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You’d be amazed to know that, an average household uses up to 100 gallons of hot water per day. This fact roughly provides an idea about how much water and energy gets wasted annually. Luckily, we have seen enough technological advancement to ensure that hot water solution is not costly anymore. A best propane tankless water heater is the result of such efforts.
There are different types of tankless water heaters in the market right now – Propane, natural gas and electric.
After thorough research, we have picked 5 trending propane tankless water heaters that we found to be the best. In this article, we will discuss about these 5 of the best propane tankless water heater and their features. We will also try to cover the benefits of having a propane tankless water heater and what to look for.
So What Exactly is A Propane Tankless Water Heater?
Before diving into the technical terms, first you need to understand what a propane tankless water heater is and how they work. In this review article, we will try to make everything simple for you as much as possible.
Propane gas tank water heaters have been in the market for almost a century now. The whole process requires a large storage facility (tank) and the heater heats water when it is required.
But that is not the case for tankless water heaters. A propane tankless water heater is basically an “on-demand” water heating system. Therefore, you don’t need a tank to store the water. Water only goes through the tap/pipe only when you need to heat it.
How Does a Propane Tankless Water Heaters Work?
In the 21st century, tankless water heaters are becoming increasingly popular among the households. They are energy and cost efficient in the long run and provide numerous other benefits. To understand how a propane tankless water heater works, first we need to look at how modern air conditioners work.
An air conditioner blows air into a refrigerant coil that cools the air and circulates it through a duct system. The circulated air then cools down the room temperature.
A tankless water heater works in the same nature. In a propane tankless water heater, water flows through a coil. This coil is heated by a gas ignited burner, which in turn warms up the water. Just like an air conditioner, you can preset the desired temperature. When you open the tap, the hot water travels through it for use. And when the tap is closed or the water temperature is on desired point, the heater shuts down automatically.
These water heaters use technology to sense demand and adapt accordingly, without the need of a storage facility. That’s why they are called “On-Demand” heating system.
Best Propane Tankless Water Heater Riviews in 2020
1. TAKAGI TH3OSLP Tankless Water Heater
Takagi has been delivering cutting hot water solutions for over 60 years. Manufactured in Japan; this model weighs only 59 pounds and suitable for wall mounting.
Features at a glance
- Item Dimension:8 x 15.6 x 33.2 inches
- Flow rate: 10 GPM (Gallon per minute)
- Voltage: AC 120V
- Maximum BTUs: 199,000
- Minimum BTUs: 0
- Water Connection Location: Bottom
- Water Connection: 3/4″
TAKAGI TH3OSLP Tankless Water Heater is adored by many customers because of its unique thermistor. It is both inlet and outlet. Therefore, you can always keep an eye on the water temperature. It comes with a remote temperature controller for increased flexibility and efficiency.
It has two types of heat exchangers. The primary heat exchanger uses copper alloy. It can transfer heat 25 times faster than regular stainless steel. But for secondary heat exchange, it uses 316L stainless steel. It is due to the fact that metals have the tendency to corrode and stainless steel is used for preventing that. The radiant heating feature ensures that it saves both gas and electricity as much as possible. This model is designed for outdoor installation. So, venting is not required.
TH3OSLP model is also renowned for using low emission technology, making it environment friendly. It has an energy factor of 0.95 for propane. It emits less than 20pmm, which complies with the Ultra-Low NOx regulation.
- Radiant heating option allows you to save energy. Environment friendly
- Hot water flow rate is high enough for residential applications
- Does not work efficiently on high altitude as it can take longer to heat the water.
2. Rinnai V Series HE Tankless Hot Water Heater
Before we talk about this magnificent water heater, you first need to get a hold of the difference between an indoor and outdoor tankless water heater.
In terms of efficiency and water heating process, both type work in the same manner. The only difference is that – an indoor tankless water heater is installed inside the house, whereas an outdoor one is required to be installed outside. An outdoor tankless water heater doesn’t need any venting. But if you purchase the indoor type, make sure there is a proper ventilation system.
Now that the confusion if clear, let’s talk about this amazing product – Rinnai V Series HE Tankless Hot Water Heater.
