Buyer’s Guide & Information

Best 40 Gallon GAS Water Heater

by Andrew

Water heaters are essential to our everyday lives. They help us clean our dishes, clothing, and bodies. We also use hot water for cooking, eating or drinking and a host of other reasons. When your water heater goes out, starts to leak, or needs replacement, it can be a difficult time. 

This article will examine the 40-gallon gas water heater brands and their models. We will look at the best options from the brands and teach you what to look for when deciding on the perfect gas water heater to purchase.  

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Model Name

Dimension

Heating Efficiency

Flow Rate

Check Price

Rheem PROG40-40N RH62 Professional Classic...

Rheem (PROG40 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

20x20x50 Inches

40000 BTU Input

67 Gallons Per Minute

Bradford White 40 Gallon Natural Gas Water...

Bradford White (RG24076N 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

20x20x60.5 Inches

48000 BTU Input

89 Gallons Per Minute

A.O. Smith XCR-40 ProMax Plus High Efficiency...

A.O. Smith (SCR-70 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

22x22x58.5 Inches

45000 BTU Input

52 Gallons Per Minute

40T6-34NG 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater

Whirlpool (40T6-34NG 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

20x20x61Inches

34000 BTU Input

68 Gallons Per Minute

American (PVG62-40750-NVS 40 Gallon Gas Water heater )

American (PVG62-40750-NVS 40 Gallon Gas Water heater )

20x20x59.25 Inches

50000 BTU Input

71 Gallons Per Minute

State (Ultra-Low Nox 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

State (Ultra-Low Nox 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

22x22x51 Inches

40000 BTU Input

41 Gallons Per Minute

Reliance

Reliance (6 40 NBCT 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

20x20x62 Inches

40000 BTU Input

42 Gallons Per Minute

Richmond

Richmond (Encore 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

21.75x21.75x50.5 Inches

40000 BTU Input

42 Gallons Per Minute

American Standard

American Standard (GN Ultra Low Nox 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

21x21x61 Inches

40000 BTU Input

38 Gallons Per Minute


Benefits of Gas Over Electric Hot Water Heating 

Gas water heaters have some disadvantages over other power types, but they do hold a few advantages as well. Let’s see why you may want to consider gas water heaters over electric models. 

Fast Heating 

Gas flames burn hotter than electrical elements can get without causing damage. Because the burners will work to heat warm water as the cold is mixed with previously heated water, the heat transfer is faster. This results in gas heaters running less often at higher temperatures and heating the water in the tanks faster. 

Lower Energy Costs 

Because of the inner tank insulation, glass lining, and speedy heat recovery times, gas water heaters also tend to run less and for shorter times. This can create some elevated energy efficiency levels that are only good for you. You will get better performance with higher efficiency while saving on your monthly electrical bills. 

Easy Installation 

Gas water heaters don't require electrical wiring for the function of the heater and only for the powered vent (if applicable). Because of this one less step, there is less danger to the installer and a generally easier installation overall. In most cases, a gas water heater can be installed in less than 2 hours. 

Operates During Blackout 

Since there isn't a requirement for the water heater to function using electricity, it will continue to run as intended even during a power outage. This means that in storm-prone areas such as the hurricane coast or colder climates with ice issues, gas water heaters can still run to offer hot meals and baths when the power does go out. 

Cleaner Water 

Depending on your local water supply's water and mineral levels, a gas water heater will burn out impurities better than an electric model. With cleaner water, there is less contamination in your filters, making them last longer. It also helps prevent foul odors and corrosion from the water inside the tank. 


Finding the Right Gas Water Heater 

Choosing the right gas heater for your water needs is more than just choosing a brand or model. Below you will find several factors and explanations for why they are essential to your final decision. 

Tall Vs. Short Sized System 

Tall tank systems are more slender and designed to replace or fit in an electric water tank closet. For 40-gallon tanks, the actual height will vary, but they will be between 42 and 62 inches tall on average. 

Short tank systems, on the other hand, are designed to fit in tighter spaces, even going so far as to be installed as point of use heaters under cabinets or in crawl spaces. Whatever your installation needs and space requirements, there will be an option to match. 

Budget Vs. Expensive Brands 

Gas models have a lot of features, safety measures, and options. Budget-friendly brands are less inclined to have digital readouts, wireless capabilities, or self-diagnostic systems installed. However, they function as intended and work to heat the water in your home. 

Higher-end models, though, will have various venting options, extra safety features, and even better construction materials. Longer lasting and more efficient, it is sometimes worth it to go for a higher-end model for the long-term savings they can offer. 

Efficiency of the Unit 

Several factors will determine the overall efficiency of the water heater. For the most part, the portions you need to know about or be concerned with are the recovery rate, temperature range, and BTU output. 

Gas models offer a higher energy efficiency than their electrical counterparts because there isn't a significant need for electrical connections (except for some displays and power venting fans). 

Power Vent Or Direct Vent 

Power venting is when the fumes and gases are expelled using a fan motor that pulls the fumes from the space and pushes them out of the home through ducts. This is the most viable form of noxious gas removal and one of the safest, but it comes at a higher cost and more complex installation. 

Direct venting doesn’t use a fan and relies on the home HVAC system or air vents to naturally remove the old air, replacing it with new air to remove fumes and odors.  


Best 40 Gallon Gas Water Heaters Reviewed 

We will cover the best brands and models for 40-gallon gas fueled water heaters. Each brand is rated, reviewed, and compared with a single best-of model selected for a deeper examination. Read through and find your next gas water heater. 

1. Rheem (PROG40 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater) 

Specifications

Dimension 

20x20x50 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

40000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

90 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

67 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Atmospheric 

Warranty 

6-year warranty 

Rheem is a brand name that rarely needs an introduction. They are well known in the HVAC space and are also known for their plumbing equipment and water heaters. They have a wide range of products in the space, including electric and gas (natural and propane) units. 

The sizes range from the small under-counter and point of use to large multi-family 100+ gallons. In the 40-gallon range, the number of available models is more limited but still viable for most installation needs with size or depth requirements. 

With Rheem, you get mid-level quality and budget-friendly prices. They offer three tiers of water heaters, including the PRO line series. The Rheem PRO G40-40N RH62, for example, is a mid-range model that has all the features you need. 

It includes atmospheric venting and fume, flame, and overheating sensors, so there is no worry of any major problems. If the sensors detect high levels, the system will be shut down, and the pilot light will be turned off. 

Rheem also has their own proprietary anode rods that last longer and offer more protection than a standard rod to fight corrosion in the tank. Along with glass lining and thick insulation, heat transfer and corrosion are kept to a bare minimum. 

A 6-year warranty protects your investment, but it is important to read through the agreement before buying. Know what is covered, what isn't, and what is required on your end to make a warranty claim. 

Pros
  • Simple installation 
  • Spark ignition system 
  • Low-NOx emissions 
Cons

2. Bradford White (RG24076N 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

20x20x60.5 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

48000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

102 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

89 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

6-years 

Bradford White is one of the top two water heater manufacturers around. Instead of worrying about tiers or budget-friendly models, Bradford White focuses on premium models only. They are the parent company to many smaller brands that handle the mid-range and budget-friendly tiers. 

When you buy Bradford White, you purchase high-quality parts, expert construction, and long-lasting performance. Of course, high energy efficiency is a part of that, as well. 

Take the Bradford White 40 gallon Natural Gas water heater (model RG240T6N), for example. This model is not as basic as it first seems. Using magnesium anode rods, corrosion is all but eliminated. But, of course, you need to change out these sacrificial rods on time to be more effective. 

The Hydrojet system prevents sediment from settling on the bottom of the tank, and the low drain valve helps to get a complete drain when you empty the tank. In addition, with Piezo ignition and an all-new screen arrestor design, your burn chamber is safe from overburning. 

This model also features onboard self-diagnostics with LED readouts, so you always know if there is a problem and what that issue is. With a 6-year warranty, you are also covered if anything happens to go wrong. 

Pros
  • High-quality construction 
  • Self-diagnostics 
  • Simple installation for a trained professional 
  • Customer service is excellent 
  • Most recommended brand by pros 
Cons
  • Warranty should be longer 
  • Maintenance is a little higher than most other brands 

3. A.O. Smith (SCR-70 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

22x22x58.5 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

45000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

98 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

52 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

10-year tank, 6-year parts warranty 

If Bradford White is one of the two best brands, AO Smith is the other. These two go back and forth for the top spot constantly, and both are considered premium. As with Bradford White, AO Smith is only sold through plumbing and contractor professionals. 

If you buy direct, you aren’t going through an authorized dealer. While this generally won’t matter, it might affect your warranty. Make sure you are covered before you buy, just to be safe. 

When you do buy, though, you will get a premium water heater model that has all the advanced features you would expect. AO Smith produces many electric and natural gas models. They also have an extensive lineup of propane models and sizes that fit in RVs, under cabinets, or in garages for multi-family use. 

The XCR-40 is part of the ProMax Plus line. It has a longer warranty and better quality parts installed for better performance. Included in that are the Blue Diamond glass lining on the inner tank and 2.5 inches of non-CFC foam insulation. 

Their dip tubes, called Dynaclean, offer a jet tip with swirl mechanics to prevent water and sediment from settling or being stagnant. This also helps the water mix thoroughly, which heats faster when needed. 

The improved chipset and microprocessor allow for more precise controls and improved heating response. This is one of the most efficient gas water heaters on the market, as are all of the ProMas Plus series models. 

With a 10-year tank and 6-year parts warranty, you are covered longer against leaks and corrosion. Customer service is also ready to handle any issue or question you may have. 

Pros
  • Low maintenance model 
  • Higher efficiency than most other brands on this list 
  • Anti-corrosion measures 
  • Self-diagnostic system 
  • Fast heating capabilities 
Cons
  • Can be quite expensive 
  • Warranty should be longer for this line 

4. Whirlpool (40T6-34NG 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

20x20x61Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

34000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

78 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

68 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

6-year warranty 

Whirlpool also has their hands in the water heater industry. Best known for their kitchen and laundry appliances, Whirlpool knows something about water circulation and heating. While they may not be the best of the best, they are well above average where it matters most. 

The performance of a Whirlpool gas water heater will continue to amaze you long after it has been installed. What it lacks in aesthetics and technological advances, it makes up for in heating speed and flow rates. 

The gas water heater line isn't the largest in the industry, but they have plenty of options that will fit almost everyone's needs. This includes the Whirlpool Model# 40T6-34NG model. 

This unit gives you dependable service, standard anti-corrosion systems, and some unexpected features like the Piezo ignitor. Generally, budget-friendly models use a spark ignitor system; adding a dedicated Piezo ignitor is a great bonus. 

You also get Type B double-wall ventilation, which isn't the best in the world, but it functions well with minimal interference and lower maintenance. 

The 6-year warranty covers the tank and parts, and when paired with a labor warranty from your plumber, you have full coverage for a highly affordable cost.  

Pros
  • Piezo ignitor 
  • Low maintenance model 
  • Simple installation 
  • Factory-installed T&P relief valve 
  • Low-NOx emissions 
Cons
  • Not Energy Star rated 
  • Not available in all areas 

5. American (PVG62-40750-NVS 40 Gallon Gas Water heater )

Specifications

Dimension 

20x20x59.25 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

50000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

87 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

71 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Power Vent  

Warranty 

6-year warranty 

Whirlpool also has their hands in the water heater industry. Best known for their kitchen and laundry appliances, Whirlpool knows something about water circulation and heating. While they may not be the best of the best, they are well above average where it matters most. 

The performance of a Whirlpool gas water heater will continue to amaze you long after it has been installed. What it lacks in aesthetics and technological advances, it makes up for in heating speed and flow rates. 

The gas water heater line isn't the largest in the industry, but they have plenty of options that will fit almost everyone's needs. This includes the Whirlpool Model# 40T6-34NG model. 

This unit gives you dependable service, standard anti-corrosion systems, and some unexpected features like the Piezo ignitor. Generally, budget-friendly models use a spark ignitor system; adding a dedicated Piezo ignitor is a great bonus. 

You also get Type B double-wall ventilation, which isn't the best in the world, but it functions well with minimal interference and lower maintenance. 

The 6-year warranty covers the tank and parts, and when paired with a labor warranty from your plumber, you have full coverage for a highly affordable cost.  

Pros
  • LimeFighter dip tubes 
  • Hot surface ignitor 
  • Environmentally friendly insulation 
  • Energy Star rated 
  • 3-position blower outlet 
Cons
  • No retail sales 
  • Must be professionally installed 

6. State (Ultra-Low Nox 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

22x22x51 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

40000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

91 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

41 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

8-year warranty 

AO Smith took over State water heaters in 2001 and since then has helped the smaller company excel. With AO Smith manufacturing plants and still being left alone to do their own thing, State has grown from an entry-level manufacture to a mid-range giant. 

When it comes to State water heaters, it is important to note you are not getting an AO Smith water heater in a State costume. State still handles all the production, parts, and manufacturing. It is true, though, that State does use a lot of AO Smith parts. 

This is not to say that State is not a good brand. If you want power and performance along with high efficiency, all while saving money, they are well worth a closer look. 

Take the ProLine Master model (GW8 40 BCUS). This tall tank design holds 40 gallons, flows through over 91 gallons in the first hour, and meets all required emission requirements with flying colors. 

On top of that, it only needs 40000 BTU to run efficiently and keep your water hot. Because of the low intake and high output, the ProLine series is also one of the top efficient models in the industry. 

