Alternative to tankless water heater

One energy efficient alternative to a standard water heater is the hybrid water heater. It functions similar to a heat pump and uses much less energy. In some cases, the rebate from your electrical provider combined with tax credits will pay for the expense of the water heater completely.

My personal residence has a 35 year old water heater so I was looking at a replacement. I can get $500 in rebates with a hybrid. With the rebate and the energy savings, I think the payback would be less than 2 years for my family. Thanks for the heads up.

Would love one once my 26 year old electric has something go wrong with it but I can’t have a hybrid. They cannot be installed indoors in conditioned space. My garage drops down to below 30 degrees in the winter so that is out. The cost to replumb and move electric isn’t worth the savings with only two of us in the house.

I wonder how noisy they are when operating.

Yeah, they need to be located where it remains between 40 and 90 degrees all the time. And you need approx. 1,000 cu.ft. of uncooled space to get the heat from the air, I believe.
Worth looking into in some areas…

But more importantly, by how much degrees will it cool down the surrounding area…not a problem if you live in a hot climate zone but in a cold climate zone, it may be a problem/discomfort.

55 dB. So like a dishwasher.

Good point, Marcel.


After hearing many of these in garages around here, I can tell you they sound like the ice machine next to your hotel room at 3:00AM.


I just read Roy’s article, I had not heard of hybrid water heaters, sounds interesting, but if you are in an area where you heat your house, your hybrid would be ‘stealing’ the heat you are using to keep warm. Not an issue if you live in Florida or Southern California though :wink:

I’ve had the GE hybrid water heater for about 5 years. It’s hard to quantify how much energy savings I’ve gotten because our usage patterns have changed significantly in last few years (kids became teenagers and live in the shower). I’d like to think I’ve recouped my initial investment by now.

As far as noise, the compressor itself is pretty quiet. The noisy part is the fan noise. It has two “muffin” fans that move air over the evaporator coil. They can be pretty loud.

I installed it in the unfinished portion of my basement. It probably does lower the air temperature in that part of the basement by a degree or two. One nice thing is that it produces a lot of condensate - so it is like operating a dehumidifier for free!

I have an AO Smith hybrid and it is great! Another alternative and one i may go to next is the Viessmann solar DHW system.

Marathon makes a highly insulated fiberglass water heater that qualifies for tax credits. Better efficiency, no noise.