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Water Heater Standards | Plumber Fort Worth

Water Heater Standards | Plumber Fort Worth

New Water Heater Standards| Plumber Fort Worth

The New NAECA EF Water Heater Standards

The new water heater standards will go into effect on April 16, 2015. The 2015 NAECA energy efficiency mandates require higher energy factor ratings on almost all residential gas and electric water heaters. The new standards may affect homeowner’s in the need for additional space being needed to house the larger new water heaters. Furthermore, additional venting and the means of removing condensate may be required. Installation should only be provided by a qualified, licensed plumber in Fort Worth.

Energy Factor is defined as the measure of overall efficiency for appliances. In this case the water heater EF is based on the following three factors:

  • The recovery efficiency (RE) is how efficiently the heat from the energy source is transferred to the water.
  • Stand-by loss is the percentage of heat loss per hour from the stored water compared to the heat content of the water.
  • Cycling losses is the loss of heat as the water circulates through a water heater tank, and/or inlet and outlet pipes.

The new water heater standards mean that manufacturers cannot produce or sell lower-efficiency water heaters after April 15, 2015. However, wholesalers will be able to sell the remaining products in their warehouses until the inventory is gone. The new standards won’t affect all water heaters, as a number of manufacturers were already producing models whose efficiency were in compliance with the new standards or are more compliant than is required. The majority of on demand water heaters exceeds the new standards and won’t be affected.

Residential water heaters will receive a modest boost averaging 4 percent in efficiency, according to the Department of Energy standards. The greatest changes occur in water heaters 55 gallons and above, requiring them to utilize new technologies such as an electric heat pump (also called hybrid water heaters) water heater, and gas condensing technologies, to attain the mandated efficiency gains. Depending upon the technology used, the water heaters in this category can cut their energy consumption by 25 to 50 percent. In addition, they will be a candidate for a homeowner install, requiring a licensed plumber in Fort Worth for professional installation.

Increased Insulation

A requirement that may significantly affect homeowners is the increase in insulation, resulting in a larger water heater size. Water heaters up to 55 gallons will be 1 to 2 inches taller, with a diameter increase of 2 inches. Water heaters located in confined spaces, such as a closet may require relocation, or expansion of the space to accommodate the larger water heater. Relocation will require the use of a licensed plumber in Fort Worth to provide new water supply and hook up.

Gas Water Heaters

Gas models in compliance with the new mandates will incorporate newer flue baffling technologies, including the flue dampers, and will feature electronic ignition rather than a standing pilot. Gas models over 55 gallons will utilize high efficiency condensing combustion technology. This may mean the installation of electricity to the water heater location if not already present, as well as providing for condensate drainage disposal.

Conventional gas water heaters lose much of the energy burned up the flue. Condensing water heaters are designed to reclaim a significant portion of the escaping heat by cooling the exhaust gases well below 140 degrees F, where water vapor in the exhaust condenses into water.

Natural draft gas models without external electric supply will still be available. However, residential 60 to 100 gallon supply water heaters have been discontinued. Electric Water Heaters

Larger capacity electric water heaters of 55 gallons and above will incorporate integrated heat pumps in order to meet the new EF requirements. Heat pump water heaters provide an annual savings of about 60 percent over electric models only. Heat pump models ensure heat pump operation down to ambient temperatures as low as 35 degrees, below this temperature the water heater changes over to an electric resistance mode, and reduced energy efficiency.

Increased Complexity

In addition, the increased weight and complexity of water heater technology and installation requirements will impact homeowners. Due to these factors, an accurate, safe and proper installation will be well beyond the means of the average homeowner, and DIY installation is highly discouraged. Professional installation by a qualified plumber in Fort Worth is strongly recommended, and may be required to maintain the warranty.

The positive side of the updates is the increased energy efficiency, and environmental impact.

A Benjamin Franklin plumber in Fort Worth is always up-to-date on new plumbing technologies, new water heater standards and their implications in maintenance, repair and installation. When you require water heater repair in Fort Worth, water heater installation or maintenance, a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Fort Worth will provide the plumbing service you need, and the expertise a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Fort Worth is known for. Benjamin Franklin Plumbing serves Fort Worth, Arlington and the surrounded areas. We are a member of the BBB with an A+ rating.