Home>Discussions>PLUMBING>What kind of hot water heater should I get?
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rcb
Re: What kind of hot water heater should I get?
Max ****man wrote:

JacktheShack:
Awesome info. Thanks for your time, I really appreciate it.

A couple of questions:
1. Do you know, if I have an outside tank with a tank cover, can I use #2 fuel oil?
2. Here are my local costs for fuel. Propane $2.40/g, Fuel Oil $3.05/g, and electricity is $.09/kwh ($.054/kwh off peak). Plugging these numbers in, indicates that Fuel Oil beats propane, but electricity beats both. Am I off base?
3. Why is an indirect water heater highly recommended? Is it much more efficient? I'm having a difficult time calculating any cost savings/justifying the extra cost (vs electric).

Thanks again!

Cost of ownership should always be considered when making any decision, a bargain could end up as a bottomless hole in your wallet.

$3.05 of fuel oil gets you 140,000 btu's
$3.05 of electricity gets you 68,000 btu's (assuming 2000 btu's / kwh and $.09/kwh)
So if you heat anything with electricity (home/water) it will cost you about double over oil.
Propane is also deceiving, it is cheaper than oil by the gallon however only has about 80,000 btu's (I'm converting from metric in my head but wont be far off)
Natural gas has the lowest btu's per cubic metre however is also very inexpensive by comparison. This was not an option for us so we went oil (from an electric furnace & water which saved us about $3000 / yr which paid for the upgrade the 1st year)

This is unfortunate since electricity converts to heat at 100% efficiency (there is no waste) and is easy to deliver. Electricity from solar, wind, and hydro uses no natural resources nor produces atomic waste that needs to be managed for 250,000 years (a.k.a. FOREVER - prepare for higher electricity costs when utilities start passing this cost along.)
The question for the Electric Utilities is why is electricity so expensive? (Sorry had the urge to rant a little)

Something to consider is we got a little hassle from the insurance people due to our outdoor fuel oil tank. They want it replaced every 20 years, it now must be double lined, and they wanted it protected from falling ice. They would not insure the house without compliance and some companies were down right stupid about the outdoor tank. I just don't want the tank inside my house - space, smell, overfilling accidents, etc. They do not want the environmental risk of the tank leaking into the ground, this may be a regional thing but they all follow suit eventually (I'm in Ontario Canada)

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