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A. O. Smith Water Heaters
Overall Satisfaction Rating
2.04/5
  • 5 stars
    12
  • 4 stars
    6
  • 3 stars
    0
  • 2 stars
    1
  • 1 stars
    36
Based on 55 ratings submitted in the last yearSHOW RATING DISTRIBUTION

A. O. Smith Water Heaters

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Last updated: Feb. 23, 2018

433 A. O. Smith Water Heaters Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 23, 2018

My experience with this company is that they do not listen to their customers when explaining an issue. From the first contact to the highest level in leadership they state a prerecorded speech at you regardless if you are speaking facts. They are all programmed to say the same thing. They will not listen to you as an individual customer. Case in point is with their warranty. Example my electric water heater had a six year warranty and was replaced after four years because of a manufacturing defect. The one that is installed as a replacement has now failed for the same problem but is now out of warranty. The warranty is not reset. You just have the remainder of the first installed. There is no way do they understand why this is unfair practice to the customer.

From bottom up they just repeat their same speech. I wonder what the CEO would say about this? They will not let your concerns be known to that level. "OUT OF WARRANTY, JUST BUY A NEW ONE". Oh, by the way, one of their escalation people hung up on me when I ask to speak with his supervisor. Rude and disrespectful! I managed to reach six levels and that was as far as I could go. BAD BUSINESS PRACTICES.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 26, 2018

Bought a new A O Smith 50 gallon electric water heater from Lowe’s. One day after installation no hot water. Contacted Lowe’s and they told me that once it’s installed it is YOURS. Called company they said, "Sorry for your inconvenience." After 2 more calls finally got a RA number for me to call repair technician. Supposedly will be at my house next week. Till then no hot water. Do not buy AO Smith water heater!!!

7 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 19, 2018

This AO Smith water heater came with the newly built house by Pulte. We moved-in Jan-2013 and water heater broke on Christmas eve 2016 (just broke and the entire garage was flooded). We called the number which was given and they charged me $400 labor to change to a new unit which was covered under warranty. I paid extra $125 to purchase 7 yrs additional warranty which was a huge mistake. Now the new unit is leaking from the bottom and I have to pay $450 labor to change it again. If you are ready to spend $450~$550 every year labor charge, then you can buy this. Please don't ever buy this product.

7 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 19, 2018

I purchased an AO Smith 40 gallon electric water heater June of 2017 and had it installed. It is located in a closet in a hallway next to the master bedroom. After a little while I started to notice that I could hear the heater running with the door to the closet closed. It was even louder when I opened the door. I contacted their customer support folks and explained the problem and that I never heard the previous heater running. They did some checking and said that they didn't know why it was making noise but that they would give me a voucher to go and get two new heating elements to install.

They then proceeded to tell me how easy it was to turn off the water, drain the water heater, disconnect the 240 volt wiring to the heater, disconnect the heating elements and remove them and then install the new ones. After that I had to reconnect the 240 volt wiring. Now I'm no hot water heater repair person or an electrician. I do know that 240 volts is something the average person has no business messing around with. It will kill you if you don't know what you're doing. This heater has a 9 year warranty. So why are these people telling me to fix this? I am not happy with this company or their product. And definitely not happy with their solution to the problem.

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5 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 15, 2018

I had an A.O. Smith hot water heater installed in 2012. I have had almost constant trouble. Needed replaced vent motor and gas control in 1/15. Replaced the pressure switch in 6/17. Had to unclog the vacuum port on 10/17 and again today 1/18 the vacuum port needed to be unclogged, again. I talked to customer service and they said there was nothing they can do about the labor charges because no longer under warranty. Seriously. Pretty poor customer service response for a 5 year old machine. I will never get another A.O. Smith product.

