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Hybrid water heater

Cate
Cate Member Posts: 3
We just built a semi custom home and a hybrid water heater was put in. We are a family of five and I am having issues with there being enough warm/hot water throughout the busy times of usage. We are only able to have one shower at a time before the warm/hot water is gone. Any tips/advice on what I can do? I tired switching it over to “electric” mode but it switches itself back after a little while. I’ve looked through the manual and there wasn’t any information that I found useful for this situation. 

Comments

  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,076
    What make, model is the water heater? How was the sizing of it determined?
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • Cate
    Cate Member Posts: 3
    state premier hybrid electric
    model #: HPX-50-DHPTNE 130

    Since it wasn’t a full custom build we didn’t get to determine how they chose this item. I can only imagine since it passed an inspection that it is supposed to be the correct size for the size of this home... but I have no knowledge in this area so that is a guess. 
  • Jon_blaney
    Jon_blaney Member Posts: 293
    Set the tank temp to 140 and then mix down for use.
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,076
    Cate said:

    state premier hybrid electric
    model #: HPX-50-DHPTNE 130

    Since it wasn’t a full custom build we didn’t get to determine how they chose this item. I can only imagine since it passed an inspection that it is supposed to be the correct size for the size of this home... but I have no knowledge in this area so that is a guess. 

    Inspectors don't determine the sizing of equipment since that requires proper calculations. They just determine that it's installed per code. It's probably under-sized for your needs.

    As, mentioned, you can crank the water temp setting up to 140* and add a tempering valve set at 125* to prevent scalding, but that's only gonna give you about 15% more stored heat capacity.

    You could add a second 50 gal electric tank that the present one would load into.

    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 20,455
    That's a 50 gallon capacity heater. And it is simply not big enough for 5 people. Further, it is electric resistance for anything like rapid recovery -- and that doesn't help.

    You need a bigger, probably straight electric, water heater -- although there are bigger hybrid ones, if you don't mind the budget...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    mattmia2
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 7,171
    A 50 gallon electric is like 1 bath with 2 maybe 3 people. If your winter incoming water temp is lower, like 32-45 degrees or so, it probably won't make enough hot water for back to back showers even in that situation. it really is the starting size for electric water heaters.
  • Cate
    Cate Member Posts: 3
    Thank you everyone! I will take these options and talk to our plumber. 
  • psb75
    psb75 Member Posts: 636
    You'll have to allow time between showers for it to recover. The 65 gal. version of the heat-pump would have been better. 80 gal. model would probably be perfect. Remember these are "slow and efficient." With the 50 gal. you'll have to adjust your usage to match its ability to heat water. Low flow shower heads would be good.
    Cate
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,091
    Do you have other fuel options? Gas fired tankless or Gas fired tank?
    What do you have for a heating system?
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,782
    edited January 2021
    Hi @Cate , To add to what others have said, your tank is way too small. Consider adding a second tank in series. Make it a 50 gallon electric, downstream of your present tank. You might want to look into Marathon heaters as they have very good insulation. Then try setting your heat pump unit to heat pump only and see how that works for you. I'll add that a quick, partial fix is to use 1.5 gpm showerheads or lower to extend the hot water you do have. If you have access to the drain from an upstairs shower, than adding a shower heat exchanger will essentially double the shower time you get per gallon of hot water as it's recycling those BTUs.

    Yours, Larry

    ps, Do you have a recirculation line for hot water? Does it have a good check valve in it? This could create a cross connection which would mess with hot water delivery.
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 13,127
    @Cate
    It is usually considered that 80% of the water heater capacity is hot water. That is because as you start to draw hot water cold water enters cooling some water in the tank. so a 50 gallon x .8=40 gallons of hot water.

    That being said you shouldn't run out of water with 1 shower
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 4,187
    edited February 2021
    As a small piece of anecdotal data, I chose the 65 gallon version of the Rheem for my house. Just my wife and I in a 3-4 bedroom 1200sqft home with 1.5 bathrooms. It's done real well for us but if we had 3 teenagers I'd be in a world of hurt.
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG