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Powered anode rod included with water heater  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: Sat Oct 23rd, 2010 05:40 am
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Geno_3245
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1) I think it's interesting that a manufacturer has included a powered anode rod on their model. I believe this is the first water heater with a powered anode rod.
If there are others I would like to hear.
Reliant heat pump

2) Also, it the Japanese are developing a CO2 heat-pump water heater
Market development pdf
Dakin pump pdf


The CO2 water heater > looks like a lot to put in the basement at this stage of development

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 Posted: Sat Oct 23rd, 2010 03:20 pm
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eleent
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Hello:  Here's one you might find interesting.  They have powered anodes as an option on most of their glass lined tanks.  You'll see they have a range of other water heating technologies.  Too bad their English is funny  (they think a torch is actually a flashlight) :cool:

http://www.andrewswaterheaters.co.uk/products_search.php

Yours,  Larry

ps.  Here's some more info on the Japanese Eco Cute heat pump heater.
http://www.homeenergy.org/article_full.php?id=561

There are lots if interesting ideas floating around this world!

Last edited on Sat Oct 23rd, 2010 03:31 pm by eleent

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 Posted: Sat Oct 23rd, 2010 10:38 pm
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Geno_3245
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You are right, there are a lot of interesting energy ideas today.

Heat-pump-water-heater appears to be a concept-in-development.
Powered anode rod seems a better idea for the day-to-day consumer.

The water heater heat pump article linked-to above promises up to 50% reduction in energy.

I don't think that figure is supportable by evidence. I would rather see a chart that shows side-by-side testing results.

The fact that there are no side-by-side tests by manufacturers casts suspicion on the product ... mostly because it would be easy for the manufacturers to set up those tests. And reading exaggerated promises reduces believability across the board.

Missing too from the heat-pump-water-heater conversation are lists of customer testimonials that support GE's claim that customers will save $23-32 per month on their electric bill. It seems if people suddenly noticed a drop in their electric bill, that people would be waving a flag, and a big company like GE would certainly get that good news paraded onto the TV talk shows. But we hear nothing.

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 Posted: Sun Oct 24th, 2010 01:41 am
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eleent
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Hello:  Heat pump units don't do well at higher water temps.  That's a given.  Andrews Water heaters gets around this by using their heat pump as a preheater and advertise a coefficient of performance (COP) of three.  That's three times more hot water per unit of electricity than you get with traditional heating!  I've not seen anybody in the US think of it this way.  Andrews is thinking commercial applications, but commercial technology does often trickle down to residential application.  Refrigeration comes to mind. 

The Japanese ECO Cute unit takes advantage of the huge difference in cost of electricity in Japan between day and night.  It does a day's worth of heating overnight so no "expensive" power will need to be bought for water heating.  That concept might not work as well here.  Anyway, it still is good to see how the rest of the world stays in hot water ;)

To Geno's point, I'd also want to know what service costs are going to be on the new heat pump units.  That could play large in their cost effectiveness picture.

Yours,  Larry

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 Posted: Sun Oct 24th, 2010 05:38 am
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Geno_3245
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Thanks Larry.

I agree, heat pump heaters are made for low-consumption households that allow for lengthy recovery. In which case why buy a large expensive unit? Why not buy a small, inexpensive water heater, turn down the thermostat and cover it in a pile of insulation. In Japan, install a timer. Win-win cheaper all the way.

And I hear what you say about the co-efficient.

I see the math theory. I agree with the theory. But until the math is demonstrated in real-life customer settings, I am a stodgy skeptic. Some of us are more convinced that an airplane can fly when they show it can fly.

In any case, If I had a product that was as good as they say, I would put a meter on the thing and post the results for all to see. E-bay sells electric meters. You can even buy a cheap 240V hour meter. No reason for delay.

I think the water heater companies ought to put a meter on their products inside people's homes and give us real-world results instead of theory and promotion. But, call me old fashioned.


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 Posted: Sun Oct 24th, 2010 03:56 pm
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eleent
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Hello:  We've all heard of LEED, (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). They haven't been interested in putting meters on their buildings to see if they perform as the math says either.  A friend of mine, Henry Gifford is swimming upstream and taking them to task because he's measured and found LEED buildings to perform worse than non-LEED.  So, I completely agree with measuring.  In these cases, math is a tool for making educated guesses, but until we can accurately model human and machine behavior, we're gonna have to meter ;)  I'm working on my stodgy!

Yours,  Larry

ps.  There is a concept/device called a dashboard, which does as you suggest and puts a meter where the user can see exactly what his power demand is and (for advanced models) what it costs.  This instant feedback does much more to save energy than harping on turning off the lights will ever do.

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 Posted: Sun Oct 24th, 2010 09:50 pm
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Geno_3245
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I would like to have a look at the 'dashboard meter'

A google search turns up auto parts. And Apple computer items. But no electrical meter.

Do you have a search term or a link to the product mentioned?

