In this post, we are going to talk about the Rinnai tankless water heater reviews and check out the reasons why they’re simply the best!
Just in case you aren’t aware, Rinnai is one of the best manufacturers of tankless water heaters globally. This is a Japanese brand and like most Japanese technology, you can rest assured that efficiency and reliability are guaranteed.
You probably stumbled upon this review as you seek to find out more about them. Well, you’ve come to the right place! Here, you’ll find the most comprehensive, most honest review of the Rinnai family of tankless water heaters. As always, we have put in hundreds of hours testing and researching on every product discussed here, we compared our experiences with both the positive and negative reviews of the product on Amazon, YouTube; indeed this will be one of the most accurate reviews of these water heaters that you’ll find anywhere on the internet. Specifications and features are easy to splash on the product pages, these are all over the internet, BUT ours is a review of the personal experience we had with the product. We try to be as balanced and honest as possible.
What are the major benefits of tankless water heaters?
- Generally, tankless water heaters consume 30-50% less energy in comparison to units that have tanks. You’re thus able to save much on fuel and energy costs every year. Besides, they heat water only when you‘ve turned on the faucet.
- These also accord you unlimited comfort and convenience; most are small and compact, can be mounted on a wall or installed outdoors in a cabin, under the stairs, you name it. They take lesser space and can guarantee you or your family a continuous supply of on-demand hot water, at very affordable costs.
- Thirdly, a good tankless water heater will serve you longer, are more reliable, in comparison to units with tanks. Most heaters can serve you for up to 15 years with regular maintenances in between. Most heat exchangers have warranties of up to 12 years or more, which is a testimony of just how sturdily built these units are.
- These tend to be more eco-friendly; they’re friendly to your wallet and to the environment too. You can save up to 40% of your utility bills when using tankless heaters.
- Lastly, you’re assured of clean and safer water when showering; water stored in tanks for long accumulates scale and rust. These heaters require lesser flushing compared to units that have tanks.
What’s the definition of a good tankless water heater?
Tankless water heaters are unique in that water travels directly from the faucet to the unit where it is heated; no need for an external storage tank. They are light, compact, and can be installed or mounted almost anywhere. As such, there are four things you’ll need to consider when buying;
- Duration it takes to heat the water: some water heaters are instantaneous, others will take up to 50 seconds before the water becomes hot. This is an important factor that you should always consider keenly.
- Energy consumption: tankless water heaters can either use electricity or natural gas. The latter tends to be more energy efficient especially if you’re looking to lower your energy bills. However, be ready to spend slightly more when installing them and getting the right ventilation ducts and systems to ensure all harmful fumes are safely vented outside.
- Capacity: different water heaters have different capacities, some are ideal for small homes or apartments with minimal hot water needs, others can be used to power multiple showers, dishwashers, washing machines, all at once.
- Additional factors: lastly, you want to consider other additional factors like installation costs, noise levels (some of these units are notoriously noisy), as well as any special technology used. Mind you, some heaters have inbuilt software that helps you monitor scale deposit levels, softness or hardness of the water, and so on.
Top 5 Rinnai Tankless Water Heaters
Rinnai RL94iN Natural Gas
It’s an improved version that replaces the previous model, the R94LSi. Has better detection of scale deposits and there are no temperature variations as you shower; once you set the temp it remains constant all way through. Interestingly, the RL94iN is one of the few units in the Rinnai family that ‘remembers’ your preferred water temp; in case the power goes off, it’ll remember the temperature you had set and automatically reset itself to the same.
Pros: Unlimited and constant flow of hot water, an inbuilt recirculation pump, very minimal noise.
Cons: Low energy efficiency rating, poor or nonexistent technical support from the company in case of a breakdown
The Rinnai RL75iN is cheap and recommended for anyone who’s on a tight budget. Well, you can comfortably use a dishwasher and three showers without noticing any drop in temperature. A directly sealed combustion vent means that you can install this unit in the bedroom and other places that traditional water heaters wouldn’t. It’s also worth noting that this water heater consumes lesser gas per gallon compared to most units in the market.
Pros: Efficient and reliable, ideal when you’re on a tight budget.
Cons: Cheap can be expensive, be ready for frequent and regular maintenances on every component of the unit, from combustion fan to solenoid valves, and so on.
Rinnai RL94eP Outdoor Propane
A simple but sophisticated water heater comes with an advanced Digital Controller. You’ll find the pressure relief valves and isolation valves quite useful. This unit has a large capacity; when showering, you wouldn’t notice any difference even if someone else was using the dishwasher or showering in the next room. It’s the ideal unit for a large family with a huge demand for hot water, or in a salon where you need an unlimited supply of hot water on demand.
Pros: Very quiet, easy to install, most professional plumbers will recommend it.
Cons: Ensure that you double check the propane regulator before purchasing; instances of dysfunctional regulators on brand new units are not uncommon.
Rinnai V65EP Low Nox Propane
It’s small but super powerful and efficient, clearly one of the most technologically advanced units in the Rinnai family. The compact size makes it the ideal unit for outdoor installations like in mobile homes. The unit requires little flushing and other maintenance practices, thanks to enhanced scale detection technology.
Pros: For a unit that costs under $700, the V65EP is extremely efficient and reliable, with low NOx emissions.
Cons: Rinnai is notorious for their poor customer care services and tendency to dilly dally till the warranty has expired.
Rinnai RL94iP Propane
Our last unit in this review is compact, consistent, and can be used with up to 5 appliances in one go. You can easily install the RL94iP without any outside help thanks to a detailed owner’s manual. It’s a low-cost unit that will easily meet the hot water needs of a large family.
Pros: Works quietly, reliably, uses propane, and maintenance costs are low.
Cons: Again, no specific con apart from the poor customer care track record of Rinnai, and tendency to take you round in circles anytime you claim warranty.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- Are these powered by natural gas, or electricity? The simple answer is that they’re powered by both. Much as the burners used to heat water are powered by natural gas or propane, you’ll need electricity (at least 120 volts) to power the ignition system.
- Does Rinnai produce any units fully powered by electricity? The simple answer; NO. Natural gas and propane are way much cheaper; it’d be so costly powering your tankless water heater with electricity. As such, all of these units use natural gas and only use electricity to power the ignition system and the digital control screen.
- Generally speaking, how durable are these? Well, your unit’s lifespan will be determined by your usage, quality of water, the environment you live, maintenance, and the specific unit you’re using. But generally speaking, Rinnai Tankless Water Heaters can serve you for 20 years or more.
- Lastly, what gas type do they use? Depending on your preference, you can convert your units to use either natural gas or propane. This flexibility is available in most Rinnai water heater models.
Most Rinnai Tankless water heaters will serve you with loyalty and efficiency, requiring only periodic maintenances. They also have special inbuilt systems used to prevent the so-called “cold water sandwich effect”.
Hopefully, this review of Rinnai Tankless water heaters will imbue you with some handy facts and points to remember when out shopping. We never advertise or admonish any brands, ours is always an honest and balanced review of our own experience with the product. Also feel free to check out the customer reviews at Amazon before purchasing your Rinnai water heater of choice; you’ll find that most of our recommendations are not so apart from what other customer’s experienced.