Rinnai Heat Pumps: Independent Review

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Note: Solar Choice is not associated with Rinnai or any heat pump brand and has no financial or other incentives to promote any product brand over another.

At a Glance: Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump Score Card 

$$$ Price: Rinnai Enviroflo heat pumps are in the mid-range of heat pump prices, with models such as the EHPS215VM costing between $3000 and $3,900.

  • Efficiency: With a high coefficient of performance (COP) of 7.22 at an ambient temperature of 32.6°C and inlet water temp of 21.1°C, the Rinnai Enviroflo heat pump is highly efficient. We estimate the  COP to be between 4.5 and 5, assuming our comparison conditions with an ambient temperature of 20°C and a water inlet temp of 15°C. We score this heat pump 4 out of 5 points for efficiency.
  • Warranty Offer: Rinnai offers warranties with 7 years on tank parts, 3 years on tank labour, and comprehensive coverage on refrigeration components. This is a solid warranty offer and as such, scores 4 points.
  • Customer Reviews: The average customer review score for Rinnai’s Enviroflo series is 2.8, which indicates a mixed level of satisfaction from customers. Based on real user experiences, this score indicates that although this product may have some good aspects, there are still a lot of areas that may need improvement. Points awarded: 2.
  • Functionality: Rinnai heat pumps are equipped with features like  auto-restart, hard water anode, and Wi-Fi timer functionality on selected models. They also operate well in a wide range of temperatures, from -1°C to 45°C. These features, combined with the environmentally friendly R290 refrigerant, provide excellent functionality. Score: 4 points.

Please note that the Solar Choice score card reflects our opinions only. Customers are encouraged to do their own research.

Uncover essential details in the comprehensive guide below and find out what you need to know before you buy.

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Rinnai Australia Company Background

The primary business of Japan-based Rinnai Australia Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Rinnai Corporation, is the heating and hot water sector. The company was founded more than 50 years ago and is well-known throughout Australia for its diverse array of heating solutions and assortment of hot water systems.

The company manufactures some of its products locally in Victoria Australia, where it operates three manufacturing facilities. These sites also serve as centers for research and development. Rinnai Australia employs approximately 500 staff and engages in extensive sales and distribution across the nation.

Rinnai’s product suite features well-known brands such as Rinnai Infinity, Hotflo, Energysaver, and Enviroflo, among others.  The company is known for providing products that are able to cater to a wide range of consumer needs, from basic hot water provision to sophisticated climate control solutions

Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump Product Range

The Rinnai Enviroflo heat pump range includes a large selection of models & variants designed to cater to different household sizes, functionality and water usage requirements.

Focus
The series we focus on is the more popular VM and VMH model types, each available in two tank sizes: 250L and 315L.

Key Difference:

The VMH models distinguish themselves with the inclusion of a hard water anode. Hard water contains high levels of calcium and magnesium, which can lead to scale buildup and reduce the efficiency and lifespan of water heating systems. Hard water anodes are designed to protect the tank and system components from these effects, thereby enhancing durability in such environments.

ModelSeriesDescriptionCapacity (L)FeaturesSuitable For
EHPA250VMVM SeriesEnviroflo Electric Heat Pump250Standard model, auto-disinfection, integrated control system, quiet operation <48 dB, built-in anti-frost, R290 refrigerantUp to 5 people, 2 bathrooms, 4 bedrooms
EHPA250VMHVMH SeriesEnviroflo Electric Heat Pump with Hard Water Anode250Enhanced for hard water, includes all standard features of VM seriesUp to 5 people, 2 bathrooms, 4 bedrooms
EHPA315VMVM SeriesEnviroflo Electric Heat Pump315Larger capacity, includes all standard features of VM series, suitable for larger householdsUp to 7 people, 3 bathrooms, 5 bedrooms
EHPA315VMHVMH SeriesEnviroflo Electric Heat Pump with Hard Water Anode315Optimized for hard water conditions, larger capacity, includes all VM series featuresUp to 7 people, 3 bathrooms, 5 bedrooms
EHPT180VMA SeriesEnviroflo A Series Electric Heat Pump180Optimized for smaller households, includes basic features of energy efficiency and adaptability to climateSmall to medium households
EHPS215VMB SeriesEnviroflo B Series Electric Heat Pump215Medium capacity, adaptable for all climates, Wi-Fi timer, defrost control, quiet operation, auto disinfection, 46 dB noise level, R290 refrigerantMedium households
EHPS265VMTE SeriesEnviroflo E Series Electric Heat Pump265High energy efficiency, Wi-Fi timer function, designed for high-performance, adaptable across various climates, quiet operation, auto disinfectionLarge households or high usage areas