4 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 9, 2018

Installed a ATI-110 non-condensing unit in a customer's home a year and half ago. All of A.O. Smith's tankless heater have "supposive" freeze protection. This is stated right in their book. Something failed in the unit. I know this because I smelled electrical burning when I went to the home. The heat exchanger froze and split. Called the company, they didn't care. All they said is, "It froze, it's not our problem". Asked if we paid to put a new heat exchanger in and found other problems would they cover the parts under warranty. They said "no". Now me and my customer have to split the cost for a new unit and my free time to install it. My company will never install another A.O.Smith products in any of our projects ever again.

7 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2018

Only 2 years old and gas line already went bad. My plumbing and heating guy says he has to replace these all the time. Not like the older heaters that would last up to 20 years+ with minimal (if any) maintenance. Honeywell supposedly makes these gas lines.

3 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2018

I bought this AO Smith 40 gal hot water heater from Lowe's in October because at the time my other unit was 15 years old. Upon installing it, the heater worked fine until we had some wind from a storm come through. I woke up to find I had no hot water and after doing a little consultation with a rep from Lowe's he said it's very common and told me how to reset the pilot light, which is what went out from the wind. Once it was reset it worked fine again for a couple days and then went out again. Then it started going out several times a day even when there was no wind.

No big deal, I call Lowe's and tell them I would like to return the unit but I obviously can't return the unit until I get another one installed. I opted for a tankless system & had them install the new system. Lowe's said once I am ready to return the unit, to call the number on the side of the tank. Once I called the number on the tank, a representative from AO Smith told me they would not give me a return number because they didn't send out a service technician to fix the unit. I was not made aware this was even their procedure by anyone, including Lowe's. I asked to speak to a manager and was placed on hold and upon returning to the phone, it was the same person I had originally spoke to. He again refused to issue a return number. I still have yet to hear from a manager. I will not ever buy another unit from this company! Absolutely awful customer service and product!

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2 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2018

I currently have a 3 year old AO Smith 80 gallon water heater in my home that is still under warranty until 2020. On 12-06-17 this AO Smith water heater would not heat my water. I called AO Smith about getting this water heater serviced. They told me to call my local service company so, then I did. I call our local service company and they had to install 5 parts. This AO Smith water heater needed two thermostats, two heating elements, and one rod, which may I add that in only 3 years of use was severely corroded. I paid the total bill of $513.00 and submitted it to AO Smith as instructed. As of this date (1-08-18) AO SMITH WILL NOT REIMBURSE ME ($513) TO HAVE THEIR WATER HEATER WHICH IS UNDER WARRANTY REPAIRED.

AO Smith keeps making excuses why they do not have to pay for my water heater that is registered and under warranty. In my opinion, AO Smith is committing some kind of consumer fraud by offering a 5 year warranty and then not standing by their sub-standard products that they sell. That said, I have had 5 water heaters in five homes in my life and, not one of the other brand water heaters ever broke within a 15-20 year period. If AO Smith thinks they build a good product, they should stand by what they. What good is a warranty if AO Smith just ignores responsibility as the manufacturer???

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7 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 5, 2018

We have had our A.O. Smith 50 gal Electric HW Heater since March of 2013. Today is Jan 5, 2018. After many years of extremely high electric bills, we finally figured out the cause was this faulty HW heater. It surged and spiked our power every 3-5 minutes we deduced after doing extensive breaker testing this week. It was not the wiring. It was the HW heater itself. We have installed a new Rheem 50 gal electric HW heater and our electric usage has returned to normal. This cost us several thousands of dollars over the years before we figured it out. I just want others to know of this problem in case they may have the same issues. Our utility company is working with us to refund NBU "Non Benefit of Use" money and we will be looking into what we can recover from A.O. Smith. Hope this will help someone else.

12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 14, 2017

Hello. I have a A. O. Smith 50 Gal Gas Water Heater. I personally installed it in 1990. The only thing that I had to do is replace the thermocouple once. It has never leaked or had any other problems. This is probably unheard of but true. 27 years and still no problems. I am going to replace it soon only because of its age. True story. I don't know if the new A.O. Smith Water Heaters are as good as the one I have, but I will buy another of the same.

