SOLVED! - 4500 Vs. 5500 Watt Water Heater: Insights

When the weather gets cold, securing a steady supply of water is one of the top priorities of modern homeowners. While different people often have different preferences, most agree that it’s a good idea to keep a water heater around as outside temperature drops. The market nowadays carries a wide range of models but once it comes to popularity, two lines of water heaters stand out: 4500W and 5500W. Needless to say, 4500 vs. 5500 watt water heater is one of many hotly discussed topics among those shopping for water heaters.

Rundowns Of The Water Heaters 

A.O. Smith Signature 40-Gallon Short 6-year Limited 4500-Watt Double Element Electric Water Heater

You have a hard time making up your mind between 4500W and 5500W water heaters? In that case, you have come to the right place. This article could tell you virtually all the issues that you should take into account to make a wise investment.

4500W And 5500W Water Heaters: Analyses 


Being electric models, 4500W and 5500W water heaters require electricity to work so homeowners have to prepare a stable power source for them. In addition to that, for safety reasons, people must set up a circuit that can handle the flow of electricity. Usually, a 230V 30A circuit is more than enough for both lines of water heaters. Last but not least, 4500W and 5500W water heaters accept standard storage tanks for households with capacity ranging from 50 to 80 gallons.


The distinct difference between 4500W and 5500W water heaters is the amount of energy they transfer. Thus, a 5500W water heater would heat much more water than a 4500W one in the same period of time. For instance, in one hour, 4500W water heater could heat from 18 to 25 gallons of water on average. As for 5500W water heaters, they could provide between 25 and 35 gallons of hot water to homeowners within a similar time frame.

The heating capability of 5500W water heaters comes at a price: high power consumption. That means to get the most out of a 5500W model, you have to dedicate a lot of electricity to it and strain the power grid in the process. Moreover, if you decide to add a 5500W water heater instead of a 4500W one to your house, expect a noticeable increase in utility bills. Depending on the situation, you may have to make some changes to deal with the expenses of running a 5500W water heater.

It’s worth pointing out that 5500W water heaters cost more than their 4500W counterparts. Therefore, in terms of affordability, 4500W is the winner in 4500 vs. 5500 watt water heater. If you have money to spend then there is no need to bother with affordability. On the other hand, in the case that your wallet is kind of tight, it’s best to keep an eye out for 4500W water heaters.

Rundowns On Installation Of Water Heaters 

The setup process often changes from model to model so that you should refer to instructions in the owner’s manual of your water heater. Still, if you seek guidance, it’s strongly recommended that you follow the following steps

  • Step 1: Cut the water supply

Find the shutoff valve and turn it to halt the flow of water for the time being.

  • Step 2: Turn the power off

Disconnect electricity via the circuit breaker.

  • Step 3: Position the water heater

For good measure, you should set up your water heater on a drain pan.

  • Step 4: Install the T&P valve

In case you don’t know, T&P valve would open whenever the temperature or pressure level inside the tank approaches dangerous levels. If your water heater comes without a T&P valve, buy one from the local hardware store.

  • Step 5: Set up the discharge pipe

Position the discharge pipe from the T&P valve toward the drain. In the case that there is no drain around, a bucket would do.

  • Step 6: Hook up the water

Wrap plumber tape around the thread of the hoses to minimize leakage.

  • Step 7: Install and secure the fittings

Take a moment to read the regulation of your area. Some regions demand the use of dielectric fittings to reduce the risk of corrosion between different surfaces of metal.

  • Step 8: Tighten the compression nut

Slide the compression nut and ring into the pipe and tighten everything together.

  • Step 9: Fill and flush the tank

Remove an aerator of a nearby faucet, open the hot side and see how things turn out. Assuming that you get everything right, the tank should be full when water runs out of the faucet. Wait at least three minutes to get rid of air and debris inside the tank

  • Step 10: Do the wirings, turn on power and set the temperature

Connect the water heater to the circuit to secure electricity for it. Once the wirings look good, turn on power and set the temperature for the water. Remember that it may take hours for a newly installed water heater to bring water temperature to desirable levels.

Choosing Between 4500W And 5500W Water Heaters: Suggestions 

4500 vs 5500 Watt Water Heater - Making The Right Choice - Planted Shack

It’s not like everyone lives in the same setting. Hence, homeowners tend to be at odds regarding the one that comes out on top in 4500 vs. 5500 watt water heater. That being said, if you wish to get your money’s worth, you should check out these tips and tricks

Give the power grid some thought: With preparation, the addition of electric water heaters won’t stress out the power grid of the avergaee households. Still, if your house usually runs all sorts of appliances at the same time, You should prioritize 4500W water heaters.

Consider the demand for hot water: If you don’t use a lot of hot water, feel free to settle for a 4500W water heater. However, in the case that the hot water consumption of your family is high, it’s widely advised that you go for a 5500W model.

Take utility bills into account: You have money to spend? Then you can buy whatever water heater that you want. Nonetheless, if you plan to cut down your utility bills, you should prioritize 4500W models.


Rheem-Ruud ELD40-C Commercial Electric Water Heater, 40.0 gal Tank Capacity, 208V, 4,500 W Total Watts-99141244

May I replace a 4500W water heater with a 5500W one? 

If your 4500W water heater is using a 30A breaker, you could replace it with a 5500W model at will. If the current breaker is not a 30A model, replace ir prior to setting up the new 5500W water heater.

Do electric water heaters require special maintenance?

Today’s water heaters need rather little care from people in the course of operation. In most of the cases, homeowners only have to flush their water once a year to get rid of sediment.

Where could I buy residential water heater?

Stores that deal in household hardware should carry a number of water heaters for residence. Also, it’s possible to buy water heater heaters from many online retailers such as Amazon, eBay and so on.


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