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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    SoCal
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    Default Which water heater is the best

    After installing hundreds of natural gas residential water heaters I still don't have a favorite water heater. They all can be good or bad, depending on your luck.

    I've read on line all those horror stories and complaints regarding all makes and models, but which one is consistently the lowest in complaints and problems, with budget in mind?

    This week I installed a Bradford White, after a customer said he didn't want a Rheem, an AO Smith, an American or any of their private brands.

    What do you think? share some of your experiences.

    Note: I'm talking about the traditional tank water heater only.
    Last edited by dj1; 08-11-2012 at 09:21 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    8,002

    Default Re: Which water heater is the best

    It's been too many years since I've installed a W/H to be able to offer any advice. I can't even remember the brand, it was whatever my supplier had at the time. As far as I'm concerned, any water heater worth installing is worth having the plumber install.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Default Re: Which water heater is the best

    Good question dj. We used Rheem for years. Then we started having premature tank failures. (leaking) Switched over to AO Smith. That was going fine until there last design change on there gas heaters. They were having problems with the air intake filters becoming plugged. They were a real pain to clean only to have them do the same thing again. From what I here they have supposedly solved the problems with there filters. I cant' say for sure because we are know using Rheem again. In my opinion the problem comes from the changes in the energy codes making them redesign there heaters, what seems to be every other year.
    If it's not broken don't fix it.

    John

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Which water heater is the best

    John,

    I've installed GE water heaters (made by Rheem) that caught on fire.

    They run and loop their pilot gas line under the burner, sometimes the lines melt (yes melt and turn to gray dust) and develop serious leaks that start those fires. Rheem will gladly replace the burner assembly (which arrives rather quickly), but they won't admit to a design fault or a liability whatsoever.

    Have you experienced this?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    1,252

    Default Re: Which water heater is the best

    Quote Originally Posted by dj1 View Post
    John,

    I've installed GE water heaters (made by Rheem) that caught on fire.

    They run and loop their pilot gas line under the burner, sometimes the lines melt (yes melt and turn to gray dust) and develop serious leaks that start those fires. Rheem will gladly replace the burner assembly (which arrives rather quickly), but they won't admit to a design fault or a liability whatsoever.

    Have you experienced this?
    No I haven't. But then I'm retired. But I will mention it to my son. It just seems to never end with untested products on the market today.

    John

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