Category Archives: Home Finances

Renting Water Heaters | DirectEnergy | Big Ripoff

I have been researching about options for water heaters and the cost of owning versus renting and just wanted to share my conclusions. It seems renting a water heater is a really BIG rip-off. Regardless of whether you get the tankless or the tank kind, your rent from DirectEnergy works out to buying it after 3.5 years. On average they last 12 years for tank, 20 years for tankless. Therefore if you rent it, you could have bought it 3 or 4 times during the lifespan of the appliance.

Here are some numbers for a Tankless water heater:

  • Owning - About $2,800 with taxes to install Lowe’s Bosch tankless water heater. You have to pay for repairs which we can estimate at $2,000 over 20 years. therefore $4,800.
  • Renting - $40/month from DirectEnergy. Over 20 years the cost to you is $9,600. They pay for the repairs so the cost to you is $9,600.

You can see why they want you to rent. Because this is such a lucrative business, there are also these from other third-party pirate companies who come to door-to-door to try and rent you a water heater. Their pricing is an even bigger rip-off. The one advantage of renting is they will fix it if there are any problems. This sounds appealing but so will 100s of companies you can find in the YellowPages and the cost of all the maintenance over the lifespan of the heater will never work out to the thousands you spend on rent.

That is my two cents on water heaters.