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What if a water heater is sold to be bigger than it actually is?

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  • Jun 29th, 2019 11:13 pm
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What if a water heater is sold to be bigger than it actually is?

Not a hypothetical question. I bought a water heater last year and it was sold (labelled on the box and on the manufacturer label) as 50 imperial gallons. I have found various references, including a few of the manufacturer's marketing data sheet, that the tank is actually 50 U.S. gallons and actually sold as 40 imperial gallons on one of the data sheets.

Any recourse short of taking legal action which I prefer not to over such a relatively small matter.
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thriftshopper wrote:
Jun 15th, 2019 8:11 pm
Not a hypothetical question. I bought a water heater last year and it was sold (labelled on the box and on the manufacturer label) as 50 imperial gallons. I have found various references, including a few of the manufacturer's marketing data sheet, that the tank is actually 50 U.S. gallons and actually sold as 40 imperial gallons on one of the data sheets.

Any recourse short of taking legal action which I prefer not to over such a relatively small matter.
You bought it LAST YEAR... if you bought it last week, maybe you’d have some recourse.

For that matter, what’s the price difference between a 40 gallon and 50 gallon tank? $50? That would be the limit to your compensation most likely.

C
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Didn't know about the size discrepancy until I saw the same tank at my wholesale plumbing supplier with the correct capacity on it.

The tank is mislabelled on the carton it was shipped in, and on the tank itself. Surely that is fraud or mislabelling, intentional or unintentional. It's taking to buying a car whose engine is sold and US EPA (or Canadian equivalent) labelled as displacing 3.0 l and you find out later actual displacement is only 2.4 l.

The size jumps from 50 U.S. gallons to 75 U.S. gallons. No sizes inbetween. Tank has a lifetime guarantee (just the elements and heating circuitry to change) to original purchaser so not as if it is going to replaced eventually. The price difference between the two tanks, at one of the few places that carries the larger tank and displays a price, is USD 261.
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I would start by calling the manufacturer to let them know of the discrepancy, and see how they respond.
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Nukey wrote:
Jun 15th, 2019 9:20 pm
I would start by calling the manufacturer to let them know of the discrepancy, and see how they respond.
Agreed. Done that. Just feel misled. And a large manufacturer should know better.
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thriftshopper wrote:
Jun 15th, 2019 8:11 pm
Not a hypothetical question. I bought a water heater last year and it was sold (labelled on the box and on the manufacturer label) as 50 imperial gallons. I have found various references, including a few of the manufacturer's marketing data sheet, that the tank is actually 50 U.S. gallons and actually sold as 40 imperial gallons on one of the data sheets.

Any recourse short of taking legal action which I prefer not to over such a relatively small matter.
A judge would ask how you have been harmed by being given a larger and more expensive tank than you paid for. If not, why do you deserve compensation?
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engineered wrote:
Jun 15th, 2019 11:46 pm
A judge would ask how you have been harmed by being given a larger and more expensive tank than you paid for. If not, why do you deserve compensation?
The tank is actually smaller than claimed: 50 U.S. gallons, not 50 imperial gallons as labelled on the box and tank. I got a smaller tank that what the label and box says I did.
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thriftshopper wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 12:13 am
The tank is actually smaller than claimed: 50 U.S. gallons, not 50 imperial gallons as labelled on the box and tank. I got a smaller tank that what the label and box says I did.
Ah, ok. I misread your question.
So what proof do you have now that it was mislabelled? Do you still have the box?
Like the others said, it's probably too late now.
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I have a picture of the box with label (shows model and serial number). The label on the tank states it it 50 imperial gallons. The manufacturer's own marketing documents for U.S. and Canada labels the tank as 50 U.S. gallon and 40 imperial gallons (it is actually a bit larger at 42 imperial gallons).

I don't see why it is too late if it was misrepresented. The whole point about branding is that the manufacturer is reputable and honest and what it sells as represented is what one essentially gets. How would one know otherwise if one takes the (hopefully-reliable) manufacturer's word, clearly printed on the packaging box AND on the tank's label (with model and serial numbers), that the tank is what it is? It'll be like Intel selling you a CPU rated at 3GHz while it actually runs at 2.1 GHz.
Last edited by thriftshopper on Jun 16th, 2019 12:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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thriftshopper wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 12:29 am
I have a picture of the box with label (shows model and serial number). And the label on the tank states it it 50 imperial gallons. Rheem's own marketing documents labels the tank as 50 U.S. gallon and 40 imperial gallons (it is actually a bit larger).

