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FAQs




General Questions

Are Vaughn heaters made in the USA?

Yes. Vaughn water heaters are all made in the USA and our factories located in Connecticut and Massachusetts and qualify for incentives under The Buy American Act and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). For more information go to the following link Here.

Where can I purchase a Vaughn water heater?

There are numerous ways to purchase a Vaughn water heater depending upon the model you desire and your geographic location. The easiest way is either to visit our "Where to Buy" option in the red menu bar across the website, or contact Vaughn directly at 978-462-6683 and ask for the sales department where you will be directed to either our local representative or our order entry department for quick and easy ordering.

What code requirements are applicable for my installation?

The installation of water heaters are mostly governed by the Uniform Plumbing Code (or CPC in California), Uniform Mechanical Code, and National Electrical Code. These are standard codes that are used across the United States, and each state can amend them as they wish. To take it further, each city and county jurisdiction has assigned one or more building officials with what is called Administrative Authority. This Authority" allows each jurisdiction the right to interpret the codes as they see fit. Because of this many cities differ on their requirements. Vaughn strongly recommends that you contract with a plumbing engineer who knows and understands the intricacies of the building code requirements for your location.

Is it OK if my plumbing system has plastic pipes (PVC or PEX)?

Yes. All Vaughn water heaters will work with both types of plastic piping.

My question is not found in these FAQ’s, where do I look next?

Check out the Vaughn Product Center at Here for a complete listing of all technical Operation & Maintenance manuals documentation available by model. Get easy access to Installation Sales Brochures Service Bulletins Wiring Schematics Parts Breakdowns and various other technical documents related to the full line of Vaughn water heaters. Or if you prefer please call us at 978-462-6683 and ask to speak with Sales.

I don't see the size or feature I need, what do I do?

Vaughn has more than 35 product families available in over 4,000,000 configurations. There are numerous features, configurations and ratings we provide but for practical reasons are are not listed in the sales brochure. If you have a specific requirement and you do not see it in the brochure, please contact a Vaughn Sales Engineer...chances are we have what you need.

How do I get service or technical support for my Vaughn heater?

Should you require support for your Vaughn water heater we ask that you first contact the installer of the water heater or local contractor for troubleshooting assistance. Our technical support representatives are available to answer any questions you and your contractor may have and assist in troubleshooting your problem and directing you to a resolution.

What temperature should I set my water heater to?

For typical domestic potable hot water service the temperature of your water heater at 125°F is sufficient. This prevents wasted energy (which means cost savings for you) and also decreases the possibility of scalding water burns. If you run out of hot water on this setting, increase the temperature by five degrees incrementally until your hot water needs are met. The goal is to have the temperature set just high enough to meet your needs but within safe operating parameters. Please note that a water heater in and of itself should not be relied upon as the ultimate temperature controlling source for the hot water delivered to your fixtures. Please consult local and state codes for installation of the proper and code approved (ASSE 1016, 1070, 1017) mixing devices to achieve the safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more complete information please download the whitepaper PDF titled Understanding Potential Water Heater Scald Hazards" developed by ASSE at the following link ASSE Whitepaper

Where can I purchase replacement parts?

Parts are available for your Vaughn water heater through our network of distributors. To locate the distributor nearest to you, please visit our "Where to Buy" tab in the red menu bar and select "find a distributor." You will be prompted for your postal/ZIP code. When speaking with a distributor about replacement parts, please have your model and serial number at the ready to ensure prompt, accurate service.

Are any Federal, State, local or utility incentives available?

Depending upon your location and the type of water heater you select for your application, there may be financial incentives offered by the local, state or federal government and/or your local utility. By visiting the following website at Incentives and clicking on your state you may find available rebates and incentives.

What is thermal expansion and how does it affect me?

Thermal expansion is created when water in a hot water system expands due to increasing temperature. When there are no faucets/fixtures open to release the excessive pressure caused by the water being heated up, and if there is no expansion tank in the system to absorb the expanded water, then it is likely that the water heater T&P (temperature and pressure) relief valve will open slightly and begin to drip to release the excessive pressure. This is not a condition that the T&P relief valve is intended, it is a safety device not an operational device. Thermal expansion can be evident immediately upon a new installation when a cold system is first undergoing heat up, or even occur years in the future due to seemingly unrelated changes to the plumbing system but enough so that thermal expansion becomes a problem. If Thermal expansion is present a properly sized expansion tank should be installed to resolve this problem.

What is the max water temperature setting?

The Vaughn cement lined tank is suitable for storing water up to 194°F. This is done almost exclusively for commercial, indutrial, and agricultural sanitation purposes. It should be noted that your water heater will likely require optional control accessories/inputs to achieve this temperature. Please note that there are numerous safety concerns including scalding that must be considered when storing water at elevated temperatures; please consult our factory directly to determine the proper safeguard equipment if you are considering storing water at higher temperature.

What is the difference between surface and immersion thermostats?

