Whether you’re buying a new furnace or water heater for your home or business or you simply want to know more about the equipment you already own, this is your one-stop source for everything you need to know about Rheem® comfort solutions.
Should you have a problem with your system, Rheem has developed the following guidelines to assure that your problem receives proper attention.
To better assist your independent HVAC contractor, please furnish the model and serial numbers on each piece of your equipment and the date of installation. First, determine the type of equipment from the two categories shown below. The photos and diagrams will help you locate the model and serial numbers of your equipment, if they are not found on your original warranty or sales invoice.
Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Used to express the efficiency of gas furnaces. The higher the AFUE rating, the more efficient the unit. Federal law has required that all new residential furnaces built after January 1992 operate with an AFUE of 78% or higher. All Rheem® furnaces are manufactured to exceed these requirements with a minimum AFUE of 80%. If your furnace was built before 1992, chances are it is operating with an average efficiency of around 60%. Most of the heat is lost up the chimney or out the exhaust vent – devices used by older furnaces to expel dangerous fumes created by the furnace, such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, aldehydes, and even soot. Modern furnaces use more technologically advanced venting techniques to achieve greater energy efficiency. An important note: Be sure to ask your installing contractor if your chimney or exhaust vent is suitable for use with your new equipment.
The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) is the trade association representing manufacturers of air conditioning, heating and commercial refrigeration equipment. AHRI’s 300+ member companies account for more than 90 percent of the residential and commercial air conditioning, space heating, water heating, and commercial refrigeration equipment manufactured and sold in North America. Rheem is an active member of AHRI.
Short for British Thermal Unit. The amount of heat required to raise or lower the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.
The heat transfer rate of HVAC equipment is measured in British Thermal Units per Hour.
Usually measured in BTUs or tons, capacity refers to an air conditioning or heating unit’s ability to cool or heat a space. For instance, a 20-ton air conditioning unit has twice the capacity of a 10-ton unit.
A unit to express movement of volume, including air, in Cubic Feet per Minute. A 400 CFM air handler moves 400 cubic feet in one minute.
The compressor plays an integral role in cooling your home. It is the device responsible for pumping refrigerant through the refrigerant lines and the coil, making the transfer of heat from inside your house to the outdoors possible. Rheem uses high-quality compressors throughout its residential air conditioning and heat pump line for quiet, efficient, and trouble-free operation for many years to come.
The coil responsible for dissipating heat to the surrounding, outside air. Also called the condenser coil, or outdoor coil, its role is reversed when a heat pump is used in heating mode.
The brain behind the most advanced furnace technology available today. Used in the Rheem Classic 90 Plus Modulating Gas Furnaces with Contour Comfort Control™, this breakthrough technology can keep temperatures throughout your house constant—as constant as one-half of one degree of your thermostat setting. Conventional furnaces turn on and off when temperatures fall or climb to a pre-determined level, delivering warm air (usually much warmer that the air in the house), until the desired temperature is achieved, then turning off. The Rheem Classic 90 Plus Modulating Gas Furnace is different. The fan speed and heat output are automatically and constantly varied. The result is that air flows from the registers at the precise temperature you select, for lower utility bills and greater comfort. You can also use up to six optional remote sensors (mounted in closets or other strategic locations) to help the Contour Comfort Control™ system analyze temperatures throughout your home. The system then uses this information to direct furnace activity accordingly, effectively eliminating hotspots.
The Coefficient of Performance rates a heat pump’s ability to efficiently use electricity in its operation. The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute provides the Coefficient of Performance at 47 degrees Fahrenheit and 17 degrees Fahrenheit.
This is because a heat pump is more efficient at higher, outside-air temperatures.
The relative loudness of a sound is expressed in dB, short for decibel. As an example, the sound of a human voice talking is around 70 dB. (See also SRN.)
A federal agency, the Department of Energy, sets the standards for efficiency throughout the HVAC industry and monitors consumption of energy sources.
A term used to describe the direction of airflow through a furnace. A downflow furnace takes return air from the top, heats it, and then delivers the warm air from the bottom.
A central heating and air conditioning system uses many components to heat or cool air. This warm or cool air is then transferred to different registers throughout the house via special, flexible, large-diameter pipes or ducts. The system of ducts throughout your house is often referred to as ductwork or ducting.
