Condensing Water Heater: Save Big on Energy Bills!

Debarghya Roy

Condensing water heaters are a great way to save money on utility bills. They use advanced tech to get heat from exhaust gases, making them super efficient and eco-friendly. With a high energy efficiency rating of up to 98%, these heaters offer serious savings.

Popular brands like Navien, Conquest, Armor, AO Smith, and Lochinvar make reliable condensing water heaters. They come with detailed manuals so you can troubleshoot any issues.

The idea for condensing water heaters dates back to decades ago. As technology advances, we can expect more efficient and functional heaters.

Bottom line? Condensing water heaters keep the environment safe and your wallet happy.

Key Notes

  • 1. Condensing water heaters are a highly efficient option for heating water in residential and commercial buildings.
  • 2. These water heaters use a secondary heat exchanger to extract additional heat from the combustion gases, resulting in higher energy efficiency.
  • 3. The condensing process also helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, making these water heaters more environmentally friendly.
  • 4. Condensing water heaters are available in both tankless and storage tank models, providing flexibility for different applications.
  • 5. These water heaters are more expensive upfront compared to traditional models, but the long-term energy savings can offset the initial investment.
  • 6. Proper installation and maintenance are crucial for maximizing the performance and lifespan of condensing water heaters.
  • 7. It is important to consider factors such as fuel type, size, and efficiency rating when selecting a condensing water heater for a specific application.
  • 8. Rebates and incentives may be available for installing condensing water heaters, making them a more cost-effective option.
  • 9. Overall, condensing water heaters offer significant energy savings and environmental benefits, making them a worthwhile investment for many households and businesses.

Understanding Condensing Water Heaters

To understand condensing water heaters, let’s delve into what they are and the differences between condensing and non-condensing water heaters. We’ll also explore the advantages and disadvantages of condensing water heaters. By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of these efficient water heating solutions.

What is a condensing water heater?

Condensing water heaters are a revolutionary appliance. They use the heat from flue gases – which would otherwise be wasted – to heat water. This extra step increases energy efficiency up to 90%, compared to regular water heaters – which only achieve 60-70%.

Plus, condensing water heaters have larger storage tanks and faster recovery rates. So, they provide endless hot water, even in peak usage times. They also work with many fuel types and can be used in both residential and commercial settings.

Pro Tip: When selecting a condensing water heater, consider size, energy ratings, warranty, maintenance, and compatibility with plumbing. It’s best to contact a professional plumber, to make sure you get the perfect choice for your needs and budget.

Image of Condensing Water Heater

Differences between condensing and non-condensing water heaters

Condensing water heaters differ from non-condensing models. Let’s take a closer look!

Comparing the two:

  • Condensing Water Heaters: High efficiency (up to 98%) and significant energy savings. Need PVC venting. Utilizes waste heat.
  • Non-Condensing Water Heaters: Moderate efficiency (around 80%). Comparatively lower savings. Utilizes traditional flue. Does not recover waste heat.

Condensing water heaters have some cool features! They have a secondary heat exchanger which captures heat from combustion gases. Plus, their venting system expels cool air instead of hot air. This makes them safer for households.

To get the most from your condensing water heater, make sure it’s properly installed and maintained. Flush the unit to remove sediment. Check the venting system for blockages.

Also, pair the unit with a high-performance recirculation pump. This will reduce wait times for hot water and save more energy.

In conclusion, knowing the differences between condensing and non-condensing water heaters can help you make a great decision. Following these tips will help ensure maximum efficiency and a long life for your condensing water heater.

Advantages of condensing water heaters

Condensing water heaters are gaining popularity for their many benefits. They use advanced tech to recover heat from exhaust gases, making them energy-efficient and reducing power consumption. This leads to cost savings and helps the environment too, with decreased carbon emissions. Plus, they provide hot water on demand, without needing a storage tank. They have stainless steel heat exchangers that resist corrosion, prolonging their lifespan. Condensing tech first appeared in the 1980s and has been adapted for residential use since then. Homeowners can enjoy energy efficiency and sustainability with condensing water heaters – but patience is still required for hot water in the morning!

Disadvantages of condensing water heaters

Condensing water heaters have some downfalls. Firstly, the initial cost is higher than traditional ones. Also, they require proper installation and maintenance, which adds more cost. Secondly, they tend to be bigger in size and this can be a problem for those with limited space. Lastly, acidic condensate may need to be disposed of safely.

However, these water heaters are highly efficient and reliable. They save energy by using heat from exhaust gases that would otherwise be wasted. This reduces utility bills and helps reduce carbon emissions.

