Fogatti RV Tankless Water Heater Review

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Review of the Fogatti RV Tankless Water Heater


Hi there RV and trailer owners. Today we're going to be taking a look at a tankless water heater. The door is available in either white or black. We're going to be showing off the white today because it matches our trailer a little bit better. In most cases this unit is going to be a direct replacement for an existing tanked water heater that you have, except this one's going to be tankless. It fits in your same slot, you have the same exhaust outlet and overall it looks fairly similar except for there's no tank inside.

And the benefit of not having a tank is that this heater is designed to heat the water as it flows through it, which means unlike a tank heater after you've used up the hot water in the tank, the temperature starts to diminish. Whereas this guy here is just going to maintain whatever you have the temperature set until you just run out of water. It's going to heat it to that point, no matter what. There's no running out of heat with this guy.And this is what our unit looks like when it's installed here. You can see that it does hook right up to your hot/cold as well as your gas lines and it uses the same existing wiring that you had before.

And the rest of the wires that was for your old unit, you don't need to use any of those because this one comes with its own monitor. So you can adjust the temperatures on it to whatever you want it to be set at. You can adjust the temperature on your remote monitor between 95 and 123 degrees Fahrenheit. So you can get those real hot temperatures for those in your family that like it really hot and the cooler temperatures for those that are a little bit more sensitive. The real gain in efficiency for this water heater is that propane gas is only used when hot water is turned on.

If there's no need for it to cycle on to keep water hot, then there's no demand. The tankless water heater should be 18 to 24% more efficient than the tank style in terms of propane usage.Another thing that's great about this unit is that it can protect itself. It does it in a couple of scenarios, one is in extreme cold temperatures. If it's down around the freezing point, the unit will kick on and heat itself back up to keep your pipes warm so that you don't have any bursts. It also protects itself for a flameout condition where if the pilot light or the flame goes out inside the unit, it'll then shut the gas off.