10 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 9, 2017

My parents have been visited by a sales company who made initial contact through a phone call during the day. Next a visit and pressure to sign up for a Little Magic Box hot water system. Basically a new boiler and box with a panel outside which will make their hot water – and cost the same as a new car!!I have called and cancelled any orders – at which they tried to offer me a further discount!! This is just high pressure sales at its worst. https://www.magicboxinternational.com/

8 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 30, 2017

I bought AO Smith 25l geyser a week back and nobody has come to install it yet. Every day I call up customer care and they guarantee that somebody will come today... but till now nobody has come. I have also mailed my problem but still no response. This is the worst service I have experienced from any company. I could not even imagine that any company can be so pathetic with their service. I feel like returning my product and saving myself from any further torture by this company...

8 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 18, 2017

I bought an A. O. 40 gal water heater and have had nothing but problems. During installation the elements went out but were not covered under warranty. They said the tank weren’t filled enough before applying power. Even though the plug didn't arrive until an hour after tank was filled. They have this written in their manual that you can’t see until you leave the store and Lowe’s said once it’s out the door it’s your problem. I’ve installed 5 Rheem 40 gal. elec. water heaters with never a problem and they provide the water lines. Went with this for size, what a mistake. Next time I’ll save time and money and knock out the wall. But every person I see buying this company’s product will hear my story! Obviously Lowe’s has no confidence in this products reliability and I'm sure it because they know the attempted return rate and poor customer support must be making a large profit margin!

25 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 14, 2017

I have ordered a water geyser from A.O. Smith website, to which I paid beforehand. It's been a month I haven't received any information related to my product. No tracking details, no response to my calls or messages. How I'm supposed to get my money back from these cheaters. Please let me know if there's a way out.

9 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2017

After only four years my AO Smith (State Water Heater) had a massive leak that caused extensive water damage in my home. Company refused to take responsibility for damage even though the plumber who replaced the water heater spoke with them and confirmed the bottom had rusted out of the unit. They require that the complete unit be shipped back to them which is absurd. Just a way to avoid liability. Many other brands out there with higher quality and more equitable business practices.

23 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2017

Brought 50 gallon water heater in new house in October 27, 2011. October 12, 2017 water heater stopped working. Called Lowe's in Dallas who told us to call A.O. Smith.A. O Smith told us to call one of their contracted plumbers. An old guy from Bartex shows up October 16, 2017 and stays 10 minutes and says he needs to order a part. Same guy from Bartex shows up October 23, 2017 and says the heater is leaking and we need a new unit.

Whatever we complain to A.O. Smith they refer us back to Bartex. So I call and plea with Bartex they we have been without hot water for almost 2 weeks and the rep of Bartex promises she will send a ticket to Lowe's to get a free replacement and pay $800 for installation! A few hours she leaves message on my cellphone that they won't be able to replace it after all because this heater was a replacement in 2010 even though we have a warranty until October 27, 2017 and today is October 25, 2017. I pray for you A.O. Smith because you guys are crooks and liars.

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22 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 20, 2017

This company's water heaters are garbage. When building a new home do not let the builder put one of these in. It didn't even last 3 years... blew up out the top and water flooded everywhere. It wasn't just mine... 3 neighbors had the same problem... all within a few months of each other.

28 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 4, 2017

I would like everyone to know about State Water heaters whose parent company is A. O. Smith. I had to have my third State Water heater replaced in the last 13 years in a house that was new when I bought it. Two were under warranty and I had to pay labor to have them replaced. The last replacement was under warranty but the representative at the company made the plumber cut the lines and put other connections into the heater before they could replace the heater. I had to pay $177 labor for this extra work and State will not pay this bill. They keep saying, "This is protocol."

20 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 26, 2017

Installed by professional plumbers in Dec 2014. Heater leaked and was replace July 1 2016. Told by installers that the company 5 yr warranty reverts back to the first installation! It is Sept. 26 2017 today. As I write this the water heater is being replaced again for the same leakage! Again I am told that the warranty reverts back to 2014. 2 water heaters in less than 3 years? Something isn't right! According to the plumbers the company blames the water! I have a functioning water softener.

