natural gas = 1000 BTU
    1 therm 100,000 BTU or 100 cubic feet
    1 cubic foor propane = 2500 BTU
    1 gallon propane = 91,250 BTU
     
  9. meiere

    meiere Well-Known Member

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    How much do you save a month
     
  10. farmrbrown

    farmrbrown nobody

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    I put a timer on mine, a regular sized W/H, and wrapped with fiberglass R-13 insulation.
    Haven't rechecked the figures lately, but IIRC my electric bill dropped about $20 a month maybe a little more.
    It's set to be on about 6 hours a day, once in the morning and again in the evening, with an override switch if someone needs it on immediately. Even then in 20 minutes you're ready to shower or do laundry.

    I think the timer was about $40.
     
  11. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    The tankless would require an electric service upgrade to the house.

    The water is horribly hard. Local plumbers, water heater sales people, and septic folks do NOT recommend tankless here.
     
  12. empofuniv

    empofuniv Well-Known Member

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    We live in Pinal County AZ and tankless heaters are not recommended here either due to horrible water. And I'd really really like to have one because the master bath is on the opposite side of the house from the water heater and the pipes are routed through the ceiling area since house is on slab. Takes for ever to get hot water in the bathroom during winter and even have had the pipes freeze up and no water in back of house for 3 days one yr. Told Mr when we redo master bath I want enough electrical work in there to support a small microwave so I can heat up wet washcloths in the mornings and at night, and warm up water for the Water Pik too. This house was started in 1948 and I was told over the yrs if the owners had another baby or needed more space they just threw down another slab of concrete and added walls and roof. Our great room is where the farm equipment used to be parked. Not a true or straight line in the entire 3000sqf house, but it's got character!
     
  13. farmrbrown

    farmrbrown nobody

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    That's a good reason to point out, as I've had to do when asked to install some recently.
    They have advantages but require a LOT of amps to do it. If you have an older home with a smaller service like 100 or even 200 amps, adding one (or two if the bathrooms are far apart) takes up half the home's electrical service. If other improvements like additions or central air/heat are already in, it's not economically feasible when you factor in the service upgrade cost.
     
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  14. haypoint

    haypoint Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Insolate the tank. Turn the temp down ass low as you can stand it. In warm weather, set out a tub of water on a south facing porch. Change shower head to limit water. Lots of things to reduce cost of hot water. Mostly just nickel and dime stuff.
     
  15. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    Thanks for all the discussion.

    It is new 1700 sq ft construction with a 200 amp service. One bathroom.

    The hassle of dealing with the hard water is a more significant deterrent to the tankless water heater than the potential cost to upgrade the service.

    I am planning for as low maintenance as possible.