Energy Efficiency Ratio. The ratio of the cooling capacity of the air conditioner in BTUs per hour to the total electrical input in watts. This measure is determined by comparing test units to the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute specifications.
A general term used to describe how effectively a heat pump, air conditioning system, or furnace converts incoming energy to outgoing energy. The higher the number, the more efficient the unit, and the lower the operating costs.
An integral part of the indoor unit of a heat pump or air conditioning system. So called because when warm air passes over a coil filled with liquid refrigerant, the refrigerant itself evaporates and absorbs some of the heat. This gas refrigerant is then pumped to the outdoor coil, where it releases heat into the surrounding air and returns to its liquid state.
Responsible for transferring heat from furnace burners to the blower. Rheem uses some of the finest heat exchangers in the industry with limited lifetime warranties on some models.
A term used to describe the direction of airflow through a furnace. A horizontal flow furnace takes return air from one side, heats it, and then delivers the warm air from the other side.
Heating Seasonal Performance Factor. It measures the efficiency of the heating portion of your heat pump. The Department of Energy minimum is 6.8. (Similar to SEER.)
Usually available as an optional accessory, a humidifier is used to inject water vapor into the dry, heated air expelled from a furnace/air handler. The benefits can be improved efficiency and a more comfortable living environment.
Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning. Used to refer to the industry at large, particularly dealers of heating and air conditioning equipment.
Split-system home comfort systems use two main components to deliver air for a comfortable living environment. The indoor coil is the device responsible for transferring heat from indoors to the outdoors (or the reverse in the case of a heat pump in heating mode). Most modern systems are designed to achieve maximum efficiency when the indoor unit (coils and blower) is properly matched with the outdoor unit (air conditioner or heat pump). For best results, be sure to replace both the indoor and outdoor units at the same time.
A unit used to express 1,000 Watts. Denoted as “kW.” Note that the “W” in “kW” is always capitalized because the Watt unit was named after a person.
If a unit uses 1,000 Watts in 1 hour, it is said to have an energy rating of 1kWh.
Furnaces are designed to deliver maximum heat for comfort on the coldest of days. In most cases, those days account for fewer than three percent of winter days. The rest of the time, your furnace is providing more heat than necessary. Because conventional furnaces are either providing no heat, or at full capacity, the temperature in your house goes up and down by several degrees, adversely affecting your comfort and your energy bills. Modulating furnaces solve this problem by varying the amount and temperature of air delivered between different capacities, so that the air flowing out of the registers is always at the temperature you determine. This results in lower operating costs, more comfortable temperatures throughout the house and quieter operation.
Equipment in which all heating and cooling components are located in one cabinet. Installed either beside or on top of a home or business.
The liquid used to absorb and transfer heat from one part of the home comfort system to another.
Copper lines used to transfer the refrigerant between the outdoor unit and the indoor unit.
Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. Used to express the efficiency of an air conditioning unit, or a heat pump in cooling mode. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the unit. The Department of Energy minimum is 13 SEER.
A home comfort system that uses an indoor and an outdoor component to deliver comfortable air to a living environment.
The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute performs tests and assigns a Sound Rating Number (SRN) to units. A lower SRN rating indicates a quieter unit with average SRNs of between 74dB and 80dB.
A temperature-measuring device used to control the operation of home comfort systems to maintain a comfortable temperature within the house. Programmable thermostats allow you to program different temperatures for different times of the day.
The ton ratings you see here have nothing to do with the weight of the unit. In fact a ton is simply 12,000 BTUs (see BTU definition on this page). A typical home cooling/heating system uses heat pumps or air conditioners with a capacity of between 1.5 and 5 tons.
A term used to describe the direction of airflow through a furnace. An upflow furnace takes return air from the bottom, heats it, and then delivers the warm air from the top.
Electrical power, also expressed as ‘W’. For example, a 100W globe consumes 100 Watts of electrical power. The W in Watt is always uppercased, because it is named after a person.
A home may be divided into several different areas, or zones, to better control the temperatures throughout the house. The process of dividing your home into different zones is called zoning.
Learn more about Rheem tankless water heaters.
