Home & Garden

The Great Water Heater Rental Scam

  • Last Updated:
  • Jul 17th, 2018 5:38 pm
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
Hello All, need your advice please. I last year purchased a property. Last week, I see some small drips from the water tank, so I called enercare and they sent in the technician to fix the problem. Technician immediately advised to replace the tank since it is 15 year old. Apparently, the previous owner was the first owner and paid rental for 14+ years and I after I bought the property last year continued to pay the rental. I am not sure of the following, can some expert advise please?
1. If the contract was 15 years and if 15 years were already over, did I pay the rental for no reason. Is it possible for me to claim it back? I think I can't since its a rental (not like a mobile tab?, but I am not sure)
2. If I am paying the rental, shouldn't the technician try and fix the water tank versus indicating it needs a replacement. (I see the reason now since they can hook me into a new contract).
3. Given that my current buyout option is 100 based on enercare website (for a PV50 tank), while it has a little drip which will give in sooner or later, what best can I do in the current case? Can I just ask to fix the tank since I am still paying rental?
4. If my current tank is PV50 and if I intend to continue with same size, what other new tanks can I opt for in the current scenario? I believe, enercare will still charge me to take the tank away? Is it possible to go for tankless from say home depot with installation?

Any advise is greatly appreaciated.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 23, 2008
6507 posts
2235 upvotes
Toronto (Markham)
dealwiththedeal wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 10:22 am
Hello All, need your advice please. I last year purchased a property. Last week, I see some small drips from the water tank, so I called enercare and they sent in the technician to fix the problem. Technician immediately advised to replace the tank since it is 15 year old. Apparently, the previous owner was the first owner and paid rental for 14+ years and I after I bought the property last year continued to pay the rental. I am not sure of the following, can some expert advise please?
1. If the contract was 15 years and if 15 years were already over, did I pay the rental for no reason. Is it possible for me to claim it back? I think I can't since its a rental (not like a mobile tab?, but I am not sure)
2. If I am paying the rental, shouldn't the technician try and fix the water tank versus indicating it needs a replacement. (I see the reason now since they can hook me into a new contract).
3. Given that my current buyout option is 100 based on enercare website (for a PV50 tank), while it has a little drip which will give in sooner or later, what best can I do in the current case? Can I just ask to fix the tank since I am still paying rental?
4. If my current tank is PV50 and if I intend to continue with same size, what other new tanks can I opt for in the current scenario? I believe, enercare will still charge me to take the tank away? Is it possible to go for tankless from say home depot with installation?

Any advise is greatly appreaciated.
Terminate contract, buy your own.
Tis banana is IRIE :razz:

10% off is cold, 50% off is warm, 75% off is hot, but FREE IS RFD!
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
chimaican wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 10:30 am
Terminate contract, buy your own.
Thanks for a quick reply. So, if I buy my own, do I just go to stores like home depot/ rona and pay for the installation? Any recommendation for PV50 size water heater? Given that my previous owner rented it before 2010, enercare can pick it themselves from the curbside for free (or 75$). If not, does the store like home depot will take the existing tank away.

Also, is tankless a better option and will that involve substantially more installation costs?

Thanks for your inputs.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 23, 2008
6507 posts
2235 upvotes
Toronto (Markham)
Home Depot won't take the tank away and neither will the contractors unless you own it. As of right now it is still the property of Enercare.

Tank vs. Tankless will all depend on your water usage imo. Because the cost of the tankless is so much greater than a traditional tank, it would all depend on how much and how often you are using hot water.
Tis banana is IRIE :razz:

10% off is cold, 50% off is warm, 75% off is hot, but FREE IS RFD!
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
chimaican wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 11:13 am
Home Depot won't take the tank away and neither will the contractors unless you own it. As of right now it is still the property of Enercare.

Tank vs. Tankless will all depend on your water usage imo. Because the cost of the tankless is so much greater than a traditional tank, it would all depend on how much and how often you are using hot water.
Thanks! So, does the below sound good.
1. After getting different quotes, get home depot (or the best option) install the tank,
2. Request enercare to pick it from curbside? (for a fee I presume)

Sorry, am not familiar having only bought the house first time recently but need to sort this out ASAP since the tank is dripping a bit and if not done soon there will be a puddle of water in my unfinished basement.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 23, 2008
6507 posts
2235 upvotes
Toronto (Markham)
Another thing you need to look into is whether you have ABS or PVC piping. Not sure what province you're in but you may also have to tack on the cost of replacing the piping as well.
Tis banana is IRIE :razz:

10% off is cold, 50% off is warm, 75% off is hot, but FREE IS RFD!
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
chimaican wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 11:26 am
Another thing you need to look into is whether you have ABS or PVC piping. Not sure what province you're in but you may also have to tack on the cost of replacing the piping as well.
Okay, will have to check that at home later in the evening. Am in ontario and I have a PV50 currently installed.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7747 posts
2633 upvotes
ON
If the vent piping is black, you'll need new.
If it's white you're fine.

