Hot Water

This Rheem '4.2 GPM Tankless Water Heater LP Gas'
was purchased on

The 4.2 GPM model has since been discontinued
My guess is they found out 4.2 doesn't really get it

Oh well, it's stronger then the motel water savers and
its better then having to run into town for a shower

This is actually the indoor model and your supposed
to get the $200+ vent kit to go with it

However, I've got it high enough in under the carport roof to protect it from the weather, so I hope that is okay

Glad it's not where we sleep because it does sort of
whoosh and grumble when the hot water is turned on

Indoor direct-vent diagram for the tankless water heater

The water heater does work without the remote control connected

To see how the wire was connected, click
this image to get the full screen view

It did not come with the wire; got it at Home Depot

I made this cover to keep the bugs and birds out, but sometimes the heater objects to the obstruction
Then the heater will cut out and display an error message on the remote (not in this pic)

The shower at 120 was too weak though our water pressure is good. I reasoned that raising the hot temp would allow me to bump up the cold making the shower a bit more robust. After about a month of this I did so.

Following the directions I flipped an internal switch raising it to 140. It did improve the flow some.

However, the heater began cutting off after about a minute into my shower and I would have to wait just as long for it to reset and give me another minute.

I dropped the temp on the remote (not the internal switch) back down to 120 but it did not help.

Good thing my wife had already returned to our summer home.

By the time I called tech support, I too was about 3000 miles away. He told me that I would have to call back when I return so that they could guide me through various diagnostics. Without readings from the remote, he could not diagnose the problem.

I also asked if my being at 3240 feet in elevation could be a problem since the manual says that at 3280 it would require a different chip. He said no; below 3280 that chip could cause problems.

So at about that time, I will return to this document and give you an update. That should be December 2009 if all goes according to plan.


7 months later ...
We returned here 11/4/09. I took a shower. It cut off. My wife took a shower. It did not cut off. Huh?!

She has continued to be happy to this day (1/5/10). I continued to be confused; my showers continued to cut off – until I called Rheem a couple weeks later.

At first I talked to a woman who told me my warranty was void because I was using an indoor heater outdoors. I rudely told her what I thought of that and she rudely told me what I could do about it – nothing. A few days later a tech support guy called and he was very helpful.

First, the difference between my wife′s usage and mine: I like my showers comfortable; not too hot; not too cold – as it turns out, exactly 108 degrees. She likes her showers HOT – 120 degrees. I do not understand this since I have something of a tough weathered Marine hide, whereas she has a soft delicate white Irish skin that turns bright red while in the shower – and she likes that.

The difference is that at 120 degrees I was adding some cold and she was not.

The flow of the water is what activates the heater. Turning on the cold at the shower diverted the water enough to reduce the flow to the heater and shut it off.

Apparently the pressure from the 2600 gallon water tank is not strong enough, even though it is about 30 feet higher in elevation. So I need a pump. I am researching that.

In the mean time, I reduce the water temp at the remote to 108 degrees before I take my shower and only turn on the hot water valve at the shower, and it does not cut off. Afterwards, I bump it back up to 114 degrees and my wife seems happy with that.


Continued in 2012

Copyright © 2009, Van Blakeman