Recent smart home technology has developed far beyond the convenience and predictability we are used to from our smart phones. Homes have smart TVs, refrigerators, lights, fixtures, ovens and more. Homeowners don’t often think of the behind the scenes areas of their home that can also benefit from smart technology, including one of the most important appliances in the home: a tankless water heater.

Smart recirculation technology predicts homeowners’ hot water needs, as seen in innovative tankless water heaters, such as Rinnai’s new Smart-Circ™ Intelligent Recirculation™ featured in the recently launched RE Series™. There are a whole host of benefits to the user and PRO that comes with smart hot water products, including a supply of never-ending hot water, faster installation, increased money savings and product longevity. 

  • Faster and never-ending supply of hot water: The smart recirculation technology learns a user’s hot water habits over seven days without having to set schedules or prompt with on-demand devices. The unit tracks each time a significant hot water usage occurs, such as a shower or a bath. The technology then records the hot water used and will recirculation at the same time for the next seven days. Once the schedule is set and the pattern is learned, hot water will be available when needed.

    But life gets busy and fluctuations in schedules occur. The smart recirculation technology allows for those deviations, such as adjusting for a shower earlier in the day. The technology constantly learns and adapts to new water usage, so should something happen to a schedule, the tankless unit will learn and modify the delivery of hot water accordingly. The technology will eventually forget the old usage pattern if significant hot water use doesn’t reoccur.

  • Faster installation: The PRO will no longer have to install an external controller, set up the app or educate their customer on how to program their hot water on demand. You simply install the tankless unit with smart recirculation technology built right in and let the technology learn its user’s habits, creating a more streamlined installation process.

    And additional time and money are saved during installation, as a dedicated return line isn’t necessary for the recirculation technology. A thermal bypass valve can be used, which allows water already in the system to recirculate through the cold-water line back to the tankless water heater for heating, enabling faster hot water regardless of plumbing configuration.

  • Saving money: Tankless water heaters are an excellent option to save money in the long run. With the smart appliance, users can save on water usage and energy consumption through recirculation patterns and scheduled hot water delivery. These features reduce the need to run water from a faucet or other appliance until it reaches the desired temperature, which often wastes a lot of water. And energy is conserved by scheduling hot water delivery based on past usage versus having it on a mode that circulates on regular time intervals, ensuring the pump doesn’t waste energy by running during off-times when hot water is not being used.

  • Increasing longevity: As the unit is not actively working during periods when hot water is not in use, the appliance is conserving its integrity, reducing the strain put on itself and allowing the unit to function for a longer timeframe.

With smarter homes, comes smarter appliances, and smart recirculation technology tankless water heaters are at the forefront of this innovation, improving the experience for both the user and PRO. To learn more about Rinnai’s RE Series, featuring Smart-Circ Intelligent Recirculation technology, visit

David Federico is Senior Director of Marketing at Rinnai America Corporation with primary responsibilities for leading the marketing strategy for its residential and commercial products. Prior to joining the organization in 2016, David held marketing leadership positions at multinational corporations including Georgia-Pacific. David is a graduate of Georgia State University with a bachelor's degree in Business Administration - Marketing.