If you want a State model, you will need to go through a local plumber or contractor, though, as they aren't sold through retail. Any retail or 3rd party purchase will void the warranty immediately, so keep that in mind. 

Pros
  • No external power source needed 
  • Stainless steel core anode rods 
  • 33% reduction of emissions 
  • High energy efficiency 
Cons
  • Doesn’t handle hard water without softener 
  • May not install in all locations 

7. Reliance (6 40 NBCT 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

20x20x62 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

40000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

80 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

42 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

6-year warranty 

Another AO Smith child company is Reliance. Starting as Union Energy in 1999, it wasn’t long before AO Smith saw the potential in this Canadian company and acquired them. Unlike State, though, Reliance is more of an AO Smith underling and not so much on their own. 

This means that AO Smith has more to do with manufacturing and production than they do with State. It also means that AO Smith parts are more readily found inside, and AO Smith model numbers can replace the Reliance parts you do get. 

However, once again, it is important to note that you are not getting an AO Smith model for a lower price. Sold primarily in Canada, it is also more difficult to find a Reliance brand in the US, and when you do, it is generally near the border. Such as the 6-40-NBCT model. 

This unit is about as basic as it can get while still being on the upper end of the budget-friendly range. With PEX dip tubes, sediment doesn't settle, and water mixing is more thorough. 

You will also find the reliable and recommended Piezo ignitor system lighting the pilot. If you want to run on propane instead of natural gas? No problem, the connectors are included with every purchase. 

With a lower output, the 40,000 BTU isn’t enough to make this model Energy Star rated, but it isn’t far off, so you will still get decent energy efficiency. It just won’t qualify for any rebates or rewards. 

Pros
  • Install kit includes LP gas connections 
  • PEX dip tubes 
  • Piezo ignitor 
  • Glass-lined tank with all sensors included 
Cons
  • Not Energy Star rated 
  • Not readily available in the US 

8. Richmond (Encore 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

21.75x21.75x50.5 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

40000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

69 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

42 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Power Direct Vent  

Warranty 

12-year warranty 

Keeping with our parent/child company theme, Richmond is owned and operated by Rheem. However, the difference here is that when you buy a Richmond, you are getting a Rheem in a Richmond shell, at least for the most part. 

Not all Rheem part numbers will work with Richmond units, but most will. Rheem also controls the warranties, customer service, and other day-to-day aspects of the company. 

This is why Richmond and Rheem have near-identical lines, model names, and appearances. One of the biggest differences, though, is that Richmond models are designed for the southern states, where hot temperatures and hard water are most prevalent. 

Because of this, you will find the Encore series as the top of the series lineups. Like the Encore 40-gallon model (also available in 38 and 50 gallons). The power damper venting of this model actually works to keep the water hotter longer. It traps the exhaust in the damper to transfer heat back into the tank before releasing it to the vents. 

You will also find better than standard sediment mixing technologies that help keep your tank clean and corrosion-free, even with hard water. 

These models also feature self-diagnostics, electronic gas control, and Piezo ignitors. There is even an eco-friendly burner installed to help spread heat evenly and offer lower NOx emissions. 

Plus, with the Encore series, you get a 12-year tank and parts warranty, which includes 2-year in-home coverage, so you won't need to remove the unit for service or warranty claims. 

Pros
  • One of the best warranties in the industry 
  • Short tank design for easier installation 
  • Filter and maintenance-free 
  • All brass drain valves 
Cons
  • Requires electrical connection 

9. American Standard (GN Ultra Low Nox 40 Gallon Gas Water Heater)

Specifications

Dimension 

21x21x61 Inches 

Heating Efficiency 

40000 BTU Input 

First Hour Delivery 

74 Gallons 

Flow Rate 

38 Gallons Per Minute 

Venting System 

Direct Vent  

Warranty 

6 or 12-years 

American Standard (again, not the same as American) is its own company. Technically they are now owned by Rheem, but unlike Richmond, they are left to their own devices. Much like the relationship between State and AO Smith, American Standard is a budget-friendly, performance-ready water heater company sold through retail outlets. 

This makes finding a water heater easier, and you can pick the exact model you like. Sold through shops like Home Depot, Lowe's, Menards, and even Walmart, you won't have any trouble finding American Standard products. 

This includes their line of gas water heaters, like the 40-gallon model GN40-T2-3-6. It features a tall tank design that is slender to fit in spaces originally made for electric water heaters. 

What you will find, though, is that there are enough features to make them worthwhile without overloading on the technology to help keep costs low. 