A surface thermostat is a bi metallic sensing temperature regulating thermostat that senses the outer wall temperature of the water heater tank. An immersion thermostat is a bulb and capillary style temperature regulating thermostat that senses the water temperature through a dry immersion well in the water. A surface thermostat is adjustable up to a maximum of 170oF and an immersion thermostat adjusts up to a maximum of 194oF. A surface thermostat is typically used in low wattage water heaters, whereas an immersion thermostat is used in high wattage water heaters.

Is there a cold water dip tube in the Vaughn tank?

Not exactly. The Vaughn cement lined electric tank includes a cold water diffuser integrated into the cold water connection which allows incoming cold water to be introduced into the tank in a controlled and non turbulent manner, thus avoiding premature mixing of cold water with the hot water in the tank. On Vaughn cement lined tanks the cold water inlet/diffuser is located on the side in the lower portion of the tank. Therefore, a Vaughn cement lined tank does not require a long dip tube extending all the way from the top to the bottom of the tank. The Vaughn cement lined Top Performer Plus indirect water heater does have a top-down dip tube.

My T&P relief valve is dripping water, what does this mean?

A temperature and pressure (T&P) relief valve is a safety device intended to relieve excessive pressure (typically >150psi) or excessive temperature (210°F/99°C). Typically, a dripping T&P is most likely the result of excessive pressure build up in the water heater. When a T&P opens due to excessive temperature, you will most likely see a significant amount of steam in the air as the water flashes into steam as it discharges from the T&P. A relief valve discharging due to excessive pressure is by far the most common reason for relief valve discharge. It is also worth noting that a T&P relief valve will begin to open when pressure is within 5% of its set pressure rating, as an example a 150psi relief valve will begin to open and “weep” at 142psi. See FAQ relating to thermal expansion for a more detailed discussion of this problem.

What is the water pressure drop through the tank?

There is no major restriction of water flow through the Vaughn water heater. Cold water inlet and hot water outlet sizes are available in ¾” and 1-1/2” sizes to accommodate your application. By far, the ¾” size is more than adequate for most applications using a Model S or ME water heater. If your flow rate through the water heater is greater than approximately 10 GPM you may want to consider the 1-1/2” connection option (must be specified at time of ordering). As an approximate, pressure drop through any E model water heater with ¾” connections will be <4 psi with a flow rate of <10 GPM, and with 1-1/2” connections the pressure drop will be <3 psi with a flow rate of <20 GPM.

Why is the T&P valve tested to ASME standards (as opposed to CSA)?

The Vaughn water heater is built to and approved by UL to ANSI/UL 174 and CAN/CSA-C22.2 No. 110 (1990). These standards require that each assembled water heater be shipped with a factory installed combination temperature and pressure relief valve sized in accordance with ASME requirements. However, if a relief valve sized to CSA is required, you must indicate this at time of requesting a quote for your water heater as this may necessitate a larger opening in the tank to accommodate a larger CSA relief valve. For reference, please see the following link to an article on this subject Here

How does my water heater ship?

All Vaughn water heaters ship via common carrier and are classified by the Commodity Classification Standards Board under National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) class 100. Each water heater is palletized and wood crated. To provide the lowest transportation cost, in most cases the shipment is made on Vaughn’s account and the freight cost is added to the invoice, commonly referred to as “Pre pay and add”. For very large shipments, the most economical method (LTL or Dedicated Truck) for transporting the water heaters to the final destination will be analyzed by Vaughn's transportation department.

Do I need a thermal expansion tank?

Yes, it is recommended that a thermal expansion tank be installed with your water heater, and in many instances this is required by code. When water is heated it expands. If your system is “open” then water can backflow into the water main and this “extra” expanded water simply flows back out your system. Increasingly, plumbing systems are being closed off and backflow prevention valves are being placed between homes and the water main. This is done for a variety of reasons. For example, increasingly valves are placed between homes and water mains to protect plumbing systems from inlet water pressure. Water pressure is increasing in many cases in order to meet the demands of more densely populated areas. If your system is “closed”, then this means when you heat your water and it expands, this increased volume has nowhere to go. As water is not a very compressible material, this causes sudden increases in water pressure which can damage your water heater and your other appliances. A thermal expansion tank is a pressurized tank typically located in line immediately before the water heater. The tank contains a pressurized bladder. As your water expands, it pushes against this bladder giving the increased volume a place to go preventing rapid pressure increases due to thermal expansion. If your system is closed, installing an expansion tank may lengthen the life of your water heater by preventing excessive pressure cycling. In addition, if your home has a history of leaky faucets or other appliances that wear out prematurely, an expansion tank may fix your problem. If you are using a tankless heater, because this type of heater heats water only on demand, you may net need an expansion tank, please consult with your local installer.

The heater will be installed in Canada, what is CRN?

All provinces of Canada have adopted the ASME Code and require vessels to be stamped with a provincial registration number in addition to the ASME symbol and National Board stamping. Before construction begins, one requirement has to be met in all provinces of Canada. We must submit blueprints and specification sheets in triplicate of all designs for approval and registration by the chief inspector of the province in which the vessel is to be used. After the chief inspector receives the drawings, they are checked by an engineer to determine their compliance with the Code and also with provincial regulations. A CRN number is assigned and must be stamped on the vessel in addition to the ASME symbol and National Board stamping. Once the design has been approved and registered, any number of vessels of that design can be built and used in the province where it was approved. This process is repeated for each province. The Canadian provinces also require their own manufacturer's affidavit form, with the registration number and the shop inspector's signature on the data sheets. Finally, when a vessel is delivered to a purchaser in Canada, an affidavit of manufacturer bearing registration number and the signature of the authorized shop inspector must be sent to the chief inspector of the province for which it is intended.