Rinnai launched two models here; V65iP model is for indoor installation and V53DeP for outdoor installation. Both models have pretty much the same features except in case for installation.
Features at a glance
- Item weight:6 pounds (indoor) and 33 pounds (outdoor)
- Product dimension:9 x 8.8 x 23.6 inches (indoor), 33.3 x 17.7 x 12.9 inches (outdoor)
- Flow rate:5 GPM (indoor), 5.3 GPM (outdoor)
- Energy Factor: 82
Rinnai tankless water heaters use a unique technology called “ThermaCirc360”. It minimizes the wait time for hot water by recirculating it through pipe. As a result, you get hot water on the instant.
Its innovative and compact design allows it to be installed anywhere. This is a plus point for small to medium houses where free space is a major factor.
Rinnai V Series HE Tankless Hot Water Heater is also energy efficient. Its compact design allows it to cut down CO2 emission and preserve water. Rinnai claims that this model uses 40% less energy than the tank type models. It is also certified for Ultra Low NOx.
Furthermore, it provides great warranty deal that can hardly be matched by other competitors. It provides 10 years of warranty for residential heat exchanger and 5 years for residential parts. So, it is safe to say that this propane tankless water heater can last for 15-20 years.
- Allows you to remotely control and monitor the heater using a mobile app. Wi-Fi enabled.
- Compact design and energy efficiency makes it ideal for small to medium houses.
- Both indoor and outdoor versions are available.
- Has a relatively lower hot water flow rate.
3. Rinnai RL Series HE+ Tankless Hot Water Heater
It seems that very few companies are as versatile as Rinnai. Beside the V series, they also have another product line called “RL’’. This series has numerous models which are non-condensing tankless water heaters. In this review article, we will discuss about two models – RL94iP for indoor installation and RL75eP for outdoor installation. Both of them run on propane and have similar characteristics.
Features at a glance
- Item weight: RL94iP – 46.3 pounds, RL75eP – 43.6 lb
- Product Dimension: RL94iP – 14 x 10 x 23 inches, RL75eP – 14 x 9.6 x 24.3 inches
- Flow rate: RL94iP – 9.4 GPM, RL75eP – 7.5GPM
- Energy Factor: 82
The best thing about this model is its “Circ-Logic technology”. It lets you set pattern for water recirculation. This built-in technology lets you set a time for the heater to provide hot water. So, your water heater becomes habitual with your lifestyle!
Wi-Fi monitoring is another interesting feature this model possesses. You can control and monitor the heater’s performance via phone/laptop. It gives you extra flexibility to your life!
This model is also designed in such a way that you can save energy. With an energy factor of 0.82, Rinnai RL Series HE+ Tankless Hot Water Heater uses 40% less energy than traditional models.
What we like most about Rinnai products is that parts of the heaters are replaceable. So, if one day you find defect in one part, you can easily fix/change it without having to buy a whole new heater.
- Circ-Logic Capable. You can set your own recirculation pattern
- Both indoor and outdoor versions are available
- Provides longer warranty than most competitors
- Not energy star qualified
Best Portable Propane Tankless Water Heater
Some of us are outdoor person, some people like to jump on an RV and disappear. For those, portable water heater can be the ideal companion – because wherever you go, you will always feel the need to use hot water. Keeping that in mind, we are going to give reviews on 2 portable propane tankless water heaters which you will find useful.
1. Camplux 5L 1.32 GPM Outdoor Portable Propane Tankless Water Heater
If you like to go for camping or spend family vacation on mountain, Camplux 5L 1.32 GPM Outdoor Portable Propane Tankless Water Heater can add a great value to your life. It is compact and can also be mounted on wall. So you can use it in your RV.
Features at a glance
- Item Weight:11 pounds
- Product Dimensions:4 x 4.3 x 14.8 inches
- Batteries: 4 Lithium Metal batteries required.
- Flow Rate:32 GPM
- Hose Length: 5 Feet
Included Components: AY132 Tankless Water Heater, Shower Head and hose, CSA Regulator, Installation Hardware Packs
Camplux 5L tankless water heater requires the lowest water pressure in the market right now. With just 3.0 PSI of water pressure, this heater can comfortably operate at a flow rate of 1.2GPM. Since the heater requires low pressure to work, its operating cost is much less than you’d expect. This astonishing feature mainly caught our eyes and made it to the list.
