Would like recommendations for indirect replacement

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by pete c, Oct 26, 2015.

  1. pete c

    pete c Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Connecticut
    My Vaughn indirect is leaking like a sieve. Yet another victim of my very hard acidic well water.

    I am in the process of installing a softener/pH balancing system which will hopefully solve this problem. A while back, when heating oil was 4 bucks a gallon, I said screw it and found an almost new electric, resistance water heater on CL. My plan was to go ahead and install it. At 4 bucks a gallon, i figured it was a no brainer.

    Now, they're damn near giving oil away which has me wondering if I should reconsider. I know <2 dollar oil won't last forever, but will it last long enough to consider another IDWH? I am a big fan of buying stuff used and was thinking if I could find one on the cheap, it might be worthwhile to give it a shot and when oil goes to 5 bucks a gallon, install the electric or maybe even go with a hybrid. I have also considered getting a tankless coil and going with a tankless coil/electric water heater series setup. I would use the TC during heating season and just the EWH the rest of the year. This could be done for the price of the coil, a few ft of pipe and about 30 ft of 8-2 romex or whatever it is I need for the EWH.

    I would like to eventually go to a hybrid and a multisplit. Maybe keep the boiler around as an assist when the temps get down below 20 degrees. But, for now, with cheap oil and a functioning boiler, I think I will hold off. Besides, just dropped a decent chunk of money on a new kitchen and my checking acct needs to take a breather.
     
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    Some of the indirects have a lifetime replacement warranty...they'll cover the cost of the new tank, but not installation. SuperStor was bought out by HTC a number of years ago, but is a decent tank. I've not looked recently, so cannot comment on others. There were some issues with the SuperSTors, and mine ended up being replaced - it's an HTC...cost me a few hundred dollars for labor to have it replaced, but it's been working fine now for a number of years. I'm not a fan of internal coils...they require the boiler to be kept hot 24/7, and even then, may not provide a large volume of hot water. Had one, didn't like it. It's a similar thing to tankless systems, it all depends on the volume you need and the temperature rise required to provide it. Might work fine in the summer, but be inadequate in the winter depending on where you live and the incoming cold water temperature.
     
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  4. pete c

    pete c Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I had a tankless coil in my last house, and on this system between indirects, before it rotted as well! And, yes, I don't like it either. If I do go with another tankless, after getting my water properly conditioned, it would be with the EWH in series, downstream. The EWH has a modulating effect on the too hot/too cold TC and when the heat is off, I would shutdown the boiler completely and go with just the EWH.
     
  5. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Even after conditioning my water, I would put in a powered anode into the water. It has the advantage of protecting like a magnesium anode without helping production of hydrogen sulfide.

    Even if you don't do that, I would consider loosening the existing anode after WH install and re-tighten to only 15 or 20 ft-lb. They over-tighten at the factory, then deposits lock things further. So with time you need a big impact wrench with a 1-1/8 impact socket to pull the anode after 5 or 10 years. Actually you might need the impact wrench for a new one too.

    I have a powered anode, and I expect to move that if I get a new water heater.
     
  6. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    FWIW, some of the available indirects are SS, and do not have an anode in them.
     
  7. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    Jan 14, 2009
    Location:
    01609
    Since you already have the electric tank- install it. If you can't stand what it's doing to the electric bill you can plan the next move, but in the mean time you'll have hot water without wondering when the thing is going to completely melt down.

    You might be able to score a craigslist indirect on the cheap- I've seen them, but they're a bit rare.

    Tankless coils would be a huge step backward- and force you to idle the boiler at a much higher temp, reducing overall efficiency (by quite a bit.)
     
  8. pete c

    pete c Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I think that is what I will do. Put the EWT in. Keep my eye out for a cheap indirect.
     
  9. Steph123

    Steph123 New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2016
    Location:
    Ohio

    Where do you get a powered anode? I have searched everywhere on the internet and can only find one site that sells them. Since I don't know this company I am afraid to spend that kind of money with them. Do regular Home Depots or Lowes sell these?
    I have well water, new water heater (Bradford white) that the home warranty company installed , and water softner. The Hot water has the rotten egg smell BAD! and I may be crazy, but it has caused my face to break out very badly and burn like hell!
     
  10. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    They are not high volume. Few people ever replace their anode, but instead consider a water heater to be a replaceable unit. The main advantage of a powered anode vs a magnesium anode is that it does not engage in chemical reactions that generate H2S. Click Inbox above.
     
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