Dual AO Smith 50 gal Vented Gas Installation - Options?

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by stephenson, Dec 2, 2011.

  1. stephenson

    stephenson New Member

    Messages:
    69
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Assisting neighbor - large house (about 6000 SF) ... has two, 10 year old AO Smith 50 gallon natural gas "Energy Saver" (model FPSH 50 236) tanks run in series ...both power vented. One water casing just failed.

    I'm not convinced the dual system is the best solution ... options:
    1. Replace the one unit
    2. Replace both units and maintain the stepped heating approach
    3. Replace both 50 gallon with one 75 gallon

    What makes sense? If option 3 best bet, which AO Smith (easier sourcing) unit is best application - homeowner will be in house for about 3-5 years.

    Thanks!
  2. stephenson

    stephenson New Member

    Messages:
    69
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Did I ask in the wrong sub-forum?

    Any opinions?

    Thanks!!
  3. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,236
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    The first question is how much hot water do they need? If they have a big whirlpool tub or 4 people taking consecutive showers, then they need that and maybe more. Depending on the purity of the water there, replacing both with a tankless might be a better approach.
  4. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    You would need multiples or a monster tankless to provide hot water for a 6000 sq ft house with presumably 4 to 6 bathrooms, 2 kitchens and 2 laundries!
  5. install a rheem

    tear them both out and install a Rheem Pro 75 gallon gas water heater
    it will do the same work load .... turned up on mid range.....

    you probably will save a few hundred on the gas bill per year and the 75 becsue you are heating less water and less space exposed to ambient air and the heat going out of the chimmny


    the 75 will do the exact same job that the 2 50s
    will do becasue they never will draw properly anyway

    that is the easy way... and if it dont work,
    then just throw in a 40 gallon gas in series with the 75.......
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2011
  6. stephenson

    stephenson New Member

    Messages:
    69
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Thanks to all - she opted for the 75 gallon AO Smith replacement for the stepped 50 gallon tanks ... had plenty of space so no issue either way. The 75 gallon solution specs out with plenty of initial output with pretty fast regen. Power vented via 3" PVC per installation instructions - the 50s used 2" so that was a bit of a change and a couple of hours. If there are any issues, will status.
  7. Chad Schloss

    Chad Schloss Member

    Messages:
    328
    Location:
    USA
    why does everyone need that many water heaters? we have one rheem 40 gal powervent. 3 bathrooms, two laundries, two kitchens 4 bedrooms. two people can shower at once. 3rd can shower after and still have enough water for a 10 min shower. maybe i just don't understand... :(
  8. mtcummins

    mtcummins In the Trades

    Messages:
    380
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    Yeah, I don't really get it either... I have an AO Smith 50 gallon 76,000 btu powervent that feeds 2.5 bathrooms, kitchen, laundry, and heats the whole house through the radiant floors. I've never run out of hot water.
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