So that way it's not just continually pumping gas into it, which isn't getting burned since the flame's not there, which would just cause it to enter your cabin. So it protects you from that scenario as well. The unit can handle up to one and a half gallons of water flow per minute and produces 41800 BTUs, which is enough to heat the water that's flowing through it to the desired temperature that you have set.Now we've got it installed, we can take a look at it. We've got some of the other members of our team that are going to come in and give us some more insight on the product inaudible 00:02:37 at home. So do you guys have any particular questions about this particular one here I was just curious overall how well it performs I know we did the XL-1 00:02:50 before and I didn't know if you guys had a chance to play with each one, see the difference Yeah, we didn't get a chance to use the other one that Jake had in here previously, I believe it was XL. But I do believe Jake used it. He said he really liked the way it worked. This one should offer similar performance. It is larger in size than the other one that he had. The other one also was a battery operated unit, so it still ran off propane, but it used a battery to ignite it versus this one here is wired in. So it uses your existing batteries, not to just a small one that's on hand. So this one's a little bit more of a permanent replacement. It's just going to be, the other one's permanent as well, but the other one's smaller. You can fit it in the location. With it being battery operated it might even be easier to install if you we're putting it into something that didn't already have a water heater.This one fits right in the same space, but maybe if you we're tricking out an enclosed trailer or something, the XL-1 might be a better option because it's got that little battery and you wouldn't have to run as many wires. Yeah, this one to me feels like it would be a safer unit than the other one. The other one, since it didn't exhaust at the outside, I'm sure it had the same internal protections that this one does because this one has the if the pilot light goes out, it'll shut off. So that way you don't have to worry about any gas coming out, but this one just being an externally vented, it just seemed like it would be a little bit safer than one that was fully inside like- Speaker 3: Yeah, I don't think that they even recommend it. You had to vent it somewhat via the Excel one, but I don't think that they even said that you needed to vent it to the outside, which we we're surprised about when we we're looking at it. Yeah, I was inaudible 00:04:26 just a little bit of gas. Like this one has the potential to put it outside, whereas that one's so much inside. It's going to shut down anyway. With this a little bit, you might get a little smell maybe with that one whereas this thing might shoot it outside before it shut it off at that point now. Speaker 3: It does seem like the XL, which is essentially like a wall hanging unit, I think they installed it in a cabinet but you can put it anywhere. So that's really popular for people because you can actually put it anywhere. But if I wanted to go with something like that instead of this, which I'm guessing one of the biggest draws for this is that it's essentially a direct replacement for my tank heater. If I do go with an XL and I take out the tank heater, what would I do with that area there I just block it all off Speaker 4: That's what they did. They had a piece of plywood blocking it off. They left the old cover in place and had a piece of plywood blocking it off. Yeah, so this door would be here but it was just sealed off here when you opened the door. It would just be nothing there. Speaker 4: So they had the old door in place, but the piece of plywood blocking it off when you opened it up Yeah, and they had it just blocked off. You could done this, leave the door and turn it into a storage compartment potentially. That's where your particular trailer might be an option. If you want this smaller unit, you can put in a place where you want it and then turn this into a cabinet or if you've already got this space being used by an existing water heater like this one here It's almost not taking up any more space versus the other one you might be taking up space in another area, just open this up. Just depends on what fits best in your trailer really. Speaker 3: Yeah, I was curious about if you could turn it into a bit of storage space. Yeah, it's usually not as nice down here, but if you're handy, just fill up a few panels. You could easily turn it into a little storage space. From what I've seen with this one here the cool part about this over the tank heaters is that this one's going to provide you an endless amount of heated water, it doesn't have a tank that can eventually run dry and then you're trying to heat the water that's in the tank, but eventually it's going to lower that inaudible 00:06:33 on the heat. This is just going to keep that up high the whole time. So I can see where this is going to actually be the benefit customers are going to be looking for. So that way they can have that hot water on demand and watch people be able to go one after the other and now use the showers without having to worry about it running out. Speaker 5: So we've seen that the tankless water heaters, from what I've read, I don't know if everyone else's research says the same thing, but these are supposed to last longer than the traditional tank heater. Do you guys se that being true We haven't been able to use this long enough to confirm it, but it does make sense from a science perspective. With the tank ones, it would have to be running more often to keep that water hot. It does have insulation in there to store it, so it's not running continuously, but it does have to kick off on and off to maintain that heated water where the thing doesn't run at all unless you're demanding hot water from it. Speaker 3: Well you're also not going to have any of those smaller components that you'll have inside of the tank. There's no anode in here that's going to eventually wear out or anything. You want to go look inside Speaker 6: Oh, before we go inside, I was looking at it. So it's looks like it's got really good bud protection around the exhaust port and the vent holes down here and that's a big deal with wasps and things, making a mess inside there and messing up hot water heaters. So the only thing I had a question about is the seal around that tube where the exhaust is coming out. Yeah. Speaker 6: Does that look like it's plenty tight around there that it- It's loose in the door. Speaker 6: . when it's closed But once you close it, you have that extra plate has in the gasket. Lets you line it up and it does seal nice and tight around the door right there. Yeah, once it's closed you really don't have to move