Best AO Smith Electric Water Heaters for the Cost-Effective Heating

Exploring the best AO Smith electric water heaters to buy, features, and benefits, including the standard electric type and hybrid heat pumps, to ensure plenty of hot water for residential home use.

AO Smith electric water heaters: Types and models review

Electric water heaters from AO Smith are designed and built in a wide variety of sizes and grouped into three categories:

  • ProLine
  • ProLine Master
  • Proline XE

The first group is the most affordable, while the last is the most advanced and considered as the best.

Homeowners can buy models with the smallest 2.5-gallon tanks, used for point-of-use service and a single application to the largest 80-gallon tanks found in heat pumps and recommended for the whole house water heating and families with 5-6 families members.

The model size varies. The standard water heaters are tall and mainly equipped with two heating elements, while Lowboy, Compact, and Table Top models are shorter and recommended for houses with limited space. They are mostly equipped with one heating element.

Popular models to buy

The above listing is from hotwater.com, the official AO Smith site.

Features and benefits

AO Smith electric water heaters are equipped with many useful features to ensure maximized efficiency, high performance, reliability, and safe work. With the purchase of an electric unit from this manufacturer, here are the benefits you can enjoy:

  • Protection. With its high-quality commercial-grade characteristics, the Blue Diamond glass coating system protects the metal tank and other components from corrosive water.
  • Reduced corrosion process. Each unit is equipped with a Coregard anode rod and a stainless steel core to defend the system against corrosion.
  • Reduced sediment build-up. The self-cleaning dip tube helps in reducing the mineral deposits or sediment build-up inside the tank, keeping the performance high and extending the life of a unit.
  • Reliable heating. Since water heaters are equipped with strong commercial-grade electric heating elements made of stainless steel and with dry fire protection, they can last and heat longer with no interruption.

Best AO Smith electric water heaters to buy

The best electric models come from the ProLine XE series that includes standard electric models and hybrid electric heat pumps, which are not only high efficient but Energy Star compliant.

ProLine XE series - standard electric type

AO Smith XEAO Smith ProLine XE
(photo: AO Smith)

AO Smith ProLine XE models are the top picks of all electric water heaters designed for residential and mobile home use and for homeowners who prefer an affordable unit with options and convenience.

As per the manufacturer, this group is named the "Best".

There are several categories in this group, including:

  • ProLine XE Electronic Display. These models come with a touchscreen controller so users can easily navigate through the settings and modes and see when the problem occurs using a diagnostic system.
  • ProLine Master Smart Electric. These units are equipped with advanced electronics for smarter use, monitoring, and WiFi connectivity for the remote control. It also has a leak detection sensor and automatic shut-off valve, which help in preventing water damage.
  • ProLine Electronic Thermostat. These models are not as advanced as previous models, but they still contain great features, including a smart port module for grid connectivity.

All these models are equipped with the following AO Smith exclusive features where the quality of some is just like the commercial line;

  • Blue Diamond glass coating - to protect the metal tank from corrosion.
  • Coregard anode rod - to protect the metal tank from corrosion.
  • DynaClean Difuser dip tube (self-cleaning system) that helps in enhanced water output and reduced mineral sediments.
  • Two 5500 kW stainless steel heating elements.
  • Dry fire protection.
  • Enhanced-flow brass drain valve.
  • Size availability: 40, 50, and 55 gallons (depending on the model).
  • Warranty 6-10 years (depending on the model).

Hybrid electric heat pumps

AO Smith Voltex hybrid water heaterAO Smith Voltex

AO Smith Voltex is the hybrid electric heat pump used for water heating and is the most efficient and the only type of all electric units that are Energy Star approved.

AO Smith has six models to offer and for different house sizes, but the most attractive model is HPTU-50N.

Voltex heat pump HPTU-50N is a 50-gal unit designed with the highest energy efficiency of 3.45, and according to the manufacturer, that translates to great savings and over 60% water heating cost reduction. These savings vary and depend on the operating modes. The unit comes with a 10-year warranty.

The advantage of heat pumps is that they can heat water and cool the surrounding air at the same time. The footprint and installation are similar to the typical electric water heaters, with the same number of heating elements and dry fire protection. The electric user interface makes the use very convenient and under control, as the user can easily change and monitor the settings, operating modes and check diagnostics.

While the heat pumps cost more than the standard type, the ultimate efficiency and flexibility make the investment worth considering, as buying Voltex pays off just in a few years.


Depending on the model, AO Smith provides 6-year, 8-year, and 10-year warranties on all residential models.

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