Recommendation for 50 gallon gas water heater - Rheem, AO smith or Reliance?

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tracyballard

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Our Rheem 50 gallon water heater is leaking from the bottom and I'm about to replace it. The options are another Rheem from Home Depot, an AO Smtih branded model from Lowe's or a Reliance "self-cleaning" unit (also AO smith I think) from Pride Home center. Any recommendations on those? Should I try to buy from a dedicated plumbing supply store instead? Also Grainger seems to have a more expensive Rheem model with a different prefix to the model number, it's PROG50-38N RH60 instead of the XG50T12HE40U0 at HomeDepot. Any thoughts?
 

Jeff H Young

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never been thought of befor LOL . just kidding Im not big on Ao smith from the big box store but if its bottom dollar Ill buy and install one or I go to my supply house and get Bradford white probebly around 100 bucks more. quicker and easier for me to go to lowes , but I leave it up to customer, and I recomend bradford white I thinki its worth the extra If they want home depot Ill do that too I get discount at Lowes and its closer so Its a few bucks cheaper if I go to lowes.
Ive heard all the storys on big box stuff is lower quality and I can confirm that with certain items differances exsist I just cant determine the extent of the differances and if in everycase the differance automaticaly means the product is inferior to buying at supply houses . If a plastic drain valve vs a brass valve is the primary differance is that worth a hundred or 2 price differance? Are the tanks the same ? I dont know
 

Eman85

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I'm not a plumber. I bought an AO Smith from Lowes. They are built near me and seem to be decent water heaters. The tanks are supposed to be all the same among all of their heaters, difference is the plastic to brass drain valve is supposed to be the only difference according to employees I've spoke to. I figure I stand a better chance with the warranty through Lowes as any place else.
 
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