Unnoticed or considered benign by homeowners and contractors inexperienced in installing tankless water heaters, this problem is serious enough for manufacturers to recall up to $55 million worth of product.
Tankless water heaters generate love-'em-or-hate-'em dialogue on popular do-it-yourself and homeowner blogs. Advocates praise the energy savings of tankless heaters while opponents sometimes colorfully blast their flaws. The passion of the arguments, the number of units recalled, and the lack of online buzz about CO poisoning raise a concern that potentially hundreds of thousands of people remain unaware that they and their families are at risk of injury or loss of life.
If you purchased a Rheem, Ruud, Rheem-Ruud, Richmond, or Paloma tankless gas water heater from May 2004 to December 2006, stop using it and contact Rheem Manufacturing Company for a free, on-site assessment and repair.
If you have experienced elevated CO levels in your home or invested in repair costs without knowing the source of the problem, or being aware of the manufacturer's liability, contact a lawyer to assess your claim immediately.
Regardless of the type of water heater you use, keep a CO detector with working batteries outside all sleeping areas in your home at all times.
By Lynne Melcombe