John Wood Power Vent Review and Buying Tips
(updated 2018)

John Wood power vent water heater

John Wood power vent water heaters are designed for homeowners that prefer options and flexibility when installing the unit and its venting system. This type of heaters is using an external power supply to power its elements, such as the electric blower, which further forces the exhaust gases out and moves the combustion air inside the combustion chamber.

Benefits

Power vs. Direct Vent

The power vent design allows John Wood water heaters much more flexibility than atmospheric or direct vent type. It utilizes long vent pipes, horizontally or vertically, making the unit suitable for installation in the garage, basement, even the closets. As opposed to the direct vent models, power venting with its long-run pipes doesn't require the proximity of the external wall.

High Efficiency

The power venting brings more flexibility to its owners, but when combined with the heat traps and thicker foam insulation it significantly increases the efficiency of the water heater while ensuring the reliable and durable operation.

Model review

John Wood power vent water heaters are available in several sizes and gas outputs, which makes them perfect for residential homes, from small to large hot water demands. Based on the efficiency and features these units offer, PV models are available as ProLine XE and EnviroSense.

ProLine XE models are available in four sizes, from 40 to 75 gallons, offering high energy factor of up to 0.71, advanced electronics with the self-diagnostic capability and 3-position rotatable blower for easier installation. They all use both natural and propane gas for heating not only domestic water but space heating.

All the models, except the 75-gal, are Energy Star compliant. The recovery rate of the 50-gal unit, for example, is 67 GPH and First Hour Rating 100 GPH which is higher than found on direct vent models with the same capacity.

Power venting design uses the electric blower and coaxial or two-pipe system, with the vent pipes made of cheaper PVC, CPVC or PP for added flexibility, length up to 180’ and sizes of 2”, 3” and 4”.

FVIR compatible water heaters utilize the air intake snorkel system which prevents the flammable vapors from paint, gasoline and other chemicals to enter the gas combustion chamber.

Sealed gas combustion chamber increases the safety.

The advanced gas control valve features the self-diagnostic system which makes troubleshooting simpler.

One heavy duty anode rod and TankSaver system are used for protecting the metal tank from the corrosive water effects.

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EnviroSense Power Vent

The best power vented water heaters from John Wood are coming from the EnviroSense group. This group offers only one size of 50 gallons but as opposed to standard type the model is equipped with the helical type heat exchanger, resulting in the condensing operation. The spiral shape is what increases the contact surface between the heat on one side of the pipe and water on the other, resulting in the high thermal efficiency of 94%. Other great advantages are the 76,000 BTU gas burner that is capable to deliver over 3 gallons of hot water in the continuous flow, the high recovery rate of 96 gallons, FHR of 127 gallons and reduced energy consumption.

Side connections allow recirculation for faster delivery of hot water, as well as combination heating of home space and potable water. The long venting pipes (max is 125’) offer greater flexibility.

As opposed to all above heaters, the EnviroSense models utilize reliable, long-lasting and energy-saving hot surface ignition, the diffuser dip tube for reduced lime and sediment build-up, also two commercial grade anodes for even better rust protection.

On the cons side are the short 6-year warranty and capability to run on natural gas only.

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