This brand of water heater was put in as part of a renovation. It's the same water supply that other heaters have used that last 10 to 20 years or more (same family home since 1960)! With the 2014 renovation all pipes etc were replaced with new ones! It appears that the quality of this AO Smith water heater is poor! Why else would they not update the warranty. Again 2 water heaters in less than 3 years?

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31 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Sept. 1, 2017

A customer of our had a defective water A.O. Smith Water heater GCVL 40 300 that was installed in 2013. It was leaking at the bottom and had a defective control valve. I picked the replacement up GCRL 40 400. It is 2 inches larger and very hard to install. We have to take door facing off and get it put in filled up. And the control valve is bad. Spend close to a hour troubleshooting with someone on the phone. And it will not light. There is no control valve in town. A.O. Smith wants the customer to go over a holiday weekend with out hot water. We snatched it out and took it back. When something is defective upon installation no matter what the reason it should be replaced.

38 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 17, 2017

I wanted to voice my opinion and dissatisfaction with A.O. Smith. In December 2011 we had an A O Smith hot water heater installed. Fast forward to 8/2017 (5 yrs 8 mo.) The hot water heater is leaking. We have a professional come out and say it needs to be replaced. Since our hot water heater is less than 6 yrs we call A O Smith (it's written on our tank that the hot water heater is under warranty). The 1st rep. gives us a claim # and says we will be reimbursed for the hot water but not labor. Ok cool. Something is better than nothing.

We had to call back to see what we needed to submit along with the claim number to be reimbursed and are told that we had to replace it with something from an A O Smith distributor. It's a Saturday... The company who replaced it replaced it with what they had. To offer a warranty but have customers wait or have to jump thru hoops to take advantage of it is sad to me. Maybe if it was properly explained to us we would have waited and found an A O Smith distributor to replace the hot water heater if we were properly informed. Claim #**.

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31 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 15, 2017

I wrote a negative review about A.O. Smith Water Heater without checking further about the charges. The warranty was covered, however; the charges were from the plumbing company that were passed on to me, not from A. O. Smith. That will teach me to research further information before making a statement about a company. The addition fee was for an exchange of a water heater. Sorry for statements made earlier against A. O. Smith.

31 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 8, 2017

We just installed a A.O. Smith hot water heater (40 gal. electric) in our home. It was very easy to install. It only took 20 minutes. No plumber needed. We only paid $219 for it at Lowe's. It was on sale. It works so much better than my last one which is a Whirlpool. The bottom rusted and sprung a leak. It flooded my whole master bathroom! Only had it 4 years. Maybe 5??? Not sure... But the Smith I installed 2 days ago is great. It heated the water up very fast. I'd say about 10 or 15 minutes wow!!! Plus it's a lot hotter than the last one too. I have heard nothing but good comments about A.O. Smith Water Heaters.

24 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 26, 2017

I bought 3 A.O. Smith water heaters that were installed in 2006 when I built my home. In December of 2011 one of them rusted out and started leaking out the bottom. Fortunately, I had a custom pan made for them with tall sides and large volume in case of this problem. The leaking unit needed to be replaced. So I called a plumber and had them get a replacement unit. While they did replace the unit under warranty, I had to pay $225 to have a plumber install it.

Fast forward to July 2017 and the new water heater that replaced the original failed unit now has a problem. The gas regulator valve has failed. I call an A.O. Smith distributor because it should be in warranty and they tell me that it is in warranty until November of 2017, but that I must get clearance and a release number from A.O. Smith warranty department before I can get the part. So now I have been without a water heater for 2 days and I call A.O. Smith and they have me give them all the info off the water heater. I tell her that the distributor has told me the unit is in warranty until November of 2017. Seems like it should have gone until December or January since that was when it was installed but whatever.