Pay the $100 or pick up fee and run away while you can. Be glad you got out so cheap and not in year 2 of a new tank contract.
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
aqnd wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 12:33 pm
If the vent piping is black, you'll need new.
If it's white you're fine.

Pay the $100 or pick up fee and run away while you can. Be glad you got out so cheap and not in year 2 of a new tank contract.
Thanks! Last week a technician came for leak fix and he only advised a replacement tank to my family. My family told him, we will choose to call in to request for replacement later (nothing signed).
I just called enercare to ask for pickup fee and details about the existing contract signed by previous owner and they said last week they have a new replacement rental but they have no record of my previous rental water heater. (My sellers agreement indicates water heater rental) and I have been paying 26$ as my rental until now. I asked the leak in the tank is not fixed. They indicate they don't have any record for prior water heater on their file (and they have on record that a new tank replacement on 28th july and no record prior to that) and if I need the leak fixed it will charge me.
I said if there is no record, was I incorrectly charged for a year and they say their system is down and someone will call me within 24 hours from water heater dept. The calls are excruciatingly long and am being kept on hold every now and then. I am getting anxious now suspecting a deliberate tactics given that the current tank is leaking.

Any advise please. It is pretty urgent, I can wait for their call for a day but I suspect this is getting complex.
Deal Addict
Oct 13, 2014
1319 posts
655 upvotes
Somewhere, ON
This is direct from the rental agreement prior to Sept., 2010:

At the end of the useful life (as stated by the technician to you)
††
of your present water heater, you are not obligated to rent and we are not
obligated to supply replacement equipment, unless we mutually agree at the time.

AND if the WH is within its useful life (less than 15 years old):

If you choose to have Direct Energy disconnect, remove or retrieve the rental water heater, in most cases there
will be a $75.00 charge for these services. (There is no
charge if you are more than 32km (20 miles) from a
Direct Energy return location or if we fail to retrieve your water heater within two weeks of your request or your
water heater has been rented for 15 years or more.)

It would appear your WH is not longer your responsibility or cost.
“Before one can have a Clue they must first accumulate 10 Inklings. That said, all it takes is one bad post and you erase all Clues accumulated'"
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
rcmpvet wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 3:38 pm
This is direct from the rental agreement prior to Sept., 2010:

At the end of the useful life (as stated by the technician to you)
††
of your present water heater, you are not obligated to rent and we are not
obligated to supply replacement equipment, unless we mutually agree at the time.

AND if the WH is within its useful life (less than 15 years old):

If you choose to have Direct Energy disconnect, remove or retrieve the rental water heater, in most cases there
will be a $75.00 charge for these services. (There is no
charge if you are more than 32km (20 miles) from a
Direct Energy return location or if we fail to retrieve your water heater within two weeks of your request or your
water heater has been rented for 15 years or more.)

It would appear your WH is not longer your responsibility or cost.
Thank you so much. So, given that it is end of life, enercare will take it away. (likely 75$ fee) and I am free to get a new one from a store like home depot, right?
Deal Addict
Oct 13, 2014
1319 posts
655 upvotes
Somewhere, ON
dealwiththedeal wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 3:53 pm
Thank you so much. So, given that it is end of life, enercare will take it away. (likely 75$ fee) and I am free to get a new one from a store like home depot, right?
There should be no fee if at the end of the useful life. FYI here is a link to the contract (pre-2010), you really should have it in front of you when you call Enercare:

https://www.enercare.ca/sites/default/f ... itions.pdf
“Before one can have a Clue they must first accumulate 10 Inklings. That said, all it takes is one bad post and you erase all Clues accumulated'"
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
44 posts
5 upvotes
rcmpvet wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 7:34 am
There should be no fee if at the end of the useful life. FYI here is a link to the contract (pre-2010), you really should have it in front of you when you call Enercare:

https://www.enercare.ca/sites/default/f ... itions.pdf
Thanks! Yes, I spoke to a different number for cancellations in enercare which was more cooperative and indicated once my new tank installation is done I can call and request to have it removed from my basement at no cost and will be removed from within a week. They did offer me first 3 months rental free and then 6 months rental free and then 1 year of plumbing etc service. I politely declined and all seems ok as of now. Now, I go back to looking for new tank, most likely home depot (rheem) or bradford white whichever effective cost is lower.

Thanks guys for the inputs provided, really helped making a decision and this thread has been very helpful.
Member
Jul 22, 2015
370 posts
65 upvotes
Ontario
I've often wondered why water heaters are so frequently rented. Soon, you will see more furnace/AC rentals too and new home buyers will need to assume those contracts!

I've purchased a new build and of coarse, it comes with a rented water heater from Reliance. I'm not sure what the buyout amount will be at this point as I haven't moved in yet, but I've heard that I can just get them to remove it before I get my first bill and I can just install a new one from another company. Anyone heard this before or had any success with it?

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