Paloma Water Heaters: Review and Buying Guide

Discover the benefits of Paloma's tankless and condensing water heaters for residential and light commercial use with our comprehensive review and buying guide. Explore the best models, compare specs, features, and benefits, and find troubleshooting tips to ensure optimal performance. Upgrade your water heating system with Paloma's innovative technology and energy-efficient designs.

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Paloma water heaters - Buying guide

Paloma offers a wide range of water heaters, including indoor and outdoor tankless models that use condensing and non-condensing technology, and can be powered by either natural gas or propane (LP). Additionally, they provide a series of combi boilers for efficient residential space and potable water heating. Upgrade your home or business with Paloma's dependable and energy-efficient water heating solutions.

In this article:

  1. Features and advantages
  2. Overview of tankless models
  3. Best advanced models to buy
  4. Benefits and safety
  5. About

Paloma features and advantages

Carbon monoxide protection

Every Paloma water heater designed for indoor installation comes equipped with two essential safety systems: the ICAD safety system (Incomplete Combustion Avoidance Device) and the Overheat Limiter Film Wrap.

The ICAD system, first introduced in 1977, is a sophisticated device designed to monitor and optimize gas combustion, preventing dangerous carbon monoxide production by shutting down the water heater and displaying an error code on the controller. This was the world's first device to prevent imperfect gas combustion, making Paloma water heaters a reliable and safe choice for your home or business.

Overheat Limiter Wrap

In 1997, Paloma developed an Overheat Limiter Wrap, also known as a fire protection sensor, to enhance safety measures. This system plays a critical role in reducing fire risk by encasing the combustion chamber with a plastic film and detecting any overheating around the heat exchanger. With this advanced technology, you can have peace of mind knowing that Paloma water heaters prioritize safety and protection for your home or business.

Flame Failure Protection

Flame Failure Protection is a crucial safety system that utilizes a thermocouple to check for proper firing and reacts in the event of flame-outs. This system is designed to prevent gas leaks and potential hazards by shutting off the gas supply when it detects any issues with the flame. With Paloma water heaters' advanced Flame Failure Protection, you can enjoy reliable and safe hot water for your home or business.

Anti-boil Protector

The Anti-boil Protector is another critical safety feature of Paloma water heaters, utilizing a thermistor-type temperature sensor to detect when the hot water temperature reaches a dangerous level. This system prevents potential hazards by automatically shutting off the water heater and preventing further problems.

DUOnex system

The DUOnex system is an innovative feature that allows two Paloma tankless water heaters to be connected, resulting in increased power and hot water supply. This makes it an ideal solution for high-demand homes, ensuring that there is always enough hot water to meet your needs. With Paloma's DUOnex system, you can enjoy uninterrupted hot water and improved performance, providing ultimate comfort and convenience for you and your family.


When it comes to venting, Paloma non-condensing water heaters with direct vent use category III stainless steel pipes in either a concentric or two-pipe system. For outdoor installation, there are no specific requirements regarding venting pipes. In contrast, condensing models use plastic pipes with a diameter of 2" or 3". Paloma water heaters are designed to be versatile and adaptable to various installation requirements, ensuring that your hot water needs are met safely and efficiently.



Paloma gas water heaters from the Digital series use a digital controller to ensure the safety of users, particularly children and seniors, from scalding hot water. This is achieved by enabling the Bath Controller mode with a maximum temperature setting of 112°F or 44°C, which takes priority over the Main Controller once turned on.

The Main Controller, or Kitchen Controller, is designed for kitchen and laundry use and allows higher water temperatures. Therefore, it should be installed in the kitchen, such as for dishwashing purposes.

One remote controller is included with the Paloma water heater, and up to three Paloma controllers can be used at once.

To achieve a maximum temperature of 185°F or 85°C, you must purchase a commercial conversion kit.

Like other reputable manufacturers, Paloma produces high-quality, eco-friendly, and energy-efficient units with the latest technology.

The presence of these advanced features offers the following benefits to households:

  • Instant, on-demand, and endless hot water supply with 33% greater efficiency than tank-type heaters.
  • Energy Star certification for high efficiency performance.
  • All models meet strict emission rules and safety standards.
  • Longer lifespan.
  • Reduced waste on landfills.
  • Space-saving design.
  • Option to use different venting systems.
  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor installation.

Paloma tankless models review

Paloma tankless water heaterPaloma tankless

Paloma water heaters are divided into two categories: Legacy and Digital.