Do Vaughn water heaters qualify as Low Lead?

Yes, all Vaughn water heater models qualify as meeting the low lead requirements of the “Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act” amendment to the “Safe Drinking Water Act” (SDWA) Section 1417(d) effective as of January 4, 2014. Vaughn certifies that its water heaters meet the following requirements of the SDWA and therefore are qualified and certified as Low Lead : (a)Vaughn water heater do not contain more than 0.2 percent lead with respect to solder and flux (b)Vaughn water heaters do not contain more than a weighted average of 0.25 percent lead with respect to all wetted surfaces of the water heater.

Is it OK to use softened water with my cement lined tank?

Yes it is OK. A water softener system will not affect the longevity or operation of a Vaughn cement lined water heater tank. A water softener is typically installed when a potable water system has hard water resulting in the need to soften the water. Unfortunately, the salt used in a water softener corrodes the anode rod and exposed steel surfaces of the water heater tank, rapidly causing a glass lined water heater to corrode and leak within a few years. This is an issue for a glass lined water heater due to its reliance on a sacrificial anode, however because a cement lined tank does not use a sacrificial anode softened water is of no concern to the Vaughn cement lined tank.

Why is a cement lined tank a better choice than stainless steel tank?

In almost all cases, a cement lined steel tank is a more robust tank compared to stainless steel. The weakness of a stainless steel tank is in the materials susceptibility to SCC (Stress Corrosion Cracking) caused by chlorides, bromides, iodides and fluorides in the water. The combination of residual stresses from welding, roll forming and stamping, and the cyclic stress from operating in a hot water system are sources of tensile stress, that when above a certain threshold stress, will make a stainless steel water heater tank susceptible to stress corrosion cracking. Cement lined steel tanks are not susceptible to this condition, and therefore are more resistant to corrosion and withstand the pressure and temperature cyclical operation of a water heater.

Top Performer Plus Series

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

Back to Top Performer Plus Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Commercial Indirect Series

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Commercial Indirect Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Residential Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Can a timer be installed on my Vaughn water heater?

Water heater timers are devices that provide automatic control of electric water heaters. They can be programmed to turn a water heater off or on at times typically set by your local utility. Your local electric utility may have in place an “Off-Peak” or Time-of-Use (TOU) rates which offer a customer the incentive to consume power during certain periods of the day. The Vaughn S and ME Models are available with various timer control options, ranging from programmable 7 day timers to utility specific devices that control the water heater.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is the average life of an electric water heater?

The most important factor related to the life expectancy of a water heater is the quality and type of storage tank. On an average the life expectancy of a glass lined electric water heater is about 10-12 years (according to the National Association of Home Builders 2007 Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components http://www.nahb.org/fileUpload_details.aspx?contentID=99359 ), compared to a cement lined electric water heater’s average life expectancy of 23-26 years (Independent study of over 25,000 installations for an Electric Utility). Of course, there are various other factors that affect longevity including pressure fluctuations, usage, water conditions, environmental conditions, etc.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is an Energy Factor (EF) rating?

The Energy Factor (EF) rating represents the efficiency of the water heater. The higher the EF, the more efficient the water heater unit. Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters are classified by the Department of Energy as residential water heaters and are rated by an Energy Factor (EF) ranging from 0.80 to 0.95. The higher the EF, the more the heater transfers energy to the water using less energy. Please note that the use of R values as a measure of efficiency is incomplete and does therefore does not accurately capture a water heater’s true efficiency as does the EF rating. For additional information check out the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) website at AHRI as well as the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) website at ACEEE

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Residential Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Commercial Light Duty Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Commercial Light Duty Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Hybrid Heat Pump Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Can a timer be installed on my Vaughn water heater?

Water heater timers are devices that provide automatic control of electric water heaters. They can be programmed to turn a water heater off or on at times typically set by your local utility. Your local electric utility may have in place an “Off-Peak” or Time-of-Use (TOU) rates which offer a customer the incentive to consume power during certain periods of the day. The Vaughn S and ME Models are available with various timer control options, ranging from programmable 7 day timers to utility specific devices that control the water heater.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is the average life of an electric water heater?

The most important factor related to the life expectancy of a water heater is the quality and type of storage tank. On an average the life expectancy of a glass lined electric water heater is about 10-12 years (according to the National Association of Home Builders 2007 Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components http://www.nahb.org/fileUpload_details.aspx?contentID=99359 ), compared to a cement lined electric water heater’s average life expectancy of 23-26 years (Independent study of over 25,000 installations for an Electric Utility). Of course, there are various other factors that affect longevity including pressure fluctuations, usage, water conditions, environmental conditions, etc.

What type of maintenance does a heat pump water heater require?

