The True Cost of a Navien Tankless Water Heater

The True Cost of a Navien Tankless Water Heater

Embarking on the journey of purchasing a tankless water heater, especially from a top-tier brand like Navien, can be a complex endeavor. The lack of transparency in pricing from many manufacturers often leaves customers in a quandary. However, with over 15 years of experience installing tankless water heaters, I’ve gained a deep understanding of what you can realistically expect to pay for a Navien model.

How Much Does a Navien Tankless Water Heater Cost?

The cost of a Navien tankless water heater varies depending on the series and model. Prices range from $1,950 to $3,500, including professional installation. 

When exploring the cost of Navien tankless water heaters, it’s insightful to delve into the specific price ranges for each series and model. Navien offers both condensing and non-condensing units, with each category catering to different budget levels:

  • NPN-U Series (Low/Medium Budget):
    • Models: 160U, 180U, 199U
    • Price Range: $1,950 – $2,500 (Including professional installation)
    • Features: The NPN-U series represents Navien’s non-condensing line, offering efficient water heating solutions at a more accessible price point.
  • NPN-E Series (Medium Budget):
    • Models: 120E, 160E, 180E, 199E
    • Price Range: $1,800 – $2,750
    • Features: This series also falls into the non-condensing category, with slightly varied pricing, reflecting differences in capacity and features.
  • NPE-S2 Series (Medium/High Budget):
    • Models: 150S2, 180S2, 210S2, 240S2
    • Price Range: $2,300 – $3,050
    • Features: The NPE-S2 represents Navien’s step into the condensing tankless water heater market, offering higher efficiency and a correspondingly higher price range.
  • NPE-A2 Series (High Budget):
    • Models: 180A2, 210A2, 240A2
    • Price Range: $2,650 – $3,500
    • Features: The premium offering in Navien’s lineup, the NPE-A2 series, includes top-of-the-line condensing models featuring the latest technology and the highest efficiency.
Navien NPE-240A2 Condensing Tankless Water Heater

Comparing Navien’s Prices with Other Water Heater Brands

Navien’s tankless water heaters, while offering advanced technology and high efficiency, are priced slightly higher than average than other leading brands like Rinnai or Rheem.

This difference in pricing can be attributed to:

  1. Technology and Efficiency: Navien focuses on high-efficiency condensing models, which are generally more expensive than non-condensing ones.
  2. Brand Reputation and Quality: Navien is known for its quality and durability, which often command a premium price.
  3. Market Positioning: Navien is a premium, high-efficiency water heating solution provider, reflecting its pricing strategy.

To understand how these brands differ in price, features, and models, exploring each tankless water heater brand pages and comparing the offerings side-by-side is advisable.

Additional Costs Beyond the Unit Price

Purchasing a Navien tankless water heater is only part of the financial equation.

Several additional factors can inflate your overall investment:

Installation Costs

While the unit might cost up to $2,300, installation can drive your total expense from $4,700 to $8,300. This includes variations in installation quality, from basic to premium packages that offer long-term benefits like expansion tanks and water treatment solutions.

Venting Adjustments

Adjustments to your home’s venting system can start at around $395 and increase depending on the work needed. The cost escalates with the amount of venting required and the complexity of the installation.

Water Line Modifications

If your water lines need upgrading or if you’re relocating your water heater, this could add between $395 to $995 to your bill. The condition and layout of your existing water lines play a significant role in these costs.

Gas Line Upgrades

Many homes with standard ½-inch gas lines may require upgrading to ¾-inch lines for compatibility with tankless models. This upgrade can be one of the more costly aspects of installation, potentially reaching up to $3,900.

Tips To Save On Water Heater Installation

Hiring a qualified professional to install your tankless water heater is crucial for ensuring safety and efficiency. Here’s a detailed approach to selecting the right installer:

  • Obtain Multiple Estimates:
    • Gather Quotes: Start by getting at least three estimates from licensed plumbers. This allows you to compare costs, services, and timelines.
    • Cost vs. Quality Balance: While the price is important, it shouldn’t be the sole deciding factor. Consider the value and quality of service as well.
  • Experience in Tankless Water Heater Installation:
    • Specialized Skills: Look for plumbers with specific experience with tankless water heater installations. This expertise is crucial for proper setup and operation.
    • Ask for References: Request to see examples of their previous installations or ask for references to gauge their expertise.
  • Research and Reviews:
    • Online Reviews: Utilize platforms like HomeGuide and Google to read reviews and feedback from previous customers.
    • Reputation Check: Assess the overall reputation of the installers. Consistently positive reviews are a good indicator of reliable service.
  • Credentials and Insurance:
    • Licensing and Certification: Ensure the companies you consider are licensed, insured, and bonded. This protects you from any liabilities and ensures a standard level of service.
    • Verification: Don’t hesitate to ask for proof of these credentials.
  • Inclusion of Old Water Heater Removal:
    • Comprehensive Service: Confirm that the quote includes the removal of your old water heater. This is a crucial aspect of the installation process.
  • Detailed Written Agreement:
    • Itemized Estimate and Contract: Request an itemized estimate and a written contract. This should include detailed descriptions of the work, the timeline, and the costs.
    • Warranty Information: Ensure that warranty details for both labor and parts are included in the written agreement.
  • Payment Terms:
    • Avoid Full Upfront Payment: It’s advisable not to pay the full amount before the project starts. A payment plan that aligns with the progress of the work is more secure.
    • Understand the Payment Schedule: Be clear about when and how much you need to pay at each project stage.

Following these steps can help you find a reliable and competent installer for your tankless water heater, ensuring a smooth and efficient installation process.

In summary, Navien tankless water heaters from low/medium to high budget levels offer various choices for different consumer needs. While their prices are slightly higher than some competitors, the investment can be justified by their advanced technology, efficiency, and the brand’s strong reputation for quality. When considering a tankless water heater, it’s important to weigh these factors against your budget and specific requirements to make an informed decision.

The cost of a Navien tankless water heater extends beyond the sticker price of the unit. Considering installation, venting, water, and gas line modifications, you can form a more accurate budget for this upgrade. This comprehensive understanding will aid in determining whether a Navien tankless water heater aligns with your needs and financial plan.