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 With an Energy Factor (EF) of 2.45, the new Rheem Prestige™ Series Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater has the highest efficiency in its class. It costs less than $16 a month to operate, and homeowners can expect to save $329 annually with this ENERGY STAR®-qualified unit, compared to a standard 50-gallon electric model (0.90 EF and 4,879 kWh).

“Rheem introduced the first hybrid electric heat pump water heater in 2009, and we’ve set the pace for the industry again with the launch of our Prestige Series Hybrid,” said Bryan Collar, product manager, Rheem Water Heating division. “This is the most efficient water heater available today, and it’s the only one with an intuitive color touch-screen, which makes the unit easier to operate for homeowners and provides helpful, easy-to-read diagnostics for contractors.”

The Rheem Prestige Series Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater uses the power of air to heat water more efficiently. Instead of heating stored water directly with a conventional electric element this water heater transfers available heat from the ambient air, intensifies the heat
and transfers the heat into the water. Rheem employed its 360° +1 design philosophy, which involves Rheem engineers evaluating every detail of a product and then creating new designs that promise greater serviceability, installability and performance. Rheem developed its Prestige Series Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater using this philosophy, and contractors will benefit from a number of enhancements.

The most noticeable update is the inclusion of the water heater industry’s first-ever full-color, backlit touch-screen control. The touch-screen provides homeowner service alerts as well as detailed, text-based diagnostic information for the contractor, which makes problem solving and troubleshooting easier. Rheem has also integrated its exclusive EcoNet™ technology into this unit, which will facilitate future connectivity between Rheem appliances—such as heating and cooling systems, pool and spa heaters, and remote access tools. It will also ensure optimal performance and energy savings for homeowners, while simplifying installation, maintenance and troubleshooting for contractors. Additionally, EcoNet is future-compatible with home automation, energy management and demand-response systems. The Rheem Hybrid is EcoNet ready right out of the box.

From an installation standpoint, this unit has a 21-inch diameter so it will fit easily through access doors or other narrow spots. Contractors can install this unit in locations such as garages, attics, basements and even smaller enclosed areas, as long as the space has louvered doors to provide adequate airflow. The installation process is the same as any standard electric water heater.

Additional features of the Rheem Prestige Series Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater include:
• Powerful Compressor: This 8,700 Btu/h compressor is the most powerful compressor in its class, so more water is heated by the heat pump and less by costly elements.
• Widest Ambient Operating Temperature Range: This unit has the widest ambient operating temperature range in its class (37 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit). It’s also certified for operation in Northern climates, meaning it can be installed in cooler geographic areas and use the heat pump more days throughout the year.
• New Heat Transfer Technology: A new wrap-around condenser maximizes the transfer of heat with no circulation pump required.
• New Magnesium Anode Rod: This patented magnesium anode rod with resistor is designed to extend the life of the tank.
• Built-in Dry Fire Protection: If the unit is operated before it is full of water, the system recognizes an over-heat condition and shuts down to prevent element failure.

The Rheem Prestige Series Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater is available for order in the U.S. in a 50-gallon capacity model. It will launch in Canada later this year. This model qualifies for a $300 federal energy efficiency tax credit, which will be available to homeowners in the U.S. through the end of 2013.

The Rheem Prestige Series of water heating products also includes the company’s Condensing Tankless Water Heater and its High-Efficiency Condensing Power Direct Vent (PDV) Water Heater. For more information on the new Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater,
visit Rheem.com/Hybrid.

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