Unlike standard electric water heaters, heat pump water heaters use an air filter. These filters need to be cleaned to ensure efficient operation. In addition, a HPWH generates condensate which must be plumbed to a proper drain. This condensate drain may be gravity or pump assisted, and in both cases needs to be periodically inspected and cleaned to ensure proper drainage. Other maintenance needs are similar to standard electric water heaters.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Why choose a HPWH versus a standard electric water heater?

HPWH’s are the latest technology in water heating and provide the highest efficiency available for heating water. As a comparison, the Vaughn high efficiency 50 gallon electric water heater is estimated to cost $508 per year to operate, whereas the Vaughn model WHPT heat pump water heater is estimated to cost $201 per year, a savings of $307 annually. So, from an operating cost standpoint, the advantage of a HPWH is clear. However, other factors need to be considered when deciding HPWH versus electric water heater. One major factor is the initial total installed cost of the heater, with a heat pump water heater approximately 2-3 times higher cost compared to a traditional electric water heater. Compared to a standard electric water heater a HPWH is a more challenging and therefore more expensive installation, has more restrictions with respect to installation conditions and is newer technology and therefore to a certain degree less proven and more challenging to service. Having said that, a HPWH is by far the most efficient method for heating water and deserves careful consideration if it is right for your application.

What is the difference between a Hybrid and a Heat Pump Water Heater?

These terms are interchangeable and refer to the same type of heater. The term “Hybrid” arose when manufacturer’s combined standard type electric water heaters with a heat pump to create a new type of water heater. This new type of water heater includes both electric resistance heating and heat pump technologies, and therefore the term Hybrid water heater was coined. However, the marketplace is also calling this new type of water heater a Heat Pump Water Heater even though it includes resistance heaters. The only time when a heat pump water heater would not be considered a hybrid is if it did not include any form of electric resistance heater. The Vaughn model WHPT water heater is comprised of both resistance heaters and a heat pump system, and therefore is considered a hybrid, although as noted above is also referred to simply as a heat pump water heater.

Is a heat pump water heater right for where I live?

When selecting a heat pump water heater model it is important to take your climate into consideration. Some climates experience freezing temperatures; water heaters installed in these climates in unheated locations require protection from freezing and other additional safety and performance features. The Northern Climate Specification Qualified Products List will help you find the right heat pump water heater for your location, for details click here Northern Climate Report " state or federal government and/or your local utility. By visiting Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency Here and clicking on your state.

What rebates are available for a heat pump water heater?

Check our rebates and tax credits page at Here for a list of available rebates and tax credits before installing a new heat pump water heater. There may be financial incentives offered by local, state or federal government and/or your local utility. By visiting Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency Here and clicking on your state, you may find available rebates and incentives.

Where can I install a heat pump water heater?

Heat pump water heaters can be installed in a variety of locations, from a garage to a heated utility room. Things to consider include space, sound, cold air, and size/height. For more information, visit Here.

How does a Heat Pump Water Heater (HPWH) water heater work?

The heat pump removes a small amount of heat from the surrounding air, heats the water and moves the cooler air back into the room. The Vaughn model WHPT Heat Pump Water Heater produces the same amount of hot water as a traditional electric water heater, but with greater efficiency. Think of the HPWH as a refrigerator working in reverse. Just as a refrigerator removes heat from its enclosed interior and releases the heat into the surrounding kitchen, a HPWH takes heat from the surrounding air and transfers that heat into the water of the tank. These things are normal with a Vaughn HPWH: It is normal for cool air to blow out the vents on the back cover of the water heater. The air is moved through the water heater by a fan located within the heat pump enclosure on the top of the water heater. You will hear the sound of this fan pulling the air through the heat pump system. As the water heater determines the right amount of energy needed to heat the water the fans will change speed and the sound will increase and decrease. For a detailed discussion regarding HPWH’s please go Here.

What sound is generated by the Vaughn Heat Pump Water Heater?

It depends on which operating mode the HPWH is set to. There are a total of five (5) operating modes available: Economy, Hybrid, Electric, Super and Vacation. The Vaughn HPWH makes no sound when in Electric or Vacation mode. If Economy, Hybrid or Super mode is selected the Vaughn HPWH will make noise as the fan operates and pulls air through the heat pump. If the Vaughn HPWH electronic controller detects any fault condition it will make a beeping sound and display an error code.

Why does cold air blow from the heater?

Cold air will blow from the water heater any time it is operating utilizing the heat pump. The heat pump works by using a small amount of the heat from the surrounding air to heat the water in the tank. The by-product of the heat pump system is cold air, the warm air is pulled through the system fan to heat the water, then the remaining cooler air is moved out the side of the heater.

Can I stop cold air or fan noise?

You can temporarily stop the cold air and fan noise coming from the water heater by pressing the FAN OFF button. During this period of time the water heater will operate in Electric mode, thereby preventing the fan from operating. You can adjust the length of time this feature.

What is the Energy Factor (EF) rating?