The rep tells me that I have to test it with a Digital Multimeter to see if the millivolts are above 350 on the sensor. Every good home owner has a Digital Multimeter on hand for such occurrences. If you don't then you will now be out a service charge for an electrician to come out and do the reading for you or go purchase one like I did. Anyway, after purchasing one at Home Depot, I take the reading and it is well above 350 millivolts. So I call the customer service department back and get the same representative. She says that she will look it up to see if it is in warranty. I am sorry, but she should have done that before making me jump thru hoops to test this part!!!

She now comes back and says that they won't cover it because they don't warranty the new replacement water heater. It only carries the remainder of the warranty from the original water heater that was installed in 2006. So they will not warranty a NEW unit that was installed by a professional plumber to replace a FAILED unit. WOW! What a company. What a product! A $700 plus water heater doesn't last even 6 years.

So now I am out $39.12 for the Digital Multimeter, $170.66 for the new gas valve (the supplier was nice enough to give me the plumber's price for the part, it would have been more), and $100 for my plumber to install it for a grand total of $309.78. Not to mention all the time involved tracking the part down, running out to get the part, and lost time without hot water. When I was at the distributor picking up the part, he asked me for the serial number and model for the water heater. I gave it to him and asked if this was a common problem.

He said, "Oh yes! We practically have the part number memorized because we have to sell them so often. We have 24 in stock." I have also had other issues with the other 2 water heaters. The pilot light and gas valve have gone out on one of the other units and it had to be replaced. I would highly recommend that you do not purchase A.O. Smith water heaters. They are a crappy and do not last, and customer service is bad.

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54 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 20, 2017

Built a new home in 2014, builder put in a A. O. Smith hybrid water heater. I noticed rust down at the bottom ring over a year ago. I never noticed water leaking on my garage floor until recently. I called A O Smith who told me to call my Favorite plumber, they had no one in this area. After talking to the person on the phone for a while, he had me shut off the hybrid system to find out where the water is leaking from. I did, now I know the heat pump part of the unit is leaking. Three years old and leaks water. Not sure what I am going to do, it does work in regular mode. I am not paying for a repair not worth it. For those of you considering a hybrid I would think twice or certainly not a AO Smith. The cost difference between a regular and a hybrid is big. Pays for lots of electricity!! The pay back can't be there if you have to repair or replace in three years.

36 people found this review helpful
Original review: July 17, 2017

I am writing to your company to express my utmost dissatisfaction with your service and your product. Recently, we purchased a 50-gallon, electric A.O. Smith Signature Series water heater from Lowe's in Brandon, Florida. After properly installing the heater, we soon realized that we did not have hot water. We waited, but no hot water. After speaking with a representative on the phone, we were informed that it was our responsibility to test the heater's electrical voltage and element levels. Consequently, we had to purchase a digital multi-meter at our expense, only to find that the element levels produced no reading. The representative provided an authorization and directed us to retrieve new element gaskets from Lowe's, who informed us that we did not follow the proper procedure, that your company was supposed to call them to confirm the authorization.

After purchasing the element gaskets with our money, we removed the existing gaskets and soon realized why the heater failed to produce hit water. One of the elements was severely rusted and had deposit build-up and was clearly used. Nevertheless, we replaced the elements and the heater began to produce hot water. Within hours, however, the heater began leaking from the element gaskets, despite the fact that we had tightened them and re-tightened them using a gasket wrench. The leaking continued, with the water containing rust emanating from inside the heater. The entire situation made us question whether this heater was in fact used and placed back in a box, even though we paid full retail price.

After speaking with another representative from your company without resolve (we were told they would discount $100 if we hired a contractor and that's all they could do), we emptied the heater and returned it to Lowe's. It goes without saying that we took our money elsewhere and bought a different brand of heater from a different company at a different home improvement store. The entire ordeal really should have been a simple fix; we install a new heater and it works properly. But instead, we dealt with days of stress and aggravation with little help from your company.

We thought perhaps, maybe, we were just unlucky and by some chance got a bad unit, but after reading online reviews on ConsumerAffairs, we learned that your company's products consistently received the lowest ratings, and customers warned others not to purchase your water heaters after they leaked and failed to work properly. We believe that what comes around, goes around, and eventually your company's reputation will speak so loudly (and poorly), that you will be hard-pressed to find customers. You can be assured that we will tell our friends, family, and associates about our experience with your company.

