It's a tankless job, but somebody's gotta do it. You’re in the market for a tankless water heater and have trained your sights on Rinnai. The first step: Read a Rinnai tankless water heater review and see what you can learn (other than silly puns, that is.)
What you’ll find is that Rinnai is one of the most popular brands for water heaters The company estimates its technology is heating water for 30 million households or organizations worldwide.
Rinnai is a Japanese company founded in 1920 as a manufacturer of pressurized oil cooking stoves. It has recently been expanding in North America, where it now has an estimated two million water heaters installed.
Is a Rinnai the right choice for you? The answer begins with a Rinnai tankless water heater review.
What Are Tankless Water Heaters?
The chances are good that you’re familiar with the basic functionality of the conventional water heater. It utilizes a storage tank to keep a supply of water at the ready for showers, laundry, big cleaning jobs, or more.
How is a tankless water heater different? Tankless water heaters provide hot water on demand. When you turn on your shower, faucet or washer, cold water flows in through a pipe and is heated instantly by either a gas burner or electricity.
Tankless water heaters require much less space. and save on utility costs, since they don't have a tank to warm all the time.
The downside: the dreaded moment you run out of hot water. If you have several things going on at once, you might outstrip the capacity of the device. Tankless heaters also require more ongoing maintenance.
Keep these differences in mind while reading this Rinnai tankless water heater review.
Rinnai Tankless Water Heater Review
Rinnai markets home tankless water heaters in two categories: high-efficiency and super-high efficiency. The most significant difference: the Rinnai SE line puts out slightly more gallons per minute than the high-efficiency line.
It's not the subject of this Rinnai tankless water heater review, but note that the company also manufactures a line of hybrid tankless water heaters for commercial use. These devices combine the instant heat capabilities of tankless with an onboard storage tank.
In the high-efficiency category, consider the Rinnai V65IN HE tankless water heater. The V65IN offers an output of 6.5 gallons per minute, which the company says is “ideal” for small-to-medium new homes or remodels.
The high-efficiency water heater is WiFi-capable. It's also highly compact. The company says the heater is the "size of a small suitcase."
In contrast, if you are looking for something bigger, make the RU199IN part of your Rinnai tankless water heater review. The RU199N is also intended for indoor installation and is WiFi capable.
This super-high efficiency device contemplates warms 11 gallons per minute.
Both the V65IN and RU199IN are gas water heaters.
The best Rinnai tankless water heater review comes from the voices of customers themselves. Both the V65IN and RU199IN do well on that front.
The V65IN receives a ranking of 4.3 stars out of 5.0. Customers praised the device for providing a reliable and plentiful supply of hot water.
Less positive reviewers wrote of their disappointment with the installation process and of some hiccups in customer service.
The RU199IN gets a ranking of 4.4 stars out of 5.0 on Amazon. Reviewers praised the water heater’s performance and consistency in putting out hot water when needed.
However, customers also struggled to find the right professional help for installing and reported some consistent performance in water heating.
How We Reviewed Tankless Water Heaters
Water heaters are the building blocks of modern life. In crafting our Rinnai tankless water heater review, we consulted a variety of sources.
We started, of course, with the Rinnai U.S. website, which offered a clear sense of features of their water heater line and the benefits of tankless.
To help supplement and cross-check our information, we also consulted other sites such as Consumer Reports, WaterHeaters, and Reviews. That last site helped us pick out a few competing models to compare against Rinnai.
On top of all that, we also read reviews of people who have experience with the Rinnai brand. Out of all that information came this Rinnai tankless water heater review.
Ecosmart ECO 36
The Ecosmart ECO 36 is one of the most popular water heaters. In contrast to the Rinnai, the device is electric.
The ECO 36 says it heats 3.5 gallons of water per minute (but that will vary depending on the starting temperature.) That should be enough to handle multiple quick showers simultaneously.
Amazon reviewers give the ECO 36 a ranking of 4.0 stars out of 5.0, based on nearly 2,500 reviews. Positive reviewers praised the unit for its output and energy efficiency, while less enthusiastic customers struggled with warranty issues and occasional defects.
Gasland BE158 Tankless Water Heater
Tankless water heaters open up a world of new applications. So, if your house is a tiny home or an RV, consider the Gasland BE158 Tankless Water Heater.
This device doesn't provide a large output -- only about two gallons per minute. But that's OK. since it's intended for camping or other outdoor hot water needs.
As such, the BE158 is portable and available for a variety of uses -- and not just for camping. Maybe you live by a beach, and your family would benefit from an outdoor shower, or you'd like to give your pet a bath that isn't freezing cold.
The Gasland BE158 receives a ranking of 4.3 stars out of 5.0 on Amazon. Positive reviewers found the device easy to install and praised it for providing a consistent source of hot water.
In contrast, more negative reviewers had problems with customer service and also complained of occasional defects or other malfunctions.
Stiebel Eltron 29 Plus Tempra
Depending on how hot you want your water to be, another potential option for a whole-house water heater is the Stiebel Eltron 29 Plus.
The Stiebel line comes with a range of different options to fit different situations. Depending on the starting temperature of the water, you could see 4.5 gallons per minute.
Stiebel’s Eltron 29 Plus is another option for anyone looking for an electric water heater. It's compact enough to hang on a side wall.
Amazon reviewers give the Stiebel Eltron a ranking of 4.3 stars out of 5.0. Positive reviewers found the device easy to install even for do-it-yourselfers and liked the powerful output.
Customers on the unhappy end of the spectrum experienced what they considered to be premature breakdowns.
The Delight Of Hot Water
There’s nothing better than a hot shower or bath after a long day at work or a long trip. That’s why water heaters have become such indispensable appliances.
Which water heater is the best? That's going to depend on many factors that are particular to your case. Bigger homes will need more capacity..
We like the fact that Rinnai has a full line of water heaters available to serve your needs. They are affordable, easy to understand, and relatively simple to install. They also have history on their side as a 100-year-old company.
While we can’t know what your situation is, we would lean toward the reliability of Rinnai.
Have you tried a Rinnai? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!