The Energy Factor (EF) rating represents the efficiency of the water heater. The higher the EF, the more efficient the water heater unit. The Vaughn Model WHPT heat pump water heaters are classified by the Department of Energy as residential water heaters and are rated by an Energy Factor (EF) ranging from 2.2 to 2.35 depending upon the model size you select. Please note that the use of R values as a measure of efficiency is incomplete and does therefore does not accurately capture a water heater’s true efficiency as does the EF rating. For additional information check out the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) website at Here as well as the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) website at Here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Hybrid Heat Pump Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Commercial Light Duty Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What does 3 phase Open Delta wiring mean to me?

Without getting into a lengthy discourse on electricity, the simple answer is that any water heater internally wired in a 3 phase open delta configuration is unbalanced, meaning that the amperage drawn by one of the three legs is high and unequal to the other two legs. This unbalanced water heater can have a detrimental effect on a buildings power system and therefore needs to be carefully understood before you install a water heater configured for 3 phase open delta. It should be noted that the branch circuit protection (i.e. circuit breaker) servicing a 3 phase open delta water heater needs to be sized for the high amperage leg. The Hubbell model E is available up to a maximum of 12kw in 3 phase open delta wiring. Alternatively, the Hubbell model SE is a balanced 3 phase water heater, meaning that all three legs draw equal amperage. The Model SE is available up to 58kw click here details Model SE

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Commercial Light Duty Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Commercial Heavy Duty Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What does 3 phase Open Delta wiring mean to me?

Without getting into a lengthy discourse on electricity, the simple answer is that any water heater internally wired in a 3 phase open delta configuration is unbalanced, meaning that the amperage drawn by one of the three legs is high and unequal to the other two legs. This unbalanced water heater can have a detrimental effect on a buildings power system and therefore needs to be carefully understood before you install a water heater configured for 3 phase open delta. It should be noted that the branch circuit protection (i.e. circuit breaker) servicing a 3 phase open delta water heater needs to be sized for the high amperage leg. The Hubbell model E is available up to a maximum of 12kw in 3 phase open delta wiring. Alternatively, the Hubbell model SE is a balanced 3 phase water heater, meaning that all three legs draw equal amperage. The Model SE is available up to 58kw click here details Model SE

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Commercial Heavy Duty Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Sanitizer Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is the average life of an electric water heater?

The most important factor related to the life expectancy of a water heater is the quality and type of storage tank. On an average the life expectancy of a glass lined electric water heater is about 10-12 years (according to the National Association of Home Builders 2007 Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components http://www.nahb.org/fileUpload_details.aspx?contentID=99359 ), compared to a cement lined electric water heater’s average life expectancy of 23-26 years (Independent study of over 25,000 installations for an Electric Utility). Of course, there are various other factors that affect longevity including pressure fluctuations, usage, water conditions, environmental conditions, etc.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Sanitizer Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Condensing Gas Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

What if I need more than 250,000 BTU/Hr for my application?

Simple, you would install multiple units to achieve your desired BTU. You can install and manifold together upto 10 Vaughn gas tankless water heaters without the need for a a master controller. If you would like to simplify the installation of a multi heater system, Vaughn can factory integrate the heaters into a rack system including manifold water piping to simplify the installation process.

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

What are the minimal mounting clearances?

From combustibles: Top 6”, Back 5/8”, Sides 1”, Front 2”, Bottom 12”.From non-combustibles: Top 2” Back 5/8” Sides 1/2” Front 2” Bottom 12”

What type of venting can I use?

The Vaughn gas tankless heater can be vented with PVC, CPVC or Polypropylene. Please see Installation, Operation and Maintenance manual for complete venting details.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Condensing Gas Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Non Condensing Gas Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

What if I need more than 250,000 BTU/Hr for my application?

Simple, you would install multiple units to achieve your desired BTU. You can install and manifold together upto 10 Vaughn gas tankless water heaters without the need for a a master controller. If you would like to simplify the installation of a multi heater system, Vaughn can factory integrate the heaters into a rack system including manifold water piping to simplify the installation process.

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

What are the minimal mounting clearances?

From combustibles: Top 6”, Back 5/8”, Sides 1”, Front 2”, Bottom 12”.From non-combustibles: Top 2” Back 5/8” Sides 1/2” Front 2” Bottom 12”

What type of venting can I use?

The Vaughn gas tankless heater can be vented with PVC, CPVC or Polypropylene. Please see Installation, Operation and Maintenance manual for complete venting details.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Non Condensing Gas Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Buffer Tanks Series

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Buffer Tanks Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Aqua Booster Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Aqua Booster Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Range Boiler Series

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Range Boiler Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Solar Heater (SLN) Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is the average life of an electric water heater?

The most important factor related to the life expectancy of a water heater is the quality and type of storage tank. On an average the life expectancy of a glass lined electric water heater is about 10-12 years (according to the National Association of Home Builders 2007 Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components http://www.nahb.org/fileUpload_details.aspx?contentID=99359 ), compared to a cement lined electric water heater’s average life expectancy of 23-26 years (Independent study of over 25,000 installations for an Electric Utility). Of course, there are various other factors that affect longevity including pressure fluctuations, usage, water conditions, environmental conditions, etc.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Why do I need a back up electric immersion heater in my solar tank?