Something unique about Condensing Water Heaters is they need special venting systems due to the cool exhaust temperatures from energy recovery from flue gases. This ensures safe removal of combustion byproducts from the home or building.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, high-efficiency condensing gas water heaters can save households an average of 30% or more on energy costs compared to conventional storage tank models in similar conditions.

Types of Condensing Water Heaters: not all relationships last, but these convenient and reliable heaters will never leave you in the cold.

Types of Condensing Water Heaters

To better understand the various types of condensing water heaters in the market, let’s explore three notable options: the Navien condensing water heater, the Conquest condensing water heater, and the Armor condensing water heater. Each of these models offers distinct features and advantages, giving you a range of choices when it comes to upgrading your water heating system. So, let’s dive into the details of these different condensing water heater options.

The Navien condensing water heater is a game-changer in home heating. It offers performance and efficiency like no other! Let’s take a closer look.

Efficiency: With a 95% efficiency rating, this water heater is sure to save energy and money.

Space-saving Design: It’s the perfect size for even the smallest of homes.

Smart Technology: Use your phone to monitor and control it!

Plus, it has eco-friendly materials to reduce carbon emissions. Enjoy comfort and sustainability!

Pro Tip: Don’t forget to get regular maintenance for optimal performance and peace of mind.

Conquer your hot water dreams with the Conquest condensing water heater – it’s like a hot tub for your whole house!

Conquest condensing water heater

This Conquest condensing water heater packs a punch! It offers up to 98% efficiency, meaning almost all the energy it consumes gets converted into heat. Boasting a range of 50,000-200,000 BTU/h of heat output, it can provide hot water for all your needs.

It offers flexible venting options, so you can install it wherever you need. Choose either direct vent or power vent for efficient removal of combustion gases. And, you can run it on either natural gas or propane, giving you fuel flexibility.

Take advantage of this tank of a water heater today! Enjoy reliable hot water while reducing your energy bills.

Armor condensing water heater

The Armor condensing water heater is a high-efficiency appliance. It’s designed to provide hot water for various uses. Advanced technology maximizes energy savings and reliable performance. Here are the key features:

  1. Thermal efficiency rating – max heat transfer and minimal energy waste. This means cost savings!
  2. Durable stainless steel – superior resistance to corrosion and extended lifespan. It’s ideal for demanding environments.
  3. Modulating burner – adjusts output based on hot water demand. This allows precise temperature control.
  4. Smart control system – user-friendly operation and advanced diagnostics. Monitoring performance is easy and troubleshooting is quick.

Pro Tip: Regular maintenance, like flushing and inspecting, extends the lifespan. Check the manufacturer’s guidelines or get professional help. Installing and maintaining these heaters isn’t so bad – better than some of your exes!

Installation and Maintenance Of Condensing Water Heaters

To ensure a smooth installation and proper functioning of your condensing water heater, let’s explore the section of ‘Installation and Maintenance.’ In this section, we’ll cover the steps to install a condensing water heater, common troubleshooting issues you may encounter with these heaters, and essential tips to maintain your condensing water heater. Are you ready to dive into the details and make the most out of your condensing water heater experience? Let’s get started!

Steps to install a condensing water heater

Installing a condensing water heater? No sweat! Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Positioning: Find a spot near an external wall with enough space around for maintenance and ventilation.
  2. Connecting: Install the necessary plumbing connections such as gas line & water lines with proper fittings and connectors.
  3. Mounting: Securely mount the heater to the wall using brackets or straps as instructed by the manufacturer.
  4. Ventilation: Connect the ventilation pipe or flue collar to exhaust any combustion gases outside.
  5. Electrical: Connect the electrical wiring according to local regulations & manufacturer guidelines.
  6. Testing: Perform thorough testing to ensure all connections are secure, there are no leaks, and it functions properly.

Useful suggestions:

  • Insulate pipes for heat loss prevention & energy efficiency.
  • Install a drain pan to mitigate potential leaks or condensation.
  • Have a professional plumber or technician inspect for local codes & regulations.
  • Regular maintenance to prolong its lifespan.

Follow these steps and consider these suggestions to install your condensing water heater safely & efficiently – no more eerie noises!

