I need a new Water Heater asap - any good ideas where to get one?

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Forum topic by Mogebier posted 02-22-2010 05:08 PM 3189 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Mogebier's profile


170 posts in 2454 days

02-22-2010 05:08 PM

Our Water Heater started leaking out the bottom last night. So far I have 2 different bids of $1500-ish each. Just kill me :)

Anyone do business with some company that was good and also inexpensive lately?
I’m in the St. Louis area.

-- You can get more with a kind word and a 2 by 4, than you can with just a kind word.

17 replies so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2495 days

#1 posted 02-22-2010 05:15 PM

I know that this will be even more expensive but, when my water heater fails, I’m switching to a tankless water heater. They cost more, but they do save energy and, in time, pay for themselves.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View lew's profile


11264 posts in 3176 days

#2 posted 02-22-2010 05:18 PM

DIY, it is really easy and you will save a bundle. They now have solderless install kits.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 2868 days

#3 posted 02-22-2010 05:24 PM

I have changed out water heaters on three different occasions. Its fairly easy to do and the cost was around $250. Hardest part is draining the tank. Last time i couldnt get mine to drain, and i ended up using a dolly and i wheeled it out of the house while it was full. If you end up having to solder pipe it gets a little harder. I have only had to do that once and had to get someone to help me.(i wasnt sure how to do it) I think they also make compression fittings that dont require solder. DO NOT PAY $1500.
good luck

-- RKWoods

View Mogebier's profile


170 posts in 2454 days

#4 posted 02-22-2010 05:27 PM

I really have no interest in doing plumbing myself :) Plumbing is not a thing I am good at. Also, I have no friends around until the evening to help me move things.
I have been looking into tankless, and they are more expensive at first, but do offer savings. From what I have read though, they tend to lose a lot of water pressure when you put too much of a load on them, like if the dish washer is on and 2 people try and take a shower, etc. With the way my wife is, that would be her taking a shower and me trying to wash my hands :)
And they will not run in a power outtage. And over the last few years, we have had a bunch of 2-3 days outtages and 1 in the winter, and it was nice to have hot water.

Oh and for code in STL County, we need an expansion tank and gas shut off valve, which I do not have on my heater as present. So there is a lot of extra plumbing involved.

-- You can get more with a kind word and a 2 by 4, than you can with just a kind word.

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 2868 days

#5 posted 02-22-2010 05:27 PM

Just be sure to have water source shut when you disconnect it. And gas or elect.

-- RKWoods

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 2868 days

#6 posted 02-22-2010 05:28 PM

yeah, definately some benefits to tankless, but also drawbacks. How often do you have power outages?

-- RKWoods

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 2489 days

#7 posted 02-22-2010 05:30 PM

If you’re hiring everything out, those aren’t bad prices.

It isn’t just buying a new WH. The total job includes: – Buying a new WH – Haul it to your house – Shutdown, drain, and remove the old one (can get complicated depending on location) – Installing new WH, water lines, siesmic restraints if required, and thermal blanket (if used) – Reconnect and test gas line, and light WH burner – Clean up – Dispose of old WH (legally – not in the ditch down the road. – lol)

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View KnotWright's profile


252 posts in 2909 days

#8 posted 02-22-2010 05:32 PM

I too suggest if you can afford the upfront cost, switch to the tankless water heater, not only do you save move in the long run, there are still federal tax breaks for installing them. I’ve installed 3 of them for customers and haven’t had any problems with them.

The TK Junior model provides enough hot water for the bath, kitchen and laundry going at the same time in most cases. You can do an online search for an installer in your area if you are sure you can do it.

I researched these before I installed the first one. they are by far the easiest to maintain and come with a decent warranty also.

-- James

View SPalm's profile


5249 posts in 3303 days

#9 posted 02-22-2010 05:37 PM

That seems quite expensive to me. They are really easy to replace, and meant to be replaced. Only two water connections, and either gas or electric. Probably faster to do it yourself. Hardest part is usually carrying away the old one, but you can just push it to the side and get someone to come get it later. New ones are pretty light to carry. Make sure to fill the new one with water before re-applying power (don’t ask me how I know).

But if it is starting to leak, turn off the water NOW and drain it. You really do not want the sucker to totally fail as it will be a huge mess to clean up.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View bunkie's profile


412 posts in 2568 days

#10 posted 02-22-2010 05:41 PM

I’ve replaced several gas HW heaters. If you have the skills and the means to transport the new heater and haul away the old one, it’s about a 4-hour job (assuming that the big-box store is relatively close by). Electrical ones are even easier.

In my opinion, if you’re skilled enough to work wood, you should learn to cut and solder copper pipe. The tools are cheap (under $50) and there is nothing like the peace of mind of knowing that you can handle that inevitable 3AM Sunday morning burst pipe without having to get a plumber. I have a propane torch, pipe cutter, emery cloth, solder and flux and a small selection of copper fittings and pipe on hand at all times.

-- Altruism is, ultimately, self-serving

View John Ormsby's profile

John Ormsby

1283 posts in 3158 days

#11 posted 02-22-2010 05:41 PM

I think Home Depot and Lowes offer water heater installations for much less. You might give them a call if you have them in your area. Should be much less.

-- Oldworld, Fair Oaks, Ca

View Mogebier's profile


170 posts in 2454 days

#12 posted 02-22-2010 05:42 PM

SPalm… Yeah, I shut off the water and the gas last night after I saw the leak. The problem is that my WH doesn’t have a drain. Nope. It doesn’t. It has a place for the hose to go, but it’s some odd plastic thing and there is no valve or handle to turn on it to start the water draining. It must turn somehow, but I skinned my palm trying to turn it last night and figured if I use a tool, I would just break it off because it’s plastic :(

-- You can get more with a kind word and a 2 by 4, than you can with just a kind word.

View Dkol's profile


71 posts in 2782 days

#13 posted 02-22-2010 05:50 PM

Ended up having to replace ours last month. $400+ and about 6 hrs work including the trip to HD to pickup the new heater, 2 trips to the hardware store and another to HD after the local store closed. Only problem encountered was the height difference making the connections difficult. Flexible input and output connections make it real easy. Wiring pretty straight forward 2 color coded wires, wire nuts and the ground.

Word of advice, replace all of the connections regardless of how good they look, would have saved me a trip to the HD.

Finished at 8:00 PM – much needed hot shower at 9:00.

Our trash collection has appliance pickup, just had to make a call, no extra charge.

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 2868 days

#14 posted 02-22-2010 05:51 PM

That is the same problem i had Mogebier, and as stated earlier, i was able to dolly the thing out and i didnt spill any. I had a pretty stout guy helping me.(always a good idea)

-- RKWoods

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 2868 days

#15 posted 02-22-2010 05:52 PM

of coarse the water and inlet were both on top of tank. Might be hard to do with a side configuration

-- RKWoods

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