Depending on the application, number of solar panels, etc. one may not actually need a backup electrical element. Generally speaking, the electrical elements are present in the tank to ensure the continuous supply of hot water in the event of prolonged cloudiness (resulting in much less solar contribution to the tank), temporary increases in hot water demand such as holiday gatherings, and the like.

What is OG-300?

OG-300 is a solar thermal system rating given by the Solar Rating & Certification Corporation (SRCC). OG-300 verifies the total system performance and safety, and is required by some states and organizations in order to collect renewable energy incentives.

Is the Vaughn heater OG-300 approved?

The Vaughn solar tank is OG-300 certified with both AET and Apricus systems.

Can I get solar panels with my Vaughn heater?

No. Vaughn focuses on designing and building the most efficient and long lasting solar water heater only. The ancillary solar system components must be purchased separately.

Are state or federal tax credits available?

Federal tax credits are available on solar water heaters, whether performing upgrades or maintenance on an existing system or installing new. Save all receipts- including labor bills, arborist invoices (if necessary/ applicable) etc. and use the total amount to complete IRS Form 5695 when filing your taxes, and affix a copy to your form 1040 or 1040NR. For more information about state and municipal energy credits, visit here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Solar Heater (SLN) Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Geothermal Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Geothermal Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Custom Designed Series

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Can a timer be installed on my Vaughn water heater?

Water heater timers are devices that provide automatic control of electric water heaters. They can be programmed to turn a water heater off or on at times typically set by your local utility. Your local electric utility may have in place an “Off-Peak” or Time-of-Use (TOU) rates which offer a customer the incentive to consume power during certain periods of the day. The Vaughn S and ME Models are available with various timer control options, ranging from programmable 7 day timers to utility specific devices that control the water heater.

Is the Vaughn heat exchanger removable?

Yes. The heat exchanger is fully removable in all Vaughn indirect water heaters. The benefit to having a removable heat exchanger is that the coil can be removed for cleaning and de-scaling for improved performance and efficiency when used in hard water applications. It should be noted that the heat exchanger is not removable and the coil cannot be cleaned in many other indirect water heater brands.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What does 3 phase Open Delta wiring mean to me?

Without getting into a lengthy discourse on electricity, the simple answer is that any water heater internally wired in a 3 phase open delta configuration is unbalanced, meaning that the amperage drawn by one of the three legs is high and unequal to the other two legs. This unbalanced water heater can have a detrimental effect on a buildings power system and therefore needs to be carefully understood before you install a water heater configured for 3 phase open delta. It should be noted that the branch circuit protection (i.e. circuit breaker) servicing a 3 phase open delta water heater needs to be sized for the high amperage leg. The Hubbell model E is available up to a maximum of 12kw in 3 phase open delta wiring. Alternatively, the Hubbell model SE is a balanced 3 phase water heater, meaning that all three legs draw equal amperage. The Model SE is available up to 58kw click here details Model SE

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Custom Designed Series                                         All Products FAQs Index

Utility Rentals

How does the heat trap work?

The Vaughn water heater is constructed with a heat trap installed within the water heater’s hot water outlet connection. This device helps prevent heat from escaping through the storage tank’s hot water outlet during standby periods, resulting in improved operating efficiency. The heat trap is constructed from a specially designed bronze nipple with an internal floating ball that during standby periods of no flow settles and closes off the storage tank thereby preventing thermal conduction of hot water radiating through the hot water outlet.

Can a timer be installed on my Vaughn water heater?

Water heater timers are devices that provide automatic control of electric water heaters. They can be programmed to turn a water heater off or on at times typically set by your local utility. Your local electric utility may have in place an “Off-Peak” or Time-of-Use (TOU) rates which offer a customer the incentive to consume power during certain periods of the day. The Vaughn S and ME Models are available with various timer control options, ranging from programmable 7 day timers to utility specific devices that control the water heater.

Why is dielectric isolation so important?

The unique design of the Vaughn heat exchanger electrically isolates the heat exchanger from the tank by means of a non conductive barrier installed between the two. This provides dielectric isolation between the tank and the heat exchanger thereby eliminating electrolysis between the two due to dissimilar metals. This feature is one reason why the Vaughn indirect water heater far outlasts competitor models.

What is the average life of an electric water heater?

The most important factor related to the life expectancy of a water heater is the quality and type of storage tank. On an average the life expectancy of a glass lined electric water heater is about 10-12 years (according to the National Association of Home Builders 2007 Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components http://www.nahb.org/fileUpload_details.aspx?contentID=99359 ), compared to a cement lined electric water heater’s average life expectancy of 23-26 years (Independent study of over 25,000 installations for an Electric Utility). Of course, there are various other factors that affect longevity including pressure fluctuations, usage, water conditions, environmental conditions, etc.

What is a sacrificial anode and does a cement lined tank need one?

