Bradford White Hot
Water Heaters Review

Review of Extra Recovery and Energy Saver models with Defender Safety System

Bradford White hot water heaters from Extra Recovery series, are designed as Energy Saver heaters, with atmospheric venting, with and without Defender Safety System. These gas-powered water heaters are built for residential and light duty commercial use, potable water heating and space heating.

Extra Recovery simply means more hot water for your shower, in less time, and when comparing it to standard gas models. No more waiting for hot water and dealing with models with a low recovery rates.

Example: If we compare two Bradford White hot water heaters, Energy Saver models, with Defender System, 50-gal. tank size, and recovery rise 90 F, Extra Recovery model provides 69-gallon per hour, while the standard model up to 53 GPH. That is 16 gallons of hot water more per hour for Extra Recovery models.



There are three Bradford White hot water heaters from Extra Recovery models with Defender System, built in three standard sizes, 40, 48 and 65-gallon capacities, providing from 40,000 to 65,000 BTU. 75-gallon tank capacity heater is built without Defender System and provides 76,000 BTU.

All Bradford White models are equipped with FVIR or Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant system, Hydrojet Total Performance System and ICON system.

There are also two atmospheric vent, high performance and high recovery Energy Saver models.

By checking out their features you will see that the first hour delivery on Bradford White GX155S6BN, 55-gallon model, is amazing 200 gallons and on 25-gallon model, Bradford White GX225S6BN, great 155 gallons, which is much higher than the standard model type.

Thanks to the high input combustion system and helical fin flue they are ideal for hot tubs, and larger homes as they provide enough hot water, and fast.

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The Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant System features:

  • Advanced flame arrestor

  • Re-settable Thermal Switch

  • Piezo igniter

  • Sight window

The calibrated multipurpose thermal switch is used to recognize when flame arrestor stops the flammable vapors from traveling backwards and its ignition outside the chamber; it shuts down the pilot and main burner. The advanced flame arrestor uses ScreenLok Technology to block the accidental fire.

Another dangerous situation is when the airflow is restricted by lint, dust or oil accumulation on the arrestor plate. This switch then deactivates the burner and pilot flame.

Pilot flame and spark action can be checked thru the sight glass, located on the inner door of the water heater.

Hydrojet Total Performance System helps in reducing sediment build-up. It is using hydro-jets near the bottom of the dip tube to create turbulence in water and therefore, prevent deposits at the bottom of the tank.

Bradford White hot water heaters, Extra Recovery models, are equipped with the ICON system, designed for the enhanced performance and intelligent operation.

Bradford White uses built-in piezo igniter to light the fire and intelligent gas control with millivolt powered technology to convert heat energy from pilot flame into electrical energy, needed for gas valve and microprocessor. That means no external electricity is needed.

Thanks to the Icon System, first-hour delivery is improved and advanced temperature control system provides consistent and accurate hot water temperature control, so temperature fluctuation is decreased and "cold water sandwiches" during the shower are reduced.

If having any problem with the operation of the Bradford White water heater, intelligent diagnostics with the LED light provides diagnostic codes for easier water heater troubleshooting.

Vitraglas Lining provides superior rust protection from the aggressive water effect, thanks to the exclusively enamel formula that is fused to the steel tank surface.

Magnesium anode rod is also used to protect the metal tank from corrosion.

To keep efficiency of the water heater high and reduce energy waste, Bradford White is using heat traps and 2" foam insulation.

Note: Bradford White hot water heaters, gas fired, are factory set to work on natural gas. Propane water heaters are equipped with titanium stainless steel burner.

Note: Bradford White water heater is not for use in mobile homes.


High Recovery models are more expensive than standard models but their power is almost double and first hour delivery much better. Bradford White GX155S6BN is selling for $1390 while standard atmospheric Enery Saver model Bradford White MI5036FBN for $460. See the prices here.

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(All pictures are courtesy of Bradford White)