This portable tankless water heater is powered by 2 “D” cell batteries. It also provides over heat protection, anti-freezing protection and safety shut off protection. These are standard prerequisite for a portable propane tankless water heater.
Camplux 5L portable tankless water heater requires no electricity to operate. Also, its installation method is very easy. Anyone can install it using the installation hardware pack included in the package. All these things together make it an ideal outdoor hot water solution.
- Features different types of safety measures
- Water pressure requirement is the lowest in the market. Therefore it is cost effective
- Can be installed indoor as well if there is a ventilation system
- The shower head has no on/off switch.
2. Eccotemp L5 Portable Outdoor Tankless Water Heater
The last one in this list is also a portable tankless water heater called Eccotemp L5. Having an origin in Summerville SC USA, Eccotemp has been constantly utilizing technological advancements for the betterment of the traditional families. Their L5 model represents their strong belief. This model requires liquid propane to operate and powered by 2 “D” cell batteries for electronic ignition.
Features at a glance
- Item Weight:2 pounds
- Item Dimensions:4 x 4.8 x 15.9 inches
- Power Type: Liquid Propane (LP)
- Flow Rate:5 GPM
- Temperature Range: 50-140 degrees Fahrenheit
- Included components: On/Off shower head, CSA regulator for use with standard 20lb grill propane tank, Garden hose adapter and instruction manual
Eccotemp L5 Portable Tankless water heater operates at 20 PSI and can 1.5 GPM of water flow. You can also get your desired temperature ranging from 50-140F. It weighs a lot less than most portable tankless water heaters, making it suitable for outdoor activities.
The best thing about L5 model is that it can be used for wide range of activities. It comes with a shower head and a long hose. So you can easily install it to take a shower, wash your car or even wash your pets.
- Compatible with the EccoFlo 12v Water pump rated at 3GPM
- Customized settings, safety shut-off feature gets activated when the heater runs more than 20 minutes
- Great for camping, outdoor shower or washing pets.
- Faces difficulty to operate when the wind is strong
Things to Consider Before Buying Purchase Your Water Heater
Going tankless means keeping yourself up to date with the latest technologies. But before buying anything, you should consider all sides. Most importantly, you must understand whether the product is suitable for you or not.
Here, we will try to help you by identifying key points you need to consider –
- Hot water demand: Not all houses require the same amount of hot water every day. Most importantly, the demand has seasonal variation. So before buying a propane tankless water heater, you should estimate your demand and look for something that matches it. Generally, a heater with a flow rate of 5-7GPM is enough for a household of 4 person. If the heater is only used for outdoor applications, the demand should be much lower.
- Space for installation: This is another important point to consider. Water heaters nowadays are designed according to specific needs. Your installation place should tell you what kind of tankless water heater is ideal for you. Also, ventilation is a major thing to consider. A propane tankless water heater for outdoor installation doesn’t require any ventilation system, but the case is different for an indoor tankless water heater.
- Maintenance cost: Operating and maintenance cost varies depending on the hot water location, size of the heater and fuel. Luckily, propane tankless water heaters can cut down your fuel cost as much as 50%. It’s because they’re “On-Demand” water heaters. They are also compact in size and come with many safety features. So, buying a propane tankless water heater will save you a fortune in the long run.
Benefits of Having Propane Tankless Water Heater
- Energy Efficient: Propane tankless water heaters have higher energy factor ranging from 0.80 – 0.99. They are also cost-effective in the long run.
- Environment Friendly: Propane tankless water heaters have 50% lower emission rate than electric tank-type water heaters.
- Safer option: The tankless water heaters discussed above feature numerous safety options. Normally, you won’t have to worry about water leaking.
- Saves valuable space: A propane tankless water heater can save you up to 12 square foot of floor space. Some heaters can be wall-mounted as well.
- Instant hot water: The new propane tankless water heaters can reach your desired temperature in less than 20 seconds.
Buying a Tankless water heater is the best solution for small/medium households. Some of the heaters run both on natural gas or liquid propane. And if you consider your water heater to be a long-term investment, then buying a tankless one will provide higher benefit for you.