Rinnai RUR98i

Rinnai RUR98i Tankless Water Heater Review

Read time: 6 minutes Last Updated: 09/18/2019

The Rinnai RUR98i stands out as one of the most useful models on the market today when it comes to serving the needs of average homeowners. If you’ve ever considered using a tankless water heater in your home, then take some time to read about this well-regarded model’s productive specifications and features.

Rinnai RUR98i

Rinnai RUR98i

7.9/10
  • Powerful 9.8 GPM maximum flow rate
  • Built-in circulation pump eliminates need to install separate component
  • EnergyStar certification backs up 92% energy efficiency rating
  • Designed to allow for concentric and PVC venting
  • Very expensive
  • Takes up a great deal of physical space
Dimensions & Capacity:
12.5 x 10 x 26 inches
Fuel Type:
Natural Gas
Flow Rate & Water Pressure:
9.8 GPM (max)
Heating Capacity:
98° - 120° F
Energy Efficiency Ratings & Certifications:
92%
Price and Warranty:
Under $2,000, 12-year warranty on heat exchanger, 5-year on parts, 1-year on labor
Display Type:
Wireless (remote control)
Material Composition:
Copper

Our Review

Though few other models can claim such a component, the Rinnai RUR98i comes standard with a built-in condenser connected to its heat exchanging chambers. When in operation, this mechanism allows the unit to seamlessly recollect water lost to condensation during the heating process and retransmit it through the system. As a result, the Rinnai RUR98i is a master when it comes to providing homeowners with a hot water supply that doesn’t waste a single drop. This unit’s recirculation capabilities can be accessed with or without a dedicated recirculation line, making it easy to save water and maintain a limitless hot water supply all at once.

Also, those looking to upgrade their existing natural gas-powered tankless water heater will be pleased to see that this unit includes concentric and PVC venting options out of the box. As such, homeowners with an existing natural gas distribution system will be able to safely and affordably install this unit and take full advantage of its 92% energy efficiency rating.

Why Might I Want this Specific Tankless Water Heater?

When you get home from work, there’s one thing you definitely want without delay: a warm, soothing shower. But with a traditional tank water heater, you might well be met with a sub-par hot water production cycle that leaves you in the cold (literally). Luckily, there is a better and more modern method to supply your home with hot water – a tankless water heater.

These innovative appliances have taken the best part of in-home hot water – that is, sanitary and soothing water on demand – and enhanced it to the next level. At the same time, these modular appliances cost only a fraction of the price of their tanked competition, allowing even a novice DIYer to install one without breaking the bank.

Out of many reasons, many current users recommend the Rinnai RUR98i based upon its integration of innovative technologies into an otherwise productive tankless water heating unit. For example, this unit’s recirculation capabilities can be accessed with or without a dedicated recirculation line, making it easy to save water and maintain a limitless hot water supply all at once.

Individuals looking to upgrade their existing natural gas-powered tankless water heater will be pleased to see that this unit includes concentric and PVC venting options. As such, homeowners with an existing natural gas distribution system will be able to safely and affordably install this unit and take full advantage of its 92% energy efficiency rating.

Key Specifications and Features to Look for in a Tankless Water Heater

Dimensions

Though it is slightly less important than during a tank water heater installation, you’ll still need to factor in physical dimensions while installing a tankless water heater. The Rinnai RUR98i, for example, includes dimensions at 12.5 x 10 x 26 inches, which is bulky enough to need a devoted wall spot or cabinet to allow for safe and efficient use and maintenance down the road.

Fuel Type

Most tankless units are optimized to run on either electricity, propane, or natural gas. While no single fuel source is the “best,” each carries its own merits when it comes to regional availability and price. The Rinnai RUR98i is a natural gas-powered unit, making it among the most affordable units for large homes in areas where natural gas is abundant and piped into residential properties.

Flow Rate & Water Pressure

A tankless unit’s flow rate describes how much water it can pass through its system in a succinct period of time. Usually, this is measured in gallons per minute (GPM) and can have an effect on a delivery system’s water pressure if it dips too much. The Rinnai RUR98i features a 9.8 GPM max, which is more than enough to keep every attached faucet and shower pumping out hot water at a rapid clip.

Heating Capacity

A tankless unit’s primary job is to heat water, so it only makes sense that the heating capacity would be the range of temperatures to which it can heat water. For example, the Rinnai RUR98i can heat water to a range between 98° and 120° F. This compressed range is ideal for sanitary use as it will maximize the soothing feeling of a hot shower without burning the user.

Energy Efficiency Ratings

As with lightbulbs, you’ll want an energy-efficient tankless unit. You’ll be able to determine which models are the most energy-efficient based upon a specialized rating in each listing, often expressed as a percentage out of 100. The Rinnai RUR98i carries a 92% in this category, indicating that it converts over 9/10ths of its energy into the primary heating process.

 Price and Warranty

Those looking for a tankless unit on a budget will certainly need to compare prices. While accounting for particularly high prices (such as the Rinnai RUR98i’s price tag just under $2,000), be sure to consider added-value factors such as an extended warranty. Such a warranty can save you a substantial sum down the road, should a key component fail unexpectedly.

Display Type

Most tankless units include either a digital or analog display in order to simplify the process of adjusting the unit’s output temperature. However, the Rinnai RUR98i takes this concept a step further by integrating a fully wireless interface. Those looking to adjust the Rinnai RUR98i are able to do so from a wireless remote that comes bundled in with every unit.

Different Uses for a Tankless Water Heater

Decentralized In-Home Water Heating

Tankless water heaters are, by far, the best option for folks who are looking to break free of the tethers that come with a single tank water heater unit. More specifically, those who install several tankless units around their home will find themselves better able to maintain and make use of their home’s hot water production capabilities without ever worrying about running the primary source dry. This decentralized approach also adds efficiency to delivery given that a tankless unit is usually located mere feet from its intended outlet point.

Cutting Water and Electric Bills

Tankless water heaters are an excellent home improvement project for those looking to shave down their monthly utility bills. That is because tankless units like the Rinnai RUR98i minimize their resource utilization by their very nature. The Rinnai RUR98i’s 92% energy efficiency rating speaks to this, as does its integration of a proprietary circulation system to further cut down on water waste.

Don’t see what you’re looking for, or still have questions left unanswered?