Indirect Water Heaters - what's the most reliable brand? And how much for install?

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by bronxer, Aug 12, 2010.

  1. bronxer

    bronxer DIY Junior Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Bronx, NY
    After tons of research, I finally decided on either Weil McLean or Triangle Tube. I'll be removing my old standard water heater and connecting up the indirect water heater to a Weil McLean CGA 7 gas boiler.
    My questions are: 1. Any info on these 2 brands - good or bad? 2. How much should a job like this cost - not including the cost of the water heater.
    I was quoted 2 prices so far- $1000 and $3000. Thats a big difference.



    I greatly appreciate any info you could supply me. Thanks in advance.
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2010
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,896
    Location:
    New England
    I've got a SuperStor Ultra. SS guts, long warranty. Any indirect should last a long time IF you don't have leaks in the heating path and don't need to add water frequently. Fresh water means oxygen, and that can lead to corrosion. The potable tank is treated for that condition, but the heating side usually isn't.

    The things to look at are the temp loss over time (a measure of the quality of the insulation), and first hour heating capacity. An indirect normally doesn't need to be as large as a conventional heater since it usually has a better recovery rate (the boiler is usually larger than a standalone tank heater), and it is better insulated. Also, often the tank is run at say 140-degrees with a tempering valve on the outlet, which makes it look like a larger tank.
  3. zl700

    zl700 DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    237
    Location:
    Texas
    Well ACV/Triangle Tube makes all tanks for Weil McLain so, very little difference in product besides color or cabinet on some upscale W/M models.

    Does that help?
  4. bronxer

    bronxer DIY Junior Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Bronx, NY
    Well, that explains why the two products look almost identical. My other question is regarding the cost of installation. Approximately how much should I expect it to cost to replace my old hot water heater with a Weil-Mclean? I know the parts involved aren't that much, but being quoted $3000 from Yost and Campbell just for the install really threw me for a loop. No, I would never pay that kind of money to install an Indirect Water heater. It would take almost 20 years to make up the cost of the install. That defeats the purpose of using an indirect water heater.

    So how much did any of you pay for your indirect water heater installation?
  5. zl700

    zl700 DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    237
    Location:
    Texas
    No way to guess cost.
    To many options size, extra valve versus pump, priority or not, 3/4, 1 or 1-1/4 piping (which has an effect on recovery and CA-AFUE efficiency.

    Go with the one that sounds informed
  6. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,329
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Local labor cost vary so widely that few plumber will even venture a guess sight unseen on any plumbing job.
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,896
    Location:
    New England
    Lots of variables. Some mentioned. Is it set up as a priority zone? Does it need its own pump? Are you required (or want) to include a tempering valve and the required extra piping to make it work? how far is it from the boiler? How far do you need to run lines to hook it into the existing water? The more connections, parts can add up and labor makes it add up faster. How easy is it to wrestle the thing into place (empty, they aren't that heavy, but are bulky and nobody wants a dented one!).
  8. Alex Rock

    Alex Rock New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    UK
  9. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,491
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    HOW it connects to the boiler and its controls, will determine the cost and that is something we cannot even guess at without being there and seeing what you have now. BUT, you have to ensure that your boiler has the capacity for the heater. It is NOT "free heat", just because the boiler is already there.
  10. Alex Rock

    Alex Rock New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    UK
    I'm agree. It's hard to guess the cost. It depend's of a pipe, a pump and other private things. The cost varies from $1000 to $3000 becuase of a character of installation. Professional labor can esimate this job when he will see all problems.
  11. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,460
    Location:
    MD
    Get enough bids so you can see a cluster in the dollar amounts when you plot them along a line [a dot plot]. The cluster center is the true cost of doing your job in your ZIPcode, today.
    If you want, you can correct the bids for credibility. A bidder that is twice as credible as the others gets his bid price cut in half.

    The median household income for your area
    http://www.zipskinny.com/index.php?zip=10467
    is low, so you'll pay less than the US average.
  12. enb54

    enb54 Researcher

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB
    Well, in 2004 I replaced an Amana indirect with a standard Amtrol 40 U.S. gallon unit, and it was about $1200 at the time. No extra piping was required though, so that was probably low for what you are doing...
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