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Power Vented Water Heater

Dale Member Posts: 1,317
The main reason power vents are used in new homes is total cost to the track home builder. It costs less to install a power vent than a standard in a new home because of the framing and roof penetration costs and the small loss of space and floor plan options if a through the roof B Vent is installed. Go to the home center and price out 4 inch B vent compared to 3 inch PVC. Spec track homes for first time buyers always come down to the lowest possible cost.


  • saul deutsch
    saul deutsch Member Posts: 15
    Power Vented Water Heater

    I'd like to know what are the advantages & disadvantages of installing a Power Vented Water Heater versus a standard WH. How does this work & what are the reasons to choose this unit. Are there any benefits i.e. energy efficiency or other benefits associated with this PVWH?
    Do people install it in residential houses or is it geared for commercial? How much more should I expect to pay for a 60,000 BTU - 50 gallon unit and installation versus a standard comparable WH?
  • Mitch_4
    Mitch_4 Member Posts: 955

    No real advantage other than through the wall.

    More to break, more $ to fix, loud If you have a chimney, stick to it.

  • Heatermon
    Heatermon Member Posts: 119

    These units are primarily used where a "traditional" water heater won't work. Usually it's the venting that is the problem. If you can't vent naturally up and out, then these units enable you to vent horizontally, use piping that is plastic and a smaller diameter. They are used in both residential and commercial applications and the only drawbacks that I see are the higher prices for these units along with the increased likelyhood for service because they have more components than the traditional water heaters. The last power vent unit I put in was to replace a gas water heater in the middle of a basement that was vented straight up and out, but the homeowner added a second story to the house and didn't allow for the vent to remain. The only way we could vent out was horizontaly through the back of the basement and a natural draft unit wouldn't work because of the distance and the pitch. I also see alot of these units put in to replace electric water heaters that have no venting to begin with, so the cost savings of being able to vent with plastic can offset the cost of installing an atmospheric vent system. These units have their place and reason to be used, hopefully it's a good fit in your situation. The price difference question is best left to the contractor who is doing the actual install because "It depends" is the only accurate answer you are going to get at this forum. Good luck with your project, you may also want to look into the tankless options available if at all possible.


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  • jeff_51
    jeff_51 Member Posts: 545
    we install alot of them

    particularly in new house where we are not putting in a flue cause the heating plant is direct vent. In our market it is about 21/2 times more to put in a power vented unit than to replace an existing natural draft unit, The water heater is of course more money and then the new vent must be run. We would install a standard 6yr natural gas natural draft 50 gallon for around 850.00 and a power vent for around 1800.00 Differant markets of course will charge differant rates, but that should give you an idea of the cost diff between and natual draft and power vented unit. If you want to go this rout, I would suggest going to an instantanious water heater instead.
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