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40 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 14, 2017

It was a bright sunny day. I went to check on my water heater and it works great. It came with the new house I bought. It was installed sometime during construction. I watched the contractors install one in another new house. They first put it on a platform, then hooked the inlet and outlet water lines. An electrician came the next day and completed the wiring. The customer service was great. When it wasn't heating right, they found a bad temperature controller and changed it. This happened 2 days after I moved in. There was no charge as it was under warranty. I have had it for 8 years.

It makes plenty of hot water and the recovery time is really fast, but I wish it didn't stay so warm on the outside. I finally put one of those energy blankets around it and it is not hot to the touch anymore. Also, I did have to change one of the thermocouples because it was giving a negative reading. The part only cost six dollars at Lowe's. I had to drain the tank but it still was an easy job. I am glad it was an AO Smith. I have heard of them from friends and they all like them, no breakdowns and no problems. I have never had such a good water heater. I have had 2 others in the past in 2 other houses and they both gave me problems.

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12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 13, 2017

The price of the hot water heater was good but otherwise it was the brand the plumber carried and so we bought it. The plumber installed the water heater and it went well. The old water heater was difficulty to uninstall. Our plumber is no less ne'er in business which is a shame because he was good. The hot water heater is of excellent quality and value and works just fine. It delivered hot water all the time. We like the water heater overall and we've had good luck with it.

15 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 12, 2017

Smith water heater was about 12 years old and reliable. It was in our house when we purchased the house. We had a home inspection before we purchased our house and he discovered the noise in the water heater. We waited awhile thinking the noise in the heater would affect the temperature of the water but the heater was not heating the water to our desired temp.

Smith water heater was eventually replaced by a new water heater by Westinghouse a couple months ago. The original date of purchase was written right on the tank which made the replacement easier knowing the actual age of the heater. The new water heater was recommended by our handyman who is familiar with the various brands of water heaters and he felt this new one was a better fit for our house. This new heater is more efficient and does the job it is supposed to do. The old water heater, A O Smith, was aged and not working reliably. We were afraid it would develop a leak or the bottom give out. It would have been nice not to have had to do the replacement as it was an added expense.

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5 people found this review helpful

A. O. Smith expert review by ConsumerAffairs

Sold exclusively by plumbing wholesalers and plumbing contractors, A. O. Smith offers a broad range of residential and commercial water heaters, boilers and storage tanks. They have delivered hot water solutions to consumers for over 70 years.

  • Types: A. O. Smith offers a wide range of residential and commercial water heaters. People looking for a residential water heater can choose from multiple options including gas, electric, tankless, hybrid or solar. The gas units range in capacity from 30-98 gallons while electric units range in capacity from 19.9-80 gallons.

  • Remote monitoring: iCOMM Elite is A. O. Smith’s remote monitoring technology for commercial water heaters. It allows them to interact with, monitor and manage commercial water heaters. This minimizes down time for repairs which lessens the time a business is without hot water.

  • Vertex water heater: The Vertex water heater was designed by A. O. Smith to have a lower manufacturing cost and save consumers a significant amount of money in energy costs. It comes in a 50-gallon power-direct vent model and a 75-gallon power-direct vent model. It has improved thermal efficiency and is easily installed.

  • Product selector tool: For consumers unsure of which water heater to buy, A. O. Smith provides an interactive tool to help consumers pick the right unit. By answering a few simple questions, a list of units with prices is generated.

  • Product support: Consumers can find a product support tool online in case they need product manuals, spec sheets or catalogs. If the product name or model number is unknown, there is a pre-made list of types that will guide consumers to the right model.

  • Best for: Consumers looking for a wide range of residential and commercial water heater options.

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A. O. Smith Water Heaters Company Information

Company Name:
A. O. Smith
Website:
www.aosmith.com

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