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Old    David Williams (wakeworld)      Join Date: Jan 1997       05-03-2011, 11:29 AM Reply   
I've got a water heater that's probably 30 years old and needs to be replaced. I had someone come in and take a look at it and they want over $1,200 worth of "add-ons" to bring it up to code. That $1,200 DOES NOT include the cost of the water heater!! Sure seems like I'm getting taken. I don't have time to do this job myself, so I definitely need to have somebody do it for me. Any suggestions? Would I save money by going with an on-demand water heating solution? Attached is the list of crap they want to charge me for...

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Old    Tim C (lifetimewarranty)      Join Date: Oct 2008       05-03-2011, 11:34 AM Reply   
I had mine quoted a few years back and it was around a grand. Did it myself for about 3 hundred bucks and a serious pita, but it only took a few hours.

So, yes and no...to your question.

If you got 30 years out of your water heater then you should be patting yourself on the back. They only last around 7-10 in my experience.
Old    John Anderson (fly135)      Join Date: Jun 2004       05-03-2011, 11:47 AM Reply   
I got mine through Home Depot and didn't pay any of that. Why are they replacing so much stuff?
Old    Steve (NuBu)      Join Date: Apr 2010       05-03-2011, 12:07 PM Reply   
I recently had mine replaced and I would say that seems a little steep for what he is doing (but I also live in a different state). Mine was about 20 years old and the codes have changed in our city since then too so some updating was required as well. We also have a gas water heater. I chose to do what I could myself and pay for the parts that required a licensed plumber to do. Overall I came out around $1,200 but that included the tank. One thing I learned the hard way is all hot water tanks are definitely not the same. I'm not here to bash any company so I will just say do your homework on what you're buying. A little bit of Googling will make a big difference. Good luck.
Old    Dave (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       05-03-2011, 12:10 PM Reply   
Hot water on demand does cost more initially but will save you in the long run as your won't be using gas/hydro to heat it 247/365.
Old    zakman (zacky)      Join Date: Apr 2003       05-03-2011, 9:03 PM Reply   
In my opinion, a tankless water heater is the only way to go. As mentioned, it is a little more expensive right off the bat, but I had one installed 2 years ago and it has almost paid for itself when you factor in the cost savings of not having to keep 60+ gallons of water hot 24/7.

Pretty much the only downside (if you want to call it that) is that it does take a little bit longer for the hot water to reach the furthest faucet from the water heater. This could be attributed to the restricted flow faucets rather than the water heater itself...
Old    GD (diamonddad)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-03-2011, 11:03 PM Reply   
I recently replaced my water heater as it had rusted out. I checked with Lowes who charged a flat rate fo something like $250 and Home Depot who nickel and dimed me. In the end, I would have been better off going with Lowes. Water heater plus install bringing everythign to code was $1,400 with Home Depot.
Old    Joe B (sailing216)      Join Date: Oct 2007       05-04-2011, 5:28 AM Reply   
Depending on where you live, that doesn't sound too excessive. Yes, 7-10yrs is the lifespan. Sounds like code is to have a overflow drainpan, new plumbing, venting.

Plumber friend did mine under the table for $450 on a new home that was up to code (drain saved our basement), so just replaced tank. He said $650-800 between the labor, hauling, and union fees if I didn't know him.

After watching him, I could do it myself in an hour versus his 20 min. My plumbing experience is soldering some metal in shop class decades ago.
Old    C.I.E. J-Rod (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       05-04-2011, 7:50 AM Reply   
Dave. I had the same problem. My HW Heater exhaust system and 1980 installation was said to be unsafe. My sears heater also lasted 30 years!

I went tankless. Paid out the wazoo, but i like it a lot better. It lives in the basement now, out of the way. Now I only pay for what I use.
Old    Big D (bigdtx)      Join Date: Feb 2005       05-04-2011, 8:44 AM Reply   
A lot of that stuff looks like code upgrades. If you are even considering selling all of that stuff will get caught in an inspection and you'll have to do it anyway. I guess you could shop price or do Like I did and buy one swap it out yourself - it's not that hard. If you don't have a pan under it, get one while you're at it.
Old    David Williams (wakeworld)      Join Date: Jan 1997       05-05-2011, 4:50 PM Reply   
It had to get done, so I swallowed hard and did it. At least this thread made me feel a little better about the price!
Old    Tim C (lifetimewarranty)      Join Date: Oct 2008       05-05-2011, 5:08 PM Reply   
HAHA, Dave - yeah - Momma doesn't like cold showers, huh?

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