Plumbing Services

How a Hybrid Electric Water Heater Works

A hybrid electric water heater uses a heat pump to draw heat from the air and move it into the tank. When the demand for hot water is high, it switches to a more energy-efficient electric mode.Hybrid Electric Water Heater

These water heaters do not require any electrical upgrades for installation. They also do not require a water softener to maintain a warranty and can reduce your utility costs by up to 63%. Visit Website to learn more.

When purchasing a new water heater, it’s important to consider the initial cost and ongoing operating costs. While hybrid electric water heaters are more expensive than standard tank water heaters, they typically pay for themselves within the first two years and continue to save you money on your energy bills for their entire lifespan. They use thermal energy rather than electrical power to heat your water and are a good choice for homeowners who want to reduce their carbon footprint while saving on their utility bills.

RUUD hybrid electric water heaters are available in gas and electrical models and offer power venting or direct venting options. While power venting uses a fan to push exhaust air out of your home, direct venting brings combustion air from outside to the unit. These options add around $300 to $1,500 to the overall price of the water heater due to additional plumbing and wiring needs.

Most hybrid electric water heaters come with a warranty that covers the tank and parts for 10 years, which is significantly longer than standard tank warranties. However, it’s important to read the fine print and make sure you understand any additional charges that could be incurred in the event of a repair or replacement. For example, some hybrid units require a stainless steel chimney liner, which isn’t included in the standard installation.

In addition to the initial purchase and installation costs, hybrid water heaters require routine maintenance and annual inspections. The tanks should be flushed annually to remove sediment, and the anodes should be checked for corrosion. The water temperature should be checked regularly, as well. Many appliances rely on a certain water temperature for operation, and if it’s too low, proper sanitization may not occur and pose health risks.

Most hybrid water heaters have a useful selection of heating modes that can be changed from the control panel to meet your family’s demands throughout the day. Auto mode adjusts to the current demand, engaging both the heat pump and the electric element as needed. Electric mode utilizes the electric element only when there is high demand, which can be helpful for families that have multiple members taking showers at the same time or running multiple appliances. Sleep mode puts the water heater to sleep and lowers your energy costs when you’re away from home for extended periods.

Energy Efficiency

Unlike traditional electric water heaters that use an element to heat the water, hybrid electric water heaters use an air-to-water heat pump system. This system absorbs heat from the surrounding air and transfers it to your water using a series of refrigerant tubes. This process saves energy and reduces your home’s carbon footprint. A hybrid water heater also has a storage tank, just like traditional standard tank water heaters, but the way it uses energy is much different.

A fan at the top of the unit draws in ambient air that is carrying some heat into a small compartment. This heated air is then blown across the evaporator, which is a series of refrigerant-filled tubes. The evaporator then blows the cooler, drier air back into the room. As the air passes through the evaporator, it is warmed by the heat pump and then pushed through a converter that heats the water.

Hybrid electric water heaters only use electricity to power the internal components that “pump” warm air into the unit, which means they are significantly more energy efficient than traditional electric water heaters. The average household can save up to $200 to $600 per year on energy costs with a hybrid water heater. This amount of savings is comparable to other energy efficiency projects, including replacing a furnace or improving insulation in your house.

However, since these units use a combination of electricity and heat pump technology to work, they can be more expensive to install than gas models. This cost can be offset, however, by a number of available rebates and tax credits that can cover up to half the initial purchase price.

When installing a new hybrid electric water heater, it’s important to hire a professional plumber to handle the job. There are a number of steps involved in the installation that must be done exactly right to ensure the unit works properly and doesn’t leak or break. A professional will also have access to more parts and repair kits than you would find at a store.

When a hybrid electric water heater is in operation, you can test its temperature by taking a sample of the water and measuring it with a digital or manual thermometer. If the water temperature is not within a specified range, this could indicate that the device isn’t functioning correctly. You may need to replace the controller or contact a technician to fix the problem.

Exhaust Cool Air

A hybrid electric water heater uses a fan to pull air from the surrounding area into a heat pump. That heat is used to warm up the water in the tank. But during this process, the system also expels cooler air from the home. This cool air can cause discomfort, especially in living areas where the heater is located.

A way to minimize the issue is to install a damper in the system. This would change the direction of the exhaust so that it only pulls in air from outside and does not blow cooler outdoor air into living spaces. The damper can be added to a system that is already drawing air from outside, or it can be installed in a new installation.

Because hybrid water heaters draw thermal energy from the air around them, they are not as efficient in colder climates as standard gas water heaters. When the ambient temperature drops, the unit will switch to electricity mode, which is not as efficient and will drive up your energy costs.

When selecting a hybrid water heater for your home, make sure you select one that has a gallon capacity that is right for your family’s needs. A professional plumber can help you determine the gallon size that will best meet your energy efficiency goals and keep you from running out of hot water.

You should also make sure that the space where you plan to place your hybrid water heater is suitable. Remove any flammable items from the room where it will be installed and ensure that there is adequate ventilation. If you are considering installing a hybrid electric water heater in your furnace room, make sure the temperature in that room never drops below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lastly, if you currently have gas lines in your home, you will need to invest in a new electrical water heater to use with a hybrid electric water heater. Replacing these lines can be a significant cost. However, switching to a hybrid water heater will help you save money on your utility bills over time, so it is well worth the investment.

Error Codes

GE GeoSpring hybrid electric water heaters have a built-in diagnostic system, which displays the error codes and alerts the homeowner. These codes indicate the underlying problem, such as the need to clean the air filter or the need for repairs on the electrical components. In some cases, you may even need to replace the thermistor.

If the error code E55 appears on the display, this indicates that there is a leak somewhere in the unit. This could be the drain valve, Temperature & Pressure Relief (T&P) Valve or the heating elements. The first thing to do is to shut off the electric power supply and check the thermistor’s connection for any signs of damage. You can also detach the thermistor and check its resistance. Once you have done this, you can restart the unit and the error code should disappear.

A faulty heat pump compressor can also cause the water heater to throw the error code ECC. This can happen due to many reasons, such as insufficient air flow, closed air vents or leaks. This issue can be quite complicated and you should call a professional for repairs.

Another common error code is EPL, which indicates that there is not enough water in the tank. This can be caused by a leak in the water lines or a malfunctioning pressure switch. It can also be the result of a power supply voltage problem or a thermostat issue. In either case, you should turn off the electric power and make sure that the water supply valve is open.

Besides these errors, the GE GeoSpring water heater can also show other errors. For instance, if the red light flashes 3 times, it means that the upper thermistor sensor has failed. This can be a sign of a broken heating element or a faulty ET (electronic thermostat). To fix this, you will need to disconnect the electricity and remove the access panel cover to check the two power wires for any signs of damage. You can also use a non-contact circuit tester to determine the wiring connections. If you find any problems, you should contact a certified electrician for repair.