Point of service water heater for bathroom

a2geminiMarch 4, 2012

We are in the middle of kitchen remodel and the whole ceiling is gone - so my brain starts ticking....

We have a nice hybrid hot water heater (Smith) but the BR is pretty far away and we have to run hot water for a minute or 2 til the water clears the pipes.

I am thinking, while the kitchen is torn up of putting a small tankless hot water heater in the BR for the 2 sinks.

Like or Dislike?

Recommended brands?

I tried surfing but didn't get many hits.


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A small tanked heater, yes. A small tankless, no. Tankless requires a LOT of electrical service to get a good temperature rise, even out of a low flow faucet. You'd have to have one that uses about 100 amps in order to be able to get hot water at a 2.5 gallon flow rate. With only a 200 amp panel on most homes, that's not a realistic choice.

A small 5 gallon tank heater or a recirculation pump on a motion detector would be a better choice.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 2:39PM
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Love your handle live wire!
Thanks - will not pursue the tank less for the bathroom.
We looked at it for the whole house(gas) but the delta was too great as incoming water temp was 37 degrees in the winter.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 4:27PM
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What you need is a Metlund D'Mand system, you push a button on a transmitter that looks like a doorbell. I have a button in the kitchen and one in the bathroom. When I get the master suite built this spring there will be a third button in there.

The system purges the cold water from your lines. In our house I have to wait 35 seconds for the pump to work its magic. Then I turn on the water and within 5 seconds it's full hot and it stays hot for several minutes even if I don't turn it on right away. The Metlund unit is plugged into the wall beside my water heater, I'm not sure of the exact plumbing involved. This system is much cheaper to operate than the standard always-on hot water recirculation system like my grandmother had.

I love my Metlund system and no longer have to waste water waiting for the hot. I get hot water right away for the shower, sinks, washer, and dishwasher. It's great.

Here is a link that might be useful: Metlund D'Mand System

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 11:50PM
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+1 for a recirculation pump .

47's system taking 35 seconds is too long for me to wait. If I'm paying for instant , I want instant, not half a minute wait.

A constant recirculating pump can be put on a timer too, if you want to save a little bit of energy.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 4:46PM
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I have read about constant recirculating pumps, costs for running one are high. Yes, it could be put on a timer to save maybe 1/3. I chose the most efficient and low-cost solution for my home.

After many years of living in a 3500 square foot house and watching so much water go down the drain while waiting up to 2 minutes for hot water, waiting for half a minute - with no wasted water - is nothing for me. I just push the button half a minute before I need the hot water and do something else during that time: undress, stack dishes, etc. The wait is of no consequence considering the low cost of plumbing, unit, and almost zero cost of electricity to run it.

Instant hot water is one way to go, it's just quite a bit more expensive.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 12:10AM
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We are talking about a luxury or convenience here.

Everyone has their own views. I wouldn't spend any money on hardware or electricity for a 35 second wait and a button to remember to press.

Cheaper than that system is a centrally located water heater and a cleverly sized pipe system can deliver hot water in under a minute. Basically free.

If I wanted hot water instantly or near , and were spending $$ on hardware I'd want it hot when I turned the tap. To each his own.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 12:25AM
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I've lived in the USA desert southwest for over 20 years. I grew up in west Texas. Water is a precious resource and not to be squandered. Anything I can do to save water in my home is not a luxury or convenience, it's a necessity.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 1:38AM
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For a bathroom, I think the motion detector that LWO mentioned that activates the recirculation pump is a much better choice than having to push a button. By the time you've done your business, the hot water is at the tap to wash your hands. For a kitchen, I prefer a small tank heater fed by the hot water line. You get instant hot water and then the hot water from the main tank (or tankless) refills the tank and continues to supply the tap.

As Antss said though, the cheapest and best solution is to have a good plumber design your water delivery system and locate the hot water supply centrally. Or even potentially have two supply locations if the house is long.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 10:07AM
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or tall.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 1:29PM
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