Choose a tankless water heater from the Legacy group if:

  • Your plumbing and heater have low water pressure, less than 40 psi.
  • There is no electric power, or it is unreliable.
  • Atmospheric venting is the only viable option.

Choose a model from the Digital series if:

  • You need an outdoor model.
  • You are looking for a variety of capacities and models.
  • Your water heating needs are extra large.
  • You are looking for accurate digital temperature settings.
  • You want top-of-the-line anti-scald protection.

Model selection

  • Paloma 5.3 series / PH-20
  • 6.4 series / PH2-20
  • 6.6 series / PH-25
  • 7.4 series / PH-28
  • 8.4 series / PH2-25
  • 9.5 series / PH2-28
  • High Efficiency / PHH-32
  • Legacy

Best advanced models to buy

If you're looking for the best models to buy from Paloma, check out the largest non-condensing models from the 9.5 series - PH2-28 and PHH-32 from the condensing group of tankless water heaters.

Paloma PH2-28

Paloma 9.5 water heaters (PH2-28) come with a small but energy-saving design, providing a maximum power of 199,900 BTU and a water flow of 9.5 GPM, making them ideal for larger homes and delivering hot water to up to four applications simultaneously.

Some of the greatest features to mention are the DUOnex System, self-diagnostic program, remote controller, ICAD safety system, flexible venting options, and others.

Paloma PHH-32

PHH-32RDVN (propane) and PHH-32ROFN (natural gas) models are the only condensing tankless water heaters from Paloma, also designed with a high water flow of 9.5 GPM, which is sufficient for whole-house water heating and up to four fixtures.

Like the PH2-28 models above, these units can produce hot water with a high temperature of up to 185°F for use in commercial applications. In addition, the powerful and low NOx gas burner, with a maximum gas input of 199,900 BTU, ensures high energy efficiency, which is even higher than that found on the above non-condensing unit. It is 0.94 vs. 0.82, making it ultra-efficient and Energy Star compliant.

Another great feature that allows these models to be among the top units is the ability to connect up to 20 units into one system, providing more power and hot water.

The condensing design and lower flue gases allow cheap PVC pipes, but only on direct vent models PHH-32RDVN (propane), while the outdoor models are ventless. Unfortunately, these are also the heaviest units, weighing 20 pounds more than the 9.5 models.

Benefits and safety

Paloma water heaters have a sleek and modern look thanks to their small, space-saving design, which allows for wall installation in kitchens, bathrooms, garages, and basements.

These wall-mounted gas units are constructed using high-quality materials, including stainless steel burners on Legacy models, a corrosion-resistant copper heat exchanger, and combustion chamber. Additionally, most of the parts are easy to replace, making maintenance and performance upkeep simple.

Paloma tankless water heaters utilize intelligent technology, including a self-diagnostic system and error display, to aid in troubleshooting.

Paloma water heaters are environmentally friendly and use innovative technology to significantly reduce NOx and greenhouse gases.

All digital models feature DUOnex Systems, which allow heaters to provide more power, enhance performance, and supply more hot water for your shower. By connecting two Paloma water heaters with a cable and switching to DUO mode, even more power and hot water can be provided.

Paloma tankless water heaters are equipped with freeze protection, making them ideal for users living in severe cold weather conditions.

Paloma 5.3 models are protected down to -20°F (-29°C), while 6.6 and 7.4 series have electrical heating elements that provide protection down to -30°F (-34°C), as long as electric power is available. Additionally, the Legacy line PH-24 can use an accessory kit to add -4°F (-20°C) to the freezing protection.


Paloma offers a 12-year limited warranty on the heat exchanger and 5 years on most parts for their Digital tankless water heaters, and a 5-year warranty on the heat exchanger and 3 years on most parts for the Legacy models. Visit the Paloma official website for more information, manuals, and technical support.

About Paloma

Paloma is one of the leaders in the gas water heating industry and a pioneer in the production of Japanese gas residential appliances. The company has been designing, developing, and producing gas appliances for both residential and commercial use since 1911, meeting the highest level of global and local safety standards.

Paloma established its branch in the US in 1973 and acquired Rheem in 1988, which is the largest manufacturer of water heaters in the US and Canada.

Paloma group headquarters is located in Nagoya, Japan, with production and sales offices in the US, Canada, Australia, China, and other countries.

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