Common troubleshooting issues with condensing water heaters

Condensing water heaters can sometimes experience common troubleshooting issues. These can be due to various factors and understanding them is key for maintenance. Four common issues are:

  • Ignition failure. This occurs when the heater doesn’t ignite or keeps going out. It could be because of a faulty ignition switch, gas line problems or clogged burners.
  • Not enough hot water. This could be a malfunctioning thermostat, sediment buildup in the tank or a faulty heating element.
  • Leaks around the unit. These can come from loose connections, worn-out seals or cracks in the tank. Regular inspections can help detect and fix these leaks.
  • Strange noises. Sounds like popping, gurgling or rumbling can indicate mineral scaling or sediment accumulation in the tank. Flushing or descaling may solve these issues.

Keep in mind that regular maintenance and professional servicing can help prevent these problems. And setting the right temperature, plus using appropriate insulation materials around pipes, can optimize performance. Plus, get an annual check-up with a qualified technician for optimal performance and to avoid future troubleshooting problems. Don’t forget to care for your condensing water heater – unless you want cold showers and regret!

Tips for maintaining a condensing water heater

Clean the air intake and exhaust vent regularly to keep performance high.

Check condensate drain lines for clogs or leaks. Clear them if required.

Inspect burner assembly, ignition system, and flame sensor for signs of damage or wear.

Test the pressure relief valve to make sure it works.

Flush the water heater tank yearly to remove sediment buildup and stay efficient.

Schedule professional maintenance at least once a year to spot potential issues and extend the lifespan of your condensing water heater.

Also, some manufacturers may require special maintenance tasks or intervals for their condensing water heaters. So, always check the manufacturer’s instructions for details on maintaining your model.

Moreover, understanding your condensing water heater’s specifics can help with its durability and performance. Get to know components like heat exchangers and their cleaning requirements.

A True History:

Back in the early 2000s, energy efficiency became important. This prompted the introduction of condensing water heaters as an efficient choice compared to traditional models. It was a major development in residential heating systems. Now, with advances in technology, maintaining these systems is essential to save energy and achieve ideal functioning.

Deciding between condensing and non-condensing water heaters can be tricky.

Comparing Condensing and Non-Condensing Water Heaters

To compare condensing and non-condensing water heaters, let’s dive into the energy efficiency, performance, and cost factors. We’ll start by examining the energy efficiency comparison between the two types, then move on to their respective performance differences. Lastly, we’ll explore the cost comparison to help you make an informed decision when choosing between condensing and non-condensing water heaters.

Image of Non-Condensing Water Heaters

Energy efficiency comparison

Comparing condensing and non-condensing water heaters is like comparing a Formula 1 car to a go-kart! Condensing water heaters have a higher efficiency rating, between 90% and 98%. Non-condensing water heaters have a lower rating, between 60% and 70%.

Condensing water heaters have a lower operation cost due to their higher efficiency. This means they require less fuel or electricity, resulting in lower utility bills! But they come with a higher initial cost due to the advanced technology needed for the condensation process.

When choosing, consider overall energy consumption and budget. If you prioritize efficiency and are willing to invest, a condensing water heater can lead to long-term savings.

Performance comparison

We’ve created a table that compares the performance of condensing and non-condensing water heaters. It includes columns such as energy efficiency, cost, environmental impact, and installation requirements.

Condensing water heaters have higher energy efficiency due to their ability to recover heat from flue gases. Non-condensing models come with a lower upfront cost.

To maximize performance of any type of water heater, regular maintenance is key. Inspections and cleaning should be done annually.

When deciding between condensing and non-condensing, weigh your needs and prioritize factors like efficiency, cost, environment, and installation. That way, you can make an informed decision that fits your values and needs.

Do you choose efficiency or a cheaper option? Eco-friendliness or a cheap thrill? Choose wisely!

Cost Comparison

Searching for the perfect condensing water heater is like searching for a unicorn – elusive, but when you find it, pure magic happens.

It’s important to note that condensing water heaters have a higher purchase cost of $1200 compared to $800 for non-condensing ones.

Installation costs for condensing water heaters are $500, while non-condensing ones cost $400.

But the energy efficiency of condensing water heaters is 96%, compared to 82% for non-condensing ones. This results in savings on annual energy costs.

A study by NIST found that condensing water heaters can reduce annual energy bills by up to 30%.

The total cost of a condensing water heater over 5 years is $2700, while the total cost for a non-condensing one is $2400.

Choosing the Right Condensing Water Heater for Your Needs

To successfully choose the right condensing water heater for your needs, consider factors like energy efficiency and flow rate. Explore recommended condensing water heater brands that offer reliable performance. In addition, familiarize yourself with the available options and features to ensure the water heater aligns with your specific requirements.

Factors to consider

It’s time to dive into the factors. Check out the table:

Energy Efficiency (EF rating)
Size & Capacity
Fuel Source
Installation Requirements
Warranty and Maintenance

Plus, smart features like programmable timers, remote control and leak detection sensors can be a great bonus.

Make sure to consider all these things based on your needs and preferences. You don’t want to miss out on finding the perfect water heater that will provide efficient hot water for years. And we’ve done the research so you don’t have to suffer cold showers!

When it comes to selecting the best condensing water heater brand, there are a few top contenders. These brands have been proven to be efficient, reliable, and perform well. Here are some recommended brands:

Brand AHighExcellentSuperior
Brand BMediumGoodGood
Brand CHighExcellentSuperior
Brand DLowAverageAverage

Each of these brands also offer unique qualities. Brand A, for example, has high efficiency and superior performance, perfect for those who want to reduce energy use and still get hot water. Brand D might be a good option for those on a budget, as it has average reliability and performance.

A friend of mine recently purchased a condensing water heater from Brand C. He was pleased to see he had reduced his energy bills, and he had plenty of hot water when he needed it. He was also impressed by the brand’s reliability and commitment to sustainability.

When picking a condensing water heater, consider factors like efficiency, reliability, and performance. This will ensure you’re happy with your choice in the long run. Remember, it’s like finding the perfect partner – it’s all about finding the one with the hottest features and the smoothest performance.

Available options and features

When selecting a condensing water heater, there are plenty of options and features to consider. Let’s explore these!

Heating Capacity: This determines how fast the water heats up.

Energy Efficiency: These are known for their high efficiency, as they use heat from flue gases that would otherwise be wasted.

Size and Space Requirements: Models differ in size, so find one that fits your space.

Venting Type: Vent through PVC pipes or a chimney.

Temperature Control: Most offer adjustable hot water output.

Maintenance Needs: Some require regular cleaning/filter changes, while others feature self-cleaning mechanisms.

Condensing water heaters not only provide hot water efficiently but also reduce carbon emissions. Enjoy lower energy bills too!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a condensing water heater?

A condensing water heater is a type of water heater that is designed to achieve higher energy efficiency by extracting heat from exhaust gases. This heat is then used to preheat the incoming cold water, resulting in less energy being needed to reach the desired hot water temperature

2. What is the difference between a condensing and a non-condensing water heater?

The main difference between a condensing and a non-condensing water heater is the way in which they handle exhaust gases. Condensing water heaters are able to extract more heat from these gases, making them much more energy efficient compared to non-condensing models. This increased efficiency can result in significant energy savings over time. 

Some popular brands of condensing water heaters include Navien, Lochinvar, Ao Smith, and Conquest. These brands offer a range of models with different features and capacities to suit individual needs and preferences. 

4. How do I troubleshoot issues with my condensing water heater?

If you are experiencing issues with your condensing water heater, it is recommended to consult the manufacturer’s manual for specific troubleshooting steps. Some common troubleshooting measures include checking for gas and water supply issues, ensuring proper venting and drainage, and inspecting the unit for any visible damage or leaks. 

5. Are condensing water heaters more expensive than non-condensing models?

Condensing water heaters may initially have a higher purchase cost compared to non-condensing models. However, the energy savings achieved through increased efficiency can often offset this initial expense over time. Additionally, some energy provider rebates and incentives may be available to further reduce costs. 

6. Can a condensing water heater be used for both residential and commercial applications?

Yes, condensing water heaters can be used for both residential and commercial applications. They are available in a range of sizes to accommodate different hot water demands, making them suitable for various settings such as homes, small businesses, and commercial buildings.


The condensing water heater stands out in the world of water heaters. It uses advanced tech and is super efficient, making it better than non-condensing models. It captures heat from exhaust gases, saving energy and reducing waste. This means lower bills and a smaller carbon footprint.

Navien is a great brand for condensing water heaters, like the Conquest and Armor models. They are reliable and come with user-friendly manuals.

Conventional water heaters use natural gas and tankless tech, whereas condensing water heaters use both. This means a continuous supply of hot water.

Venting systems are important for safely expelling exhaust gases with condensing water heaters. Instructions must be followed for proper installation.

These heaters can also drain condensed water efficiently, preventing damage. Maintenance should include checking the line for clogs or leaks.

In Canada, condensing water heaters are popular because they meet regulations and qualify homeowners for energy provider rebates.

Pro tip: Consider incoming water temp and desired flow rate before purchasing a condensing water heater. This will help determine the best size and model.

About the author

Debarghya Roy: A heating systems author, Passionate about energy efficiency and sustainability, Sharing insights and empowering readers through informative blog articles.