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old question: should I buy or rent my water heater?

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  • Jul 4th, 2012 4:52 pm
[OP]
Newbie
Nov 5, 2010
5 posts
Dundas

old question: should I buy or rent my water heater?

at this moment I am renting my water heater from Reliance, This heater was installed in 1997 so it is 15yrs old. It works great, looks like new. Reliance approved me for replacement already. My monthly payment is $13 (almost). I could buy this tank from them for $50, that is 3.5 month rent. Should I do that?
Or should I look into buying my own? I am not sure how long I will live here, but I love my house and am not planning to move soon. (but you never know)
Any advise? I did check some prices at HD but with extra warranty(9yrs) it comes to almost $1000. Is it worth it?
Thank you so much
18 replies
Deal Expert
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Mar 25, 2003
16845 posts
5314 upvotes
Markham
Old answer: buy buy buy
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Deal Addict
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Aug 5, 2003
2566 posts
479 upvotes
North York
We bought ours out for $26, the rental was $28/mo, it's still going without fault nearly 20 months later.

We have saved we are more then half of the cost to buy and install a new tank if this one happens to fail.
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Jan 2, 2012
4324 posts
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KINGSTON,ON
Don't be silly. Buy the damn thing. THEN NEVER, EVER RENT A WATER HEATER AGAIN!!!
That tank could last 5 more months or 5 more years. When it dies, buy a new one.
In fifteen years you have probably paid for that tank two times already.
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Nov 18, 2007
3530 posts
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Corktown
Before you pull the "buy" trigger, open up the drain valve and let a bucket of water run out. The debris (or lack thereof) in the bucket will let you know how if anything is suspect. You might see some slime, but you shouldn't see any rusty metal flakes or similar.

A relatively clean bucket of water is a good sign that the tank is in great condition and shouldn't fail a month after you buy it.
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Jan 2, 2012
4324 posts
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KINGSTON,ON
fastlayne wrote: Before you pull the "buy" trigger, open up the drain valve and let a bucket of water run out. The debris (or lack thereof) in the bucket will let you know how if anything is suspect. You might see some slime, but you shouldn't see any rusty metal flakes or similar.

A relatively clean bucket of water is a good sign that the tank is in great condition and shouldn't fail a month after you buy it.
Oh ya, and it such a huge expenditure, that $50 outlay.
Don't freak the dude out with this stuff. I quarantee there's gonna be a tonne of rusty crap pouring out. It's 15 years old and never been serviced; who cares if the tank is full of shite?.
The payback is stupid short here.
The real point is to stop paying Reliance a rental fee, and NEVER, EVER RENT A WATER HEATER AGAIN.
Deal Expert
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Dec 12, 2009
25475 posts
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Toronto
Remember this, rental companies are not charities. Over the life of a water heater, they make tons of money. So, buy, profit.
Jr. Member
Sep 5, 2005
193 posts
41 upvotes
Buy.....so glad I finally got rid of Direct Energy. My only regret is that I didn't kick them to the curb years ago! :o
Newbie
May 30, 2012
6 posts
1 upvote
Mississauga, Ontario
Hi Guys,

I just got a home and I believe my water heater was last serviced in 1999 (a long time ago!)

Most of this thread is recommending buying as the best option. I have a couple questions on that:
1. What's the return on investment? Will it take 5 years to be on par with renting for me to pay off this heater?
2. Where did you guy buy your heater from (Ebay?) or did you go with someone local? (Who would you recommend for the GTA and how much?)

Thanks guys :)
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7747 posts
2737 upvotes
ON
Buy it out and let it ride until it dies, which will likely be quite a few more years. Replace at that point.
You also have the option to remove it and have DE take it back. You then install your own brand new one.

ROI on a brand new power vent is 4 years at current rent. As rates surely rise, probably less.
Member
Jan 6, 2008
434 posts
48 upvotes
I rent. No worries. If I'm away and it leaks, I can tell my wife to call the number written on the heater. I have an electric so I could do the install myself but if it were gas, i wouldn't. Are you gas certified? How are you at pipe soldering? Will your family be on your back to "get it fixed quick"? Once you factor in your time, getting the darn thing home and disposing of the old, possibly hiring and waiting for tradespeople...how much do you save? is the time and trouble worth it to you? not to me.
Deal Fanatic
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Apr 29, 2008
7959 posts
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Montreal
Buy...

you will always need one, why would it be cheaper to rent it? Does not make much sense.
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Jan 2, 2012
4425 posts
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Toronto
Buy it out as others mentioned... but with one additional step.

Do a service appt to get a tech to come take a look at it. When i did this on my 15-yr old heater earlier this year, the heater was actually working fine but was just making a loud clunking noise everytime it turned on. I was with DE and they had no problems at all sending someone out the next day. The service guy spent a couple hours servicing it and replaced some of the old/worn out parts. Day after, i called and bought out my heater for $75.

Just be careful you already have the upgraded exhaust venting (I believe PVC white pipes, NOT the smaller ABS black ones). DO NOT call for a service guy if you still use the old venting, as they will give you a service ticket and demand you upgrade it for a couple hundred bucks. If you need to upgrade, you should wait until you install a new water heater and whoever does it can also do the exhasut upgrade at the same time.
Deal Addict
Sep 30, 2008
1277 posts
311 upvotes
BUY, as you buy (not rent) your dishwasher, washing machine, furnace, etc. For buying, you save 2 or 3 times than renting.
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May 29, 2005
3846 posts
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Hamilton
does anyone know how much per month direct energy charges to rent a water heater? our new house is with them & if they are more expensive than reliance energy...i will stay with reliance.

:|
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7747 posts
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ON
25 +HST for a standard power vent.
Deal Addict
Sep 30, 2008
1277 posts
311 upvotes
sonic wrote: does anyone know how much per month direct energy charges to rent a water heater? our new house is with them & if they are more expensive than reliance energy...i will stay with reliance.

:|
I paid $17 plus hst monthly to direcet energy for a 50 gallon tank earlier this year, until I bought the 10 yrs old tank from them for about $110. I would think that the rental depends on the size of tank, whether it has power vent, etc.
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May 29, 2005
3846 posts
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Hamilton
what is a power vent?

Do I HAVE to go with direct energy?.....will i be automaticly billed once i move in?

can i call my old supplyer (reliance) & sign with them? they are Alot cheaper...... :|
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7747 posts
2737 upvotes
ON
Talk to your builder/read your contract if it's resale.
You usually get sucked into one automatically with no way out but to buy.
Builders don't care, because rental companies pay them to have it this way.
For resale you need to scratch that clause out of the agreement if the sellers will agree to get rid of it for you.

Power vent is a style of tank.
Most new models are direct vent or power vent (pipes out the side wall vs a chimney out the top)
Power vent just means it has a fan/motor to help move the air/exhaust.

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