Rheem Hybrid Water Heater Installation Questions

Help Support Plumbing Forums:

zwell

Active Member
Sponsor
Joined
May 5, 2020
Messages
26
Reaction score
2
Location
Seattle
Thanks to everyone that's has continued to help us.

In our continuing research we are trying to understand if it's possible to easily collect enough information to vet someone's home for a hybrid water heater without visiting the site.

As an example case, here are some images + information from a home: there is a 23 year old electric tank heater in a laundry/utility room in the basement which we plan on removing and replacing with a Rheem Professional ProTerra Hybrid Electric Water Heater. The current water heater is on a 220volt/30 amp circuit. The attached picture shows the panel with labels on the right hand side; the second one is a close up of the specific breaker for the hot water tank. I assume we would use the existing wiring for a new water heater. Or is there a need for an additional connection to the main panel? If so, we could have an issue of space on the panel, although you might notice that we have several breakers in the "off" position - baseboard heaters we have not used for years (and are disconnected).

From what you can tell, would a hybrid water heater work in this case? To someone with a trained eye, are the pictures and/or descriptions enough information?

What other information would you ideally have prior to make sure the installation would work?

Are there any other questions you'd want to know before going on site to install the hybrid water heater?

How long would you estimate it would take to do this install?
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Mitchell-DIY-Guy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2019
Messages
204
Reaction score
59
Location
North Carolina
The Rheem water heater you are speaking of is a heat pump water heater, hence the term "hybrid". Simplifying, basically it's an air sourced heat pump used to heat water instead of air. Understand that in doing so, you are going to throw off cool air. If that cool air is going into otherwise conditioned space, you may have to heat that air with other means. Just something to think about. They can be ducted as well, which would add to your headroom requirement (and installation cost); That spec sheet noted below has a good amount of detail requirements.

That Rheem comes in three basic models: ProTerra with LeakGuard, ProTerra 30 Amp, and ProTerra 15 Amp without Leak Guard. All three models come in 40, 50, 65 and 80 gallon varieties. Go here for the spec sheet:


Based on your photo -2387, you will need to check headroom.

Looks to me like the 30A breaker can be used, but check codes; they may now require GFCI and or Arc Fault breakers on such equipment. The wiring can probably be used; however best to check whether its copper or aluminum. If aluminum you may need special connectors.

One other thing to check is the first hour rating on the existing water heater vs the hybrid. If they differ much, the customer may not be that happy, in which case you may need to upsize the tank size, raise the temperature, or settle expectations.

My random thoughts for the day.
 

zwell

Active Member
Sponsor
Joined
May 5, 2020
Messages
26
Reaction score
2
Location
Seattle
Hey Mitchell, that's really helpful. Thanks for sharing those thoughts. Great feedback man.

The Rheem water heater you are speaking of is a heat pump water heater, hence the term "hybrid". Simplifying, basically it's an air sourced heat pump used to heat water instead of air. Understand that in doing so, you are going to throw off cool air. If that cool air is going into otherwise conditioned space, you may have to heat that air with other means. Just something to think about. They can be ducted as well, which would add to your headroom requirement (and installation cost); That spec sheet noted below has a good amount of detail requirements.

That Rheem comes in three basic models: ProTerra with LeakGuard, ProTerra 30 Amp, and ProTerra 15 Amp without Leak Guard. All three models come in 40, 50, 65 and 80 gallon varieties. Go here for the spec sheet:


Based on your photo -2387, you will need to check headroom.

Looks to me like the 30A breaker can be used, but check codes; they may now require GFCI and or Arc Fault breakers on such equipment. The wiring can probably be used; however best to check whether its copper or aluminum. If aluminum you may need special connectors.

One other thing to check is the first hour rating on the existing water heater vs the hybrid. If they differ much, the customer may not be that happy, in which case you may need to upsize the tank size, raise the temperature, or settle expectations.

My random thoughts for the day.
 

breplum

Professional
Professional
Joined
Nov 14, 2017
Messages
534
Reaction score
176
Location
Lafayette, CA
No electrician here, but I think there is a problem if your new equipment is too far off, amps-wise, from the existing breaker.
roughly speaking, you want your breaker to be some percentage off the spec'd load, not way off.
You need an electrical contractor to be advising you on that.
 

Mitchell-DIY-Guy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2019
Messages
204
Reaction score
59
Location
North Carolina
It’s simple. The spec sheet calls for 30A breaker. That’s what they have...but that AFCI and or GFCI requirement? Code question...
 

zwell

Active Member
Sponsor
Joined
May 5, 2020
Messages
26
Reaction score
2
Location
Seattle
It’s simple. The spec sheet calls for 30A breaker. That’s what they have...but that AFCI and or GFCI requirement? Code question...
Thanks Mitchell. We plan on checking on the code soon for permitting.
 
Top