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  1. #1
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Posts
    731

    Default Need more hot water

    Hi Guys (its still all guys isn't it??),

    I am back from my extended vacation and after renting some nice places that could actually produce hot water in the shower for more than 3 minutes (did you know that that was possible??), my wife and I have finally decided to upgrade whatever we need to in order to be able to also have hot showers at home etc.

    We heat the house with an oil-fired burner and have had no problems with it, but we also get our hot water right off the furnace...but its not very hot, and it is not hot for very long [img]/w3tcompact/icons/sad.gif[/img]...

    Anyway, looking for recommendations on how to improve this situation.

    Basically we could add a stand-along hot water heater (should it be propane or electric or oil??) or else some sort of hybrid system that uses the furnance to do the first heating of the water but then stores hot water in a tank and has an additional heater element to maintain (or improve) the temperature...don't know the details about how it works though.

    Any recommedations? Go straight hot water heater? gas or electric? hybrid system? approximate cost of various solutions?

    Thanks all!


  2. #2
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    681
    Location
    Valrico, FL
    Tractor
    No longer have :-(

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    You could get one of those "on-demand" tankless hot water systems. Unlimited hot water! [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] This way you aren't paying to keep water hot when you aren't using it.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    19
    Location
    southern Saratoga County, upstate NY
    Tractor
    2001 JD4300 (Cracklin' Rosie)

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    It sounds like you have a domestic water heating coil inside your boiler. We had a similar system in a previous home, it worked fine for us, perhaps there is something defective in yours. If you haven't had your current system evaluated, might be worth investigating before upgrading to a new system.

    Current house has oil-fired hot water heating system - an old farm house with hot water radiators. The water heater is a heating tank operating as a separate zone in the heating system. Internally the water heater tank has a heat exchanger that heats the domestic hot water inside the tank. The water heater tank is well insulated, it's thermostat only kicks on the furnace from time to time, based on hot water demand. We've not run out of hot water.

    Think I've heard that this type of separate tank/zone system is most efficient, and that electric and propane would cost more - but your heating contractor should be able to lay out the alternatives.

    ps - think there are some ladies as active members - but the term 'guys' is pretty gender neutral these days. That's what you meant, right?

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    856
    Location
    South West Pa/Greene county
    Tractor
    Long/Landtrac360DTC

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    You could add a hot water heater after the furnace, this would allow the furnace to preheat the water, making less work and less fuel for the water heater. As far as what type, depends on your situation. Electric works fine if your water isn't too hard. Hard water has a tendency to leave deposits on the elements of the heater, causing loss of efficiency and premature failure. I use a natural gas water heater, after a bad experience with a electric heater in the last place I lived. The water destroyed the elements about every six months, I got quite good at replacing them. Not an easy or fun job.

    As far as price, I paid about $150 for a 40 gallon gas heater, which gives plenty of hot water for me and my wife. I can take a shower right after her and not run out of hot water. In my area, natural gas is the cheapest to operate, followed by propane, electric being the most expensive.

    Hope this helps,



  5. #5
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Posts
    346
    Location
    Wauconda, Illinois
    Tractor
    New Holland TC25D

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    The on-demand tankless heaters are pretty amazing. Bosch AquaStar is one of the better/more commonly found ones. Heck - even Home Depot carries them as a stock item.

    -- Jim

  6. #6
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Posts
    1,162
    Location
    Upstate NY, USA
    Tractor
    Kubota L3710 HST and a Kubota ZD21 60Pro

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    I have a dedicated oil fired hot water heater, (not attached to the oil fired furnace). When we built the houce 8 years ago oil fired hot water was the cheapest long term. With a 40 gallon tank and a 110K btu gun it can supply an infinite amount of hot water. We've never run out and have had times when 10+ people in the house for few weeks. Having 3 full baths has its advantages.

  7. #7
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    12,094
    Location
    Upper Midwest USA
    Tractor
    JD 4300, JD X485 JD 4x2 Gator, JD 425, JD455

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    Sure a lot of different ways to go.
    My take, is to separate your boiler from the domestic hot water provider, and get either an oil-fired hot water heater or propane (assuming natural gas isn't available). Stay away from electric. A 30 gal oil fired hot water heater will keep up with a 40 gal propane fired.

    Seems I recall running fresh water into your boiler system will play early havoc on the boiler unit. I keep my boiler system a separate, enclosed system. That drives the oxygen out of the water, and limits the amount of air that can get into the pipes and slow the circulation down.

    But don't take this as being expert advice, only 35 years of experience. I heated with fuel oil for 25+ years, with a 30 gal. hot water heater and an oil fired boiler. Then I switched to propane, and a 40 gal hot water heater, and have never been able to run enough water using bath, shower, washer, and dish washer to run out of hot water. I have been in many places where this does happen, and agree that it isn't pleasant on bit. Go to your heating professional and get their opinion - if possible.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Posts
    735
    Location
    Southern Maryland
    Tractor
    Ford 1220, John Deere 770, Case 580E and Allmand TLB-35

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    Got one installed when the house was built, for space savings and energy costs. Mine did not work very well at all. A year later, out it went and a 40 gal. propane replaced it.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member theboman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Posts
    1,576
    Location
    Grayson, KY
    Tractor
    Kubota B7500 HST

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    Tank size. You should be an RVer, most RV tanks are 3-6 gallons and it's the navy showers; wet,soap,rinse.

    Being from a huge family go with the biggest hot water tank that is possible.

    The on demand supply seems to be a choice, but I think it may be expensive and not very energy effencient.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    121
    Location
    So. N.H
    Tractor
    long 300dtc

    Default Re: Need more hot water

    Hi Ejb a questions 1st how many people using showers also
    it sounds like you have a tankless heater for hot water you may want to check mixing valve from system they can be set to diffrent temperatures also may need to be rebuillt it should be set aroud 120' so no burnes at sinks you may go higher if no kids around or elderly most people now not to put just hot on at sinks if this doesn't work becouse of usage i went with a storage tank used as another zone from same boiler good temp and plenty of water mine is an amtrol tank

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