For example, you won't find any self-diagnostics or WiFi communications. But you will get glass-lined inner tanks, 2-inch thick foam insulation, and all-brass drain valves. 

One of the unexpected surprises, though, is the anode rods. With American Standard, you get magnesium instead of stainless steel or aluminum. For superior anti-corrosion, magnesium is the go-to metal. 

Plus, depending on when and where you buy, you can extend the 6-year warranty to 12-years. Readily available, lower cost, high performance, and a great warranty. What else can you ask for? 

Pros
  • Budget-friendly pricing 
  • Low maintenance 
  • High output 
  • Ultra Low-NOx emissions 
Cons
  • All steel tank 
  • No Piezo ignitor 

40 Vs. 50 Gallon Hot Water Heaters Compared 

There are a few differences in the 40 and 50 gallon models that you should understand. Aside from the actual 10 gallon capacity difference, there are some behind-the-scenes things to consider, too. 

The first is the recovery rate. A 40-gallon system will recover the water and heat it faster than a 50-gallon model. However, a 40-gallon tank may not hold enough hot water for your family. This is where usage and family size are important. 

A 40-gallon tank gas water heater is usually sufficient to supply hot water to a family of 4 or less. This will include daily showers, dishes, laundry, and cleaning. However, if the showers are too close together, you may run out of hot water. Your daily usage will help determine if this is true for you. 

On the other hand, a 50-gallon tank will easily handle a family of 4 and can support up to 6 family members. Aside from the recovery and heating speeds of the models, the size of your family is the biggest factor. Planning accordingly will help you pick the right model. 


Price & Installation Costs for Homeowners 

In most cases, larger means more expensive. In the case of 40-gallon water heaters, the unit cost will fall anywhere between $400 for lower-end models up to $1500 for higher-end models. However, you still need to consider installation fees. 

Installing a 40-gallon gas water heater has its own risks and optional fees. For example, removal and disposal of the old unit can add a hefty amount to the total bill but is almost always required. Clean-up and other service fees will also come into play. 

It is also worth noting that most installers will charge the labor fee by the hour with a minimum two-hour charge. A 40-gallon install will generally take between 2 and 3 hours and can cost up to about $1000 on average, with lower and higher costs being region or contractor-specific. 

To help with finding the best plumber or contractor for the install, see further below. 


Where Can I Buy Hot Water Heaters On Sale? 

Finding the best deal on water heaters can be difficult and hit or miss depending on several factors. One of the major factors is the brand. Some brands are only sold wholesale, which means you must go through a plumber or contractor to get them. 

For the rest, though, you can shop both in person or online to find the best deals. For in-person shopping, you want to check local hardware and home improvement stores. Home Depot is a popular choice because of their installation team that can deliver and install your new water heater. 

Lowe’s is another store that will carry a large selection, and any they don't have can be ordered online. If you are in the midwest, Menards is also a possible one-stop-shop for your new water heater. 

However, if you want to save the most money and don’t have to have the latest models manufactured, you can shop on Amazon. While they do have the newest models listed as well, they also carry listings for older models, still new and with a warranty. These older models are heavily discounted because they aren't sold by the major stores anymore. 


How To Find a Reliable Local Plumber 

If you struggle thinking about finding the best plumber or contractor to perform the water heater install, we have you covered. By using the app below, you can enter your information and get the contact information for up to 4 local contractors for free. 

Not only is it free, but the results you get are all local to your area, properly vetted, rated, reviewed, and have all background checks completed already. All you have to do is pick three (or all four) and set up estimate interviews. It can't get easier than that. 


People Also Ask (FAQs)

How long does a 40 gallon gas water heater last? 

With proper maintenance, including bi-annual draining and worn part replacement, a 40-gallon gas water heater can last several years. Most gas water heaters are warrantied between 6 and 12 years, but with proper care, you can easily add 3 to 5 years to that without worry. 

How much does it cost to replace a 40 gallon gas water heater? 

Cost will depend on several factors, including the brand and model of the replacement water heater, who performs the removal and installation, where you are located, and more. On average, a complete replacement, including disposal and environmental fees from the contractor, will cost between $800 and $2500. 

How tall is a standard 40-gallon water heater? 

The height of your water heater will also depend on several factors. On average, though, a 40-gallon gas water heater will fall between 48 and 60 inches in height, with all valves and piping not included. 


Conclusion

Buying a new gas water heater doesn’t have to be a cumbersome chore. Knowing what you need and where to get it is the biggest part of the battle. Once you understand what the brands have to offer and what you need, the final decision becomes a lot more clear. 

Hopefully, we have helped show you what to expect, where to go and what to look for when choosing your next water heater. 

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