January 2012

The Correct Reason For Choosing a Tankless Water Heater , Part 2

"Well, last month’s blog about choosing a tankless water heater resulted in a response from a representative of the Rinnai Tankless Water Heater Company.  Rinnai representative Trey Hoffman made two counter points.

First, Trey stated that “local tax credits and local utility incentives can “knock” from $300 to $1000 off the difference increase between a tankless water heater and a storage model.  Thus, reducing the payback period considerably”.  

Second, Trey stated that “ROI  (return on investment) isn’t necessarily a part of green criteria.  There are plenty of green technologies that have little or no payback, like hybrid cars or solar panels, but which are nonetheless green because they consume less energy.  ROI is often used to economically justify a purchase, but it is not the only reason.”

I appreciate and agree with both of Trey’s comments.  

Local tax credits and utility incentives can and do provide a shorter “payback” period.  However, the incentives for a tankless are growing smaller, and are in doubt moving forward.  The danger here is that manufacturers can come to rely on that sales strategy too heavily.  That is, choose it simply for the incentive.  I recently spoke with a regional sales rep from another tankless manufacturer, and he stated that their sales had suffered considerably due to the ending of major tax credits.  Point is, all products will eventually need to stand on their own merits, as government assistance won’t, and shouldn’t, last forever.  

Also, if we only choose products that provide a reasonable payback, then a lot of potential great green projects will be left undone.  So, Hoffman’s point about making green choices because they make a savings contribution to our environment is valid.  When using a tankless in similar fashion to a storage, they will use less energy.  From 25% (Me) to 35% (Trey) less.  Indeed, I do drive a Hybrid work vehicle for that reason.  

Homeowners would be best served to consider all the criteria like energy, environment, space savings, cost and hot water.  For Trey Hoffman and myself, we choose tankless.  And endless hot water.

Thanks to Trey Hoffman from the Rinnai Tankless Water Heater Company for taking the time to comment.  I’m happy to know that people are getting information from our site, and are able to make informed decisions.

MapleService provides plumbing and heating service & installations in the Eureka, CA and Santa Rosa, CA communities."

Submitted by Dale Maples, co-owner and Trey Hoffman, Rinnai Tankless

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