Explanation of Series Variant

  • VM Series: Standard models that provide the essentials needed for efficiency and capacity, suitable for average-sized homes.
  • VMH Series: Similar to VM but specifically enhanced for areas with hard water, helping to extend the lifespan of the system under such conditions.
  • A Series: Targeted at smaller households or those with lower hot water demand. Typically more compact and energy-efficient for its size.
  • B Series: Offers medium capacity with additional features like Wi-Fi timers and adaptability to a broader range of climates, making it versatile for varied environmental conditions.

While  the average consumer can become confused or overwhelmed by this wide array of product variations, it allows Rinnai to segment the market, providing options that meet specific consumer needs without a one-size-fits-all approach. This differentiation could also be a strategy to cover a wider range of price points, making heat pumps accessible to a broader customer base while addressing the particular technical and capacity requirements across different climates and household sizes.

Key Features of Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump

Energy Efficiency: Rinnai Enviroflo heat pumps, available in models VM and VMH, feature advanced energy-saving technology that utilizes a mere 1 kW of power input to deliver 4 kW of heating energy. This high efficiency is achieved using R290 refrigerant, known for its low environmental impact and excellent thermodynamic performance.

Operational Adaptability: Designed to operate efficiently in a wide range of temperatures, from -5°C to 45°C, the Enviroflo series includes a built-in anti-frost system to protect the condenser in colder climates, ensuring consistent operation regardless of external temperature.

Hard Water Compatibility: The ‘VMH’ models, such as the EHPA250VMH are specifically equipped with hard water anodes to tackle the challenges posed by hard water environments. Hard water contains high levels of calcium and magnesium, which can lead to mineral buildup and corrosion in heating systems. The hard water anodes in these models help to mitigate these effects, thereby extending the unit’s lifespan.

Safety and Maintenance Features: Each model is equipped with an auto disinfection feature to prevent the growth of legionella bacteria, a crucial safety feature for maintaining water quality. Additionally, the system automatically restarts after power outages, restoring settings without user intervention.

How Much Does Rinnai Heat Pump Cost?

The cost of Rinnai heat pumps varies based on the model and its features. Below is the price range for two of Rinnai’s models, the EHPS215VM and EHPA315VM. These prices are gathered from various online sources and represent a range typically seen in the Australian market. Australian consumers will typically pay higher prices for additional functionality, such as the hard water anode (VMH) variants.

ModelPrice Range (AUD)
EHPS215VM$2,800 – $3,900
EHPA315VM$3,400 – $4,100

Notes on Pricing:

  • Prices are indicative and subject to change based on retailer, location, and any applicable promotions or discounts.
  • The prices listed exclude costs related to freight, installation, and any rebates that might apply.
  • Rebates and incentives such as Small-scale Technology Certificates (STCs) can significantly reduce the upfront cost of purchasing and installing these heat pumps, depending on the installation location.

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Rinnai Warranty Terms

Rinnai offers a tiered warranty for its electric heat pump water heaters, specifically designed for domestic users. Here are the details of the coverage for various components:

ComponentSeriesWarranty DurationCoverage
TankEHPA7 yearsParts only
TankEHPS, EHPT5 yearsParts only
Refrigeration ComponentsAll series3 yearsParts and Labour
Other ComponentsAll series1 yearParts and Labour
Labour for TankAll series3 yearsLabour only
Read Rinnai full warranty T&Cs here.
  • Rinnai covers reasonable costs associated with legitimate warranty claims, including service calls by an authorised Rinnai service provider.

Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump: Pros and Cons

ProsCons
Price – Priced between $2,800 and $3,900, it offers mid-range affordability with solid range of key features.Customer Reviews – Mixed feedback with an average score of 2.8, suggests significant areas for improvement based on actual user experiences.
Efficiency – High COP of 7.22 at 32.6°C; estimated at 4.9 at 20°C, which is efficient for Australian climates.Noise – With a rated noise level of 48db it is on the noisier side of heat pump options. It is recommended to keep this unit away from entertaining areas and open windows. 
Warranty – Strong warranty terms with 7 years on tank parts and comprehensive coverage on refrigeration components.

Verdict: Are Rinnai Heat Pumps Worth It?

The Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump, with its mid-range cost and strong warranty coverage, is an appealing alternative for people looking for energy-efficient water heating  that doesn’t blow the budget. Its COP at higher ambient temperatures is exceptional, however, it is crucial to note that the COP will decrease at the lower average ambient temperature of 20°C found in many Australian climates.

While the warranty is comprehensive, covering major components for up to 7 years, mixed user feedback (average score of 2.8) raises concerns regarding dependability and consumer happiness. Potential buyers should carefully consider these reviews, as they indicate that, while the product has numerous advantages, it may not always satisfy everyone’s expectations.

Furthermore, features like Wi-Fi connectivity and wide operating temperature ranges make the Rinnai heat Pump flexible to a variety of settings and preferences, increasing its appeal to a tech-savvy customers. However, the actual user experience and long-term performance reported by customers will be essential in establishing its value.

In conclusion, the Rinnai Enviroflo Heat Pump could be an excellent option for people looking for energy efficiency and strong warranty coverage at a reasonable price. However, potential customers should proceed with caution and consider the mixed customer feedback when determining whether this model meets their unique needs and expectations.

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Technical Specifications

Specification CategorySpecification Detail
Model VariantsEHPA250VMA, EHPA250VMAH, EHPA315VMA, EHPA315VMAH
Capacity Options250 liters, 315 liters
DimensionsDiameter: 627 mm<br>Height: 1847 mm (250L), 2134 mm (315L)
Empty Weight112 kg (250L), 132 kg (315L)
Noise Level48 dB(A)
Ambient Temperature Range-1°C to 45°C
Ingress Protection RatingIP24
Water Pressure CompatibilityMaximum: 1000 kPa
Heating Element Rated Input2.4 kW (Factory Wired)
Refrigeration Module Rated Input1.0 kW (Factory Wired)
Total Rated Power Input3.4 kW (To be wired by installer)
Maximum Energy Output4.29 kW
Electrical SpecificationsPower Supply: 240 V AC, 50Hz<br>Current: 15 A
Refrigerant Type and QuantityR290, 270 grams
Coefficient of Performance (COP)7.22 at 32.6°C Ambient and 21.1°C cold water inlet
Heating Capacity5.2 kW at 32.6°C Ambient and 21.1°C cold water inlet
Warranty DetailsTank parts: 7 years<br>Cylinder labor: 3 years<br>Refrigeration components (parts and labor): 3 years<br>Other components (parts and labor): 1 year
Installation FeaturesECV Fitted, Recommended PLV pressure rating: 500 kPa
Safety FeaturesPTR Valve Connection: ISO 7.1 ¾” RP
Energy EfficiencyUses up to 75% less energy compared to standard electric storage tanks
Environmental ImpactUtilizes R290 refrigerant with a low GWP of 0.02
Additional FunctionalitiesWi-Fi timer function (on selected models), Auto disinfection, Auto restart function
Certifications and ComplianceMeets ISO 7.1 standards for water connections

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James Shand