Our indoor and outdoor tankless models save ample space because of their simple design and compact size. And because there is no storage tank associated with our tankless technology, you’ll never have to wait for water to pre-heat before enjoying hot water upon your arrival. With an installed Rheem tankless system, you’ll love the comfort of extended hot showers or long soothing hot baths at your leisure. Rheem’s advanced tankless water heaters only use energy when there is a demand for hot water—so when you are away, there are no hot water bills to pay. If your vacation home is in a high-altitude region, Rheem tankless water heaters offer unique technologies for efficient operation up to and above 9,000 feet. If you are interested in investing in a cost-saving, energy-efficient hot water solution for your vacation home, please contact us today.
When you turn on your hot water, a tankless water heater turns on and begins heating water as it flows through the unit. It continues to provide hot water until the demand is over, then goes on standby until the next hot water need. There is no storage capacity limit, so you receive continuous hot water.
When you turn on your hot water, a tank-type water heater begins to drain the hot water stored in the tank. In times of heavy hot water usage, less hot water will be available until after a period of “reheating” time. It continues to heat and reheat water, even when there is no need for hot water.
What Energy Efficiency Rating Factors Have Changed? The new UEF standard affects more than just the efficiency number itself. Adjustments in new DOE testing procedures now impact water heating performance stats associated with the amount of hot water produced in a real-world situation to the length of typical showers. Examples of Performance Factors Impacted by UEF include:
|Description||Month Manufactured||Year Manufactured||Plant Line Code||Consecutive Serial Number|
Your warranty is based on the date of manufacture and the warranty code listed in the model number. To verify if your water heater is in warranty you can call 1-800-621-5622 and listen for the prompt to take you to
Because water heater tanks are typically made of steel, they are (or should be) equipped with an anode rod that attracts the minerals in water so they attack the sacrificial rod instead of the tank.
A type of gas water heater that uses no fans or other assistance to vent flue gases.
As the water inside a standard tank-type water heater is used, the temperature of the hot water that comes out becomes lower. A booster is a type of tankless water heater that measures the water exiting the tank water heater and heats it.
Short for British Thermal Unit. The amount of heat required to raise or lower the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.
The heat transfer rate of water heating equipment is measured in British Thermal Units per Hour.
The capacity of a water heater is how much hot water it can store. New rules mandate that two numbers are quoted for capacity: the nominal capacity (typically 30 gal., 40 gal., 50 gal. etc.) and the rated capacity, which is the actual amount of water a water heater can hold (typically 2-5 gallons lower than the nominal capacity).
The dip tube is on the cold water line of a water heater to direct the cold water to the bottom of the tank both so it can force the hot water out and so it can be heated.
A direct vent water heater gets its combustion air from the outside, rather than the room the water heater is installed in.
Short for Energy Factor, this is a measure of how efficiently a water heater uses its energy input. The higher the number, the more efficient the unit is. EF has been replaced by Uniform Energy Factor.
Installed on the water inlet line, an expansion tank regulates the pressure in water lines.
All residential water heaters manufactured after 2003 are required to be Flammable Vapor Ignition-Resistant, that is they must not ignite flammable vapors outside the combustion chamber.
A hybrid water heater uses heat pump technology to draw heat from the air and transfers it to the water to make it hot. This type of water heater is highly efficient.
As fossil fuels are burned, oxides of nitrogen are often formed. Because these combustion by-products impact air quality, EPA regulations control the acceptable amount of NOx output of most water heaters.
These electric water heaters are compact enough to be installed at or near the place they will be used. They heat water only when it is needed and return to standby when hot water is no longer need. Depending upon the capacity (or flow rate in the case of tankless), point of use water heaters can supply hot water to a sink, an entire bathroom, an addition, a workshop, garage, etc.
Standby losses measure the temperature loss in a hot water tank over a 24- hour period and are report as an energy loss in BTU/h units.
An important safety measure, the temperature and pressure (T&P) valve opens when the temperature or pressure inside the water heater exceeds its designed limits.
In 2017, EF ratings were replaced with the Uniform Energy Factor (UEF), a new industry standard for measuring energy efficiency in water heaters. The new UEF rating method defines consistent standards for measuring energy efficiency performance,
simplifies the water heater selection process and more accurately reflects real-world scenarios that impact energy efficiency ratings.
Electrical power, also expressed as ‘W’. For example, a 100W bulb consumes 100 Watts of electrical power. The W in Watt is always uppercased, because it is named after a person.