it. Speaker 6: The door, does it have a gasket around it when you open it Speaker 5: Hershel 00:08:26 It has seals around this part of it here, but not on the. Oh, it does have seals, mostly seals with a few gaps. Speaker 6: Yeah, so they're doing the best they can to keep all of that stuff out of there that causes problems with a lot of water heaters. Speaker 3: So if that's something that would cause a problem or if that's a common problem, would I be better off going with the wall mounted unit that's inside that isn't going to suck in any bugs Speaker 6: I don't think so. In this case I would probably select this one over the other one, given similar cost or whatever. But yeah, you just got to take steps with most normal water heaters, tank water heaters, to keep wasps and things out of there because they'll get in there and they'll build those mud nests and then your pilot light won't work or your thermal couple won't work or you'll have a big huge nest in there that's blocking the gas from going where it's supposed to go. Speaker 3: So why would you pick this one over like the XL or similar Speaker 6: Because it fits directly as a direct replacement and you don't have a dummy door on the outside of your RV or a place where you need to do something to make a storage area like you guys we're talking about or whatever. And then on the XL-1, it's vented inside the trailer, which it does have that protection so that if it gets to be too much carbon monoxide in there, it'll shut itself down. But I'd rather just have it vented outside of my trailer than inside. Speaker 3: So basically the ease of installation, because it's a super easy replacement. The fact that you don't want to have to deal with modifying your trailer by making it a storage unit or putting a dummy door in and it feels a little safer to you Speaker 6: Yep. Speaker 3: Okay, cool. The XL would be a great option if you didn't have a water heater at all and wanted to add one. It'd be an easier one to just add out, right If you've already got a space for one is and this is almost a no brainer, just slide it in. Let's take a look at the backside. We'll show you a valve. It doesn't come with the unit. It helps protect the pipes inside your system from an overpressure condition. So it's pretty similar on the backside to how your old unit would be. It's got your inlets and outlets and it's got your propane hookup. And then as far as wiring, it's just powering brown, it's a 12 volt set up and then it does have two wires that go to the controller here. Hopefully you'll turn the switch on. So this one's cool because the XL-1, you just basically have two knobs that you have to control with, right Right. Speaker 5: So you have to gauge, over here you can get a direct temperature, exact temperature that you want, so that's pretty cool. Yeah and it does got a little mount, so it comes out. So if you wanted to, you could potentially route this wherever you use it the most, whether it be in your bathroom or near your sink on your kitchen. And now you can have quick access to it to turn it up or down. If it was me, I'd probably just turn it up and then mix my hot and cold water a little bit, but it does have the option. So you can make it make the most efficient and the best temperature that works for you. So this is the valve that we put on that acts as a pressure and temperature relief valve. It does got a little probe in there for temperature as well. That's just in case it gets close to boiling, it'll open up so it doesn't over pressurize. Because once it starts to boil it, the gas starts to expand in there. And then it does have a pressure at about 150 to kick that off. If the pressure does get too high on your outlet side there. And then it just runs out the bottom. You can see that- Little drain hose there. Drain hose coming down and it runs out. Speaker 6: Do you have to drill a hole to take that pressure relief outside the camper, right You probably would in most campers, but this one already has, the hosing already goes through the floor right there. So we we're able to use crosstalk 00:12:46. Speaker 3: And they do recommend that you do that or they require that you have that Speaker 6: It's required. Yeah, it's an ANSI requirement to ensure that you just had the required safety. We don't want anybody getting hurt. Speaker 6: Is that something that is ever likely to happen with a tank For safety sake of course do it anyway, but I'm just wondering if that's something that would be way more common with a tank here than a tankless because if it's on demand, everything should be traveling through. Nothing should really be, it shouldn't really be sitting there waiting to boil, right It really could just be a certain potential conditions. It's just a safety precaution. Maybe if you've got it where you got the heat turned all the way up and you've got a faucet just barely cracked and you just left it run. Maybe under a certain scenario, it could build up pressure on that side. It's unlikely to happen, but it is possible, so it's always best to have there safety precautions there. Speaker 6: Is there a drain to drain this when it's not in use Out front, there is a hose up there. I didn't see a manual release for the drain though. So I did not see that. I would imagine with there not being a tank, there's likely not a need for a drain on it. It did mention in there that it's got some protection for freeze on it, where if it detects a certain condition it'll kick itself on to prevent it from freezing up on the inside. Speaker 6: Okay. So then you would just, winterize it like in line with all your other stuff rather than bypassing it like you have to bypass a tank heater Yeah. Speaker 3: Yeah, that's not- Speaker 6: There's not an epic volume of water Speaker 3: So this will be a lot easier to winterize, yeah. Yeah, I guess that'll wrap it up. We'll get it back to Jake here so Jake can put some more miles on it and I'll let us really know how he likes this one compared to the XL. And that completes our look at the tankless water heater.


Questions and Comments about this Video

Tamara

We picked up our brand new trailer and our Fogatti tankless water heater won't work..keeps throwing and E5 code and of course we can't get in to get it fixed until september, we are not amused....any suggestions would help at this point. Thank you

Etrailer Expert
Reply from Jon G.

The E5 code is listed as "Fan failure, no fan signal detected during start-up or water heater operation." in the owner's manual. If you're comfortable messing with the water heater then I would double check the fan connections and that it is cleared out.

Info for these parts were:

Employee Jacob T
Video Edited:
Jacob T
Employee Dustin K
Video by:
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Employee David F
Test Fit:
David F

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