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 Posted: Sun Oct 24th, 2010 11:35 pm
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eleent
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Hello:  Here's a link http://gigaom.com/cleantech/10-energy-dashboards-for-your-home/  The Energy Detective is one that's gotten good reviews.  I'm surprised they fail to mention the Kill-A-Watt meter, which is basic, cheap and easy.  It's not quite a dashboard, but rather an easy way to check individual appliances.

Yours,  Larry

ps. Anything by Martin Holladay is interesting to read  :cool:http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/book/export/html/15921

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 Posted: Sun Nov 7th, 2010 02:00 pm
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wmassey
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FWIW, AO Smith is including a powered anode in their "EFFEX" (GAHH) 40 & 50 gallon gas-fired water heaters. http://www.hotwater.com/products/residential/effex.html

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 Posted: Sun Nov 7th, 2010 04:52 pm
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elenano
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Thanks. I had heard that Smith had its own flavor of powered anode, but I didn't know what they were doing with it. I'd guess an Effex is a high-end heater.

Randy Schuyler

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 Posted: Sun Nov 7th, 2010 10:11 pm
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Geno_3245
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A quick search shows the Effex 40 gallon 40,000-BTU is around $900.
The 50 gallon 40,000-BTU is around $950.

Effex manual
The anode rod is a repair part.
The anode rod sensor lets electronic gas valve assess condition and send error code to display module located at top of tank.
Damage to anode rod occurs when tank is not completely full of water, so evidently the low-voltage transformer that supplies power to the water heater gas valve must be un-pluged when filling or flushing the tank.
The troubleshoot section is a robust 5 pages long plus a handy flowchart.
FVIR requires parts-replacement.
Air intake is cleanable screen, and is a repair part.
The diagrams are clear for how to disassemble and clean the burner.
The burner manifold has a gasket that seals the combustion chamber, evidently because the blower will push CO into the home if unit is not sealed.
The manifold gasket is a repair part that must be on hand when cleaning the burner, which is recommended yearly.




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 Posted: Mon Nov 8th, 2010 11:06 am
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wmassey
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Geno_3245 wrote:Damage to anode rod occurs when tank is not completely full of water..."
"FVIR requires parts-replacement."
"The manifold gasket is a repair part that must be on hand when cleaning the burner, which is recommended yearly.

Actually the manual says that damage to the TANK (not anode rod) will occur...
"Check that the tank is full of water. Never use this water heater unless it is completely full of water. To prevent damage to the tank, the tank must be filled with water. Water must flow from the hot water faucet before turning “ON” gas to the water heater."
... and that an "open anode" warning message is an indication that the tank may not be full of water. Operating the anode circuit with an empty tank will not damage the anode and it will not damage the circuit.
A search of the manual for "FVIR" does not turn up any mention of "requires replacement" although there are replacement parts available for it should they be needed. The only thing that I found that caused my eyebrow to raise was this statement made when discussing a "FV SENSE" (flammable vapors detected) error.
"System must be manually reset by entering a special FVS reset sequence into the Electronic Control Display. Contact a service agency to determine the cause and instructions on the reset sequence."
so it would seem that if you get too close to the heater with the wrong sort of hydrocarbon, you may be looking at a repair bill to have a technician who is privy to the secret reset code come by and work his magic.

As for manifold gasket replacement, the manual says "Replace door gasket if damaged" so while it would be good to have one on hand in case it does get damaged, it is not necessarily something that will get replaced every year.

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 Posted: Mon Nov 8th, 2010 12:00 pm
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Geno_3245
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Yes I did read that too fast.
Good thing we got folks with bigger glasses to keep the details straight.

Mystery how the anode would get damaged and need replacement.
And exactly how is the tank damaged when operated without being full?
Is it the build-up of steam pressure?

About the FVIR ... by golly, the FV system is manually reset, page 32:
System must be manually reset by entering a
special FVS reset sequence into the Electronic
Control Display. Contact a service agency to
determine the cause and instructions on the
reset sequence.

I will be more careful with my posts, and thank you for the information.

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 Posted: Wed Nov 10th, 2010 05:22 pm
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eleent
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Hello:  To me, the gist of the conversation is; we want efficient equipment, but we also want durable and I'll say elegantly simple equipment.  All these criteria taken together are very difficult to achieve.  But, what is the point in super efficient equipment if you have to pay out all of your savings to the repair guy? 

Complex things fail.  The simple glass lined tank is really a testament to simplicity even though it's usually not efficient.

Geno, I know this board gets some of the brightest "hot water" eyes in the world looking at it.  I have been and expect to get gently raked over hot coals periodically.  As long as the agenda is only to share ideas in a civilized sort of way, I hope to heal from my burns quickly as you will :cool:

Yours,  Larry

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 Posted: Thu Nov 11th, 2010 04:48 am
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Geno_3245
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Well, if I hadn't posted incorrect information, Mr wmassey might not have read the manual thoroughly and informed everybody with his sharp-eyed information.

In any case, it seems the powered anode rods are being added to water heaters.

And I agree with simple products that are cheap to repair by the homeowner.

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