Review: Rheem PROG50-42N Professional Classic Residential Gas Water Heater

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It’s strangely difficult to find a classic water heater these days. This is because of changing efficiency regulations, which have caused many manufacturers to expand the width of their water heater tanks to compensate for added insulation. With the Rheem PROG50-42N Professional Classic Residential Gas Water Heater, you’ll receive the closest thing to a direct replacement that you’ll find in our industry today.

This may be a natural gas water heater, but it utilizes indoor air for combustion. Then you have a blower which will exhaust the gases from the home. You have access to an exclusive air and fuel shut-off device on this appliance, which is nice for maintenance and servicing purposes. It does not require a filter, so regular maintenance chores are reduced with this unit as well.

Why Choose the Rheem PROG50-42N Gas Water Heater?

What makes this gas water heater stand out from the competition is the exclusive anode rod technology that Rheem has incorporated. It is something they call “R-Tech” and it helps to provide more protection to the interior of the tank. If you have source water that is highly corrosive, even if you have it filtered or softened, then you could burn through your sacrificial rods in no time at all.

This technology will give you a prolonged time of protection. As long as you follow a regular flushing and maintenance schedule with this gas water heater, you’ll notice a real difference in the consistency of your hot water over a long-term basis.

It also offers long venting lengths, up to 100 equivalent feet, so installation is about as easy as it gets.

Advantages of Owning the Rheem PROG50-42N Gas Water Heater

The primary advantage that homeowners will notice with this specific water heater is its reduced noise levels. The blower on this water heater is extremely quiet, to the point where you can barely hear it running even when you’re standing next to it.

This water heater also has a fast heating cycle. We were able to produce almost 100 gallons of hot water over the course of 60 minutes, giving it a complete cycle of just under 30 minutes when set at 120F. If you set the temperature at 140F, we could produce a complete cycle in 48 minutes.

Like many new gas water heaters, there is an adjustment dial and warning indicator that will flash a code if something is wrong with the unit. The owner’s guide is thorough and helpful, which makes it easy to care for and maintain this appliance. It comes with a standard 6-year warranty.

The only real issue that we can see coming up with this Rheem water heater is its efficiency rating, which is just 0.67. This means not every jurisdiction will allow its sale. If you are approved for purchase, the self-diagnostic system, quick cycling times, and improved monitoring technologies make this a logical investment. We would strongly recommend it to anyone in need of an upgrade or replacement.

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