I don't see why it is too late if it was misrepresented. How would one know otherwise if one takes the (hopefully-reliable) manufacturer's word, clearly printed on the packaging box AND on the tank's label (with model and serial numbers), that the tank is what it is? It'll be like Intel selling you a CPU rated at 3GHz while it actually runs at 2.1 GHz
What's the price difference? Have you measured out the tank volume to be sure?
Otherwise I guess you'll have to let us know what they say.
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engineered wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 12:38 am
What's the price difference? Have you measured out the tank volume to be sure?
Otherwise I guess you'll have to let us know what they say.
There is no size in the particular product line that is 50 imperial gallons. The closest sizes to 50 imperial gallons is either 50 U.S. gallons or 75 U.S. gallons. The price difference from one retailer that sells both and lists price online is ~USD 261.

The tank size (height and diameter) matches the two manufacturer documents I have that state it is 50 U.S. gallons/"40 imperials gallons" (since it is ~42 imperial gallons). It'd have to be taller and/or wider to be the capacity as labelled, unless of course insulation (apparently 3" thick) is reduced.

I'll wait and see what I hear from them. BBB would be the next step if nothing is resolved.
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So shouldn't your title be "water heater is smaller than actually is"
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thriftshopper wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 12:58 am
There is no size in the particular product line that is 50 imperial gallons. The closest sizes to 50 imperial gallons is either 50 U.S. gallons or 75 U.S. gallons. The price difference from one retailer that sells both and lists price online is ~USD 261.

The tank size (height and diameter) matches the two manufacturer documents I have that state it is 50 U.S. gallons/"40 imperials gallons" (since it is ~42 imperial gallons). It'd have to be taller and/or wider to be the capacity as labelled, unless of course insulation (apparently 3" thick) is reduced.

I'll wait and see what I hear from them. BBB would be the next step if nothing is resolved.
What resolution are you expecting? Not sure what it matters what some online site sells a 50 and a 75 usg tank for, what does the place you bought it from sell them for? Did they charge you for a 75usg and give you the 50? If as you claim there is no 50 imperial gallon tank in the product line, then I don't know what compensation you think you are entitled to for a mistake on the packaging.
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tebore wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 7:52 am
So shouldn't your title be "water heater is smaller than actually is"
No, it's smaller than what is advertised, not smaller than what it actually is. What does "is smaller than actually is" even mean?
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djeffery wrote:
Jun 16th, 2019 12:50 pm
What resolution are you expecting? Not sure what it matters what some online site sells a 50 and a 75 usg tank for, what does the place you bought it from sell them for? Did they charge you for a 75usg and give you the 50? If as you claim there is no 50 imperial gallon tank in the product line, then I don't know what compensation you think you are entitled to for a mistake on the packaging.
Partial refund, or a device to boost hot water (mfg has come up with such a device).

Others have mentioned what the price difference between tanks were so I was providing an example of price-size differential.

The retailer where I bought the tank from does not sell the 75 US gallon tank (here or in its home country).

As I said, the label on the tank packaging carton and on the manufacturer's label on the tank say it is one capacity while it is actually another.

Again, my tank is (not was) labelled as being 50 imperials gallons in capacity (227l, 60 US gallons).
It, by the manufacturer's own data sheet(s), is actually 50 U.S. gallons (189l, 42 imperial gallons).

I'd have no problem if the tank is labelled as 50 US Gallons which is what it actually is.

Bottom Line: Shouldn't a reputable manufacturer sell something that is actually what it stated to be? (It's not like one was buying from some unknown, possibly shady supplier on ebay or ali express).

Imagine if your new Intel Core i9-9900K labelled as having 8 core and running 3.6 GHz actually only operated on 7 cores and/or 3.1 GHz (not defective but every single one runs that way). Or, your 1.14l (labelled as such by the distiller) bottle of Johnny Walker Blue (or whatever) was actually packaged in a 1.0l bottle, or your 240 Hz TV is actually only 60 Hz.
Last edited by thriftshopper on Jun 16th, 2019 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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