All water heaters constructed using a steel tank requires a lining to protect the internal steel surfaces from corrosion. Certain linings (i.e. glass and epoxy), due to their nature, have unavoidable holes and imperfections resulting in exposure of the steel tank. As a result of this deficiency, the manufacturer will install an anode rod(s) in an attempt to delay corrosion of the steel tank. An anode rod is typically made of aluminum, magnesium or zinc, is a maintenance item that requires periodic inspection and replacement, and is often times the cause of a “rotten egg” odor to your hot water. Often referred to as a sacrificial anode rod because, over time, it slowly dissolves, sacrificing itself as it is attacked by aggressive substances in the water which would otherwise attack the steel tank through the pinholes and imperfections of the glass or epoxy lining. A cement lined steel tank on the other hand does not require an anode because of the thickness and guaranteed 100% coverage of the cement lining over all internal surfaces of the steel tank. This eliminates the need for an anode rod in a cement lined water heater, resulting in a significantly longer life compared to a glass or epoxy lined water heater. For a further discussion please click on the following link Cement Lining

Why is there an upper and a lower heating element in my tank?

Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters with 30 gallon storage or more have both upper and lower heating elements in the tank, and models 20 gallon storage and less have one heating element in the tank. The purpose of having two heating elementsis to improve the recovery rating in a water heater of significant storage capacity. Sometimes referred to as a “Quick Recovery” water heater, this configuration allows the upper element to heat a much smaller volume of water (about 25% of the tank's capacity) before the lower element takes over. This provides a small amount of usable hot water quickly while you wait for the bulk of the water to heat. It is worth noting that in the standard dual element design, the upper and lower heating elements are interlocked so that only one can heat at any time, with priority to the upper element. Once the thermostat controlling the upper element is satisfied (i.e. at set point temperature) the lower element is allowed to heat. As an option, you may order your Vaughn water heater with the optional “simultaneous operation” feature which allows each element to operate independently, potentially allowing both to be on at the same time in order to increase the recovery rate of the heater.

Do I need a drain pan under my heater?

Yes, Vaughn advises that a drip pan with a proper drainage connection be installed under your water heater. In some locations drip pans are required by code and in other situations they are highly recommended, but not required. In either case, if a water heater leak or a dripping relief valve could result in property damage then a drip pan must be installed under the water heater, even when not required by code.

Do I need earthquake straps or seismic restraints?

It depends. The Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC), section 510.5 states In seismic zones 3 and 4 water heaters shall be anchored or strapped to resist horizontal displacement due to earthquake motion. Strapping shall be at points within the upper one-third (1/3) and lower one-third (1/3) of its vertical dimensions. At the lower point a minimum of four (4) inches (102mm) shall be maintained above the controls with the strapping." If the installed location is in these seismic zones then a strap/restraint system is required. Otherwise please consult with a plumbing engineer to determine the proper installation method for your water heater.

What is an Energy Factor (EF) rating?

The Energy Factor (EF) rating represents the efficiency of the water heater. The higher the EF, the more efficient the water heater unit. Vaughn Model S and ME water heaters are classified by the Department of Energy as residential water heaters and are rated by an Energy Factor (EF) ranging from 0.80 to 0.95. The higher the EF, the more the heater transfers energy to the water using less energy. Please note that the use of R values as a measure of efficiency is incomplete and does therefore does not accurately capture a water heater’s true efficiency as does the EF rating. For additional information check out the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) website at AHRI as well as the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) website at ACEEE

What is the R value of a Vaughn water heater?

Vaughn uses a blown-in polyurethane foam insulation for all cement lined water heaters and tanks up to 120 gallon capacity. This insulation has an R value of 7.2 per inch. Most Vaughn tanks have a minimum of 2 inches of insulation resulting in an R value of 14. Certain models are available either standard or as an option with 3 inch insulation and therefore have an R value of 21.

What should I know about Legionella?

Legionella is the bacteria responsible for Legionnaire’s Disease, an acute bacterial infection of the lower respiratory tract. This bacterium was first identified in 1977 by the Centers for Disease Control. Pontiac Fever is a less severe, non-pneumonia, flu-like disease that is associated with and likely caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a fairly common water bacterium and has been found to exist widely in many surface water sources including lakes, rivers, streams and ponds. It can also be found in ground water sources and some soils. At the levels found in these naturally occurring sources it typically does not pose a threat to public health. When the bacterium enters a domestic water system it can find an ideal host environment of warm water temperatures (105-115°F), stagnant water areas (isolated storage tanks and dead-end piping legs) and ample food sources (sediment, scale, deposits and biofilm). Under these conditions Legionella can rapidly colonize, forming higher concentrations that can pose the public health threat of Legionnaire’s Disease. There are many methods of controlling colonization of Legionella bacteria; a widely accepted and preferred method is to maintain the hot water system storage temperature continually at or above 140°F. Unfortunately, the elevated temperature necessary to minimize the growth of and kill Legionella bacteria has the potential to cause serious thermal shock and scalding injuries. As such, many plumbing engineers will specify that the water heater be set to maintain water temperatures at 140°F or higher to reduce the risk of Legionella, but then specify the appropriate mixing valve to ensure safe delivery of hot water to the fixtures. For a more thorough discussion of Legionella please go to here and the following link to the US Department of Labor OSHA information regarding Legionnaires’ Disease OSHA here

Can my cement lined tank be damaged during installation and handling?

Although we don’t advocate dropping our tanks, sometimes stuff happens. The Vaughn Hydrastone cement lining is a minimum of 1/2" thick (100 times thicker than a glass lined tank) and is guaranteed to uniformly cover 100% of all internal tank surfaces. In essence, the Vaughn cement lining is a tank within a tank and should have no problem withstanding the rigors of shipping and installation. A properly maintained Vaughn tank will last decades.

Why is Hydrastone Cement a better choice over glass lining?

Cement lining provides guaranteed 100% coverage with a minimum thickness of 0.5” over all internal tank surfaces. In comparison, glass lining is approximately 0.005” thick and includes imperfections, pinholes and variation in coverage thickness resulting in portions of unprotected steel tank exposed to corrosion. In an attempt to compensate, glass lined tanks include a sacrificial anode in an effort to slow down the corrosion of the tank. Cement lined tanks on the other hand do not require an anode due to the integrity of the lining. As such, a cement lined tank will far outlast a glass lined tank. For a more complete explanation of the benefits of the Vaughn cement lining please click on the following link Cement Lining

How do I prepare my water heater for long term storage?

The water heater must be stored in the orientation of intended use (vertical, horizontal). The recommended ambient air temperature range is between 50 and 105 degree F and not exceeding 65% Rh. Under no conditions should the unit be subject to freezing temperatures. The unit is intended to be stored indoors, protected from the elements. Desiccant material should be inserted into the electric control panel and heating element terminal house (if applicable). Prolonged storage will require periodic inspection of desiccant. For cement lined tanks only, place approximately 10 gallons of water in the tank before closing and sealing all openings to ensure a humid atmosphere for the lining is maintained. Cap and seal all openings and tank tappings and/or flanges. Provide the necessary protection to ensure the tank and all accessories are protected from physical contact that could result in damage. Shrink wrapping or other suitable protective plastic may be applied to the exterior. Start up and installation guidelines must be followed, with particular attention to testing of the electric heating element.

Back to Utility Rentals                                         All Products FAQs Index

Timers/Energy Controllers

What is a Vaughn Energy Controller?

The Vaughn Energy Controller (E/C) is a water heater timer that provides automatic control of an electric water heater. The E/C is a simple, yet sophisticated control.

What does the Vaughn Energy Controller look like?

The Vaughn E/C is a black box that can be attached directly to the water heater junction box or wall mounted close to the water heater.

Is the Vaughn Energy Controller programmable?

Yes, the Vaughn E/C can be programmed to turn a water heater off or on. Your local electric utility determines the program that controls when the water operates and how long the customer can override the control. Once programmed, the EC automatically controls the water heater saving energy without any worry or inconvenience to the homeowner.

How does the Vaughn Energy Controller operate?

The Vaughn Energy Controller has an “Electric Eye” that displays the status of the E/C unit and provides information on the condition of the water heater as well.

What is the function of the "Electric Eye"?

The Electric Eye displays a digital letter which describes the operating mode that the E/C timer is in at that time.

What is the Red dot next to the letters in the Electric Eye?

The red dot is a unique Power Pulse feature that not only indicates when the E/C is allowing the water heater to operate, but also when the electric elements in the water heater are on and heating. With the Power Pulse, it is easy to determine if there is a problem with the water heater, or if the water heater simply ran out of hot water.

What do the display letters mean in the Electric Eye?

Off Peak (O): Off peak means the E/C is NOT controlling the water heater. When in this mode, the E/C allows power to the water heater. The heater can operate normally, and the elements can heat the tank when the thermostat calls for heat. Note: The Power Pulse will BLINK when the elements are heating.
Peak (P): P means that the E/C IS CONTROLLING the water heater. When the heater is in this mode, the E/C interrupts power to the heater. The water heater cannot operate, and the elements cannot energize.
Customer Override (C): If you run out of hot water, you can push the Override button to tell the E/C to allow power to the water heater. How long the heater operates depends on how long the Override period is programmed for from the local utility. The Override button can only be used ONCE per day. Note: The Power Pulse will BLINK when the elements are heating.
Vacation (V): If you wish to shut off power to the water heater for an extended period of time, you can push the Vacation button. Once in Vacation mode, the E/C will stay there until the Vacation button is pressed again. This button is like a switch. If you push it once, you will shut off power to the heater. To return power to the heater, all you need to do is push the Override button again.
Error (E): E signifies that there has been a failure within the E/C. Either the time, program, or reset circuitry has detected an error during internal diagnostic checks.

What are the dimensions of the Energy Controller?

7.0" (H) x 4.75" (D) x 2.0" (D)

What voltage can be applied to the Energy Controller?

240v (Note: will operate at 208v as well)

What is the amperage rating of the relay?

The E/C has a high rated relay capable of switching loads up to 30A. so no extra relays are required.

Does the Energy Controller have Battery backup?

Yes 10 year continuous use without power.

What approvals does the Energy Controller have?

UL and CSA

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Temperature Controllers

Back to Temperature Controllers                                         All Products FAQs Index

Grid Interactive Controllers

Back to Grid Interactive Controllers                                         All Products FAQs Index

Custom Controllers

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26 Old Elm Street
P.O. Box 5431
Salisbury, MA 01952-5431
Tel: 978-462-6683
Fax: 978-462-6497

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