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on July 22, 2010
I actually do like this water heater, and luckily since I'd read a few of the reviews on here before buying, I had bought the things that some people had suggested as necessities so assembly was very easy.

I do have a few problems with it though. Number one, If you are planning on having an outdoor shower, like I currently have...pray to god that it's not windy out while you're showering! Because the wind WILL blow out the pilot and suddenly you will be taking a cold shower.

Number two, I've found that the water gets VERY hot sometimes. Painfully hot! So much so that lately I've had to switch it off every few seconds in order to not burn myself.

Also, as other people have stated before, you either get water pressure, or you get hot water. I've tried turning up the water pressure but it instantly turns off the pilot. So the pressure has to be set to the very lowest setting in order for any hot water. And sadly turning up the pressure does not even out the SUPERHOT water problem. It just shuts off the hot water entirely.

But, for a cheap water heater this thing does the trick. And it is better than a cold shower, or no shower at all!
1313 comments|78 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 27, 2015
So far it's exactly what I hoped for. I read another review that said the threads on the fittings were rough and poorly cut, but that wasn't the case with the unit I received, everything was top-notch. The D batteries were a little hard to insert, but they did eventually go in. I had to drill two holes to permanently attach the top heat deflector, and the drill bit could have punctured the heat exchanger, that was my only complaint. I should have used a stop on the drill bit. I also had to find two short screws for the heat deflector. I installed on the back of my truck bed camper. The unit fired right up and I had to put the heat on the lowest setting to use with the faucet. I'm sure with a showerhead I would need to turn it up a little, but there's plenty of adjustment. On the company website they said that this unit is used around the world to provide hot water in underdeveloped places, so I would guess they have worked out the bugs. All in all this is a remarkable product.
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on November 24, 2011
Tried the unit at home with garden hose and found it to be simple to set up and a good buy for the relatively inexpensive price. When I took it up to the cabin and ran it with a shurflo high pressure 12V pump to a 30 gallon portable water tank, the temperature fluctuated more. Still workable, but would waste 5 gallons before the temp was right. Hanging the L5 on the outside wall and having the output hose go to my own shower head on the other side of the wall, the unit would fire, then stop heating after 30 seconds. Increased the sensitivity setting but didn't do much. After the fifth month and maybe 10th use, it would regularly stop firing after 10-20 seconds. Changing the pressure/flow rate sensitivity didn't help. New propane tanks, new batteries didn't help either. A few runs later, and with the original hose, it simply stopped firing altogether. It's never worked since. Fortunately, my reason for buying the unit was simple. To check the unit's feasibility as a point of use water heater to provide a 5 minute shower through a wall, into a shower stall at a hunting camp.

In contrast, the L-10 I had bought at the same time was just as simple to set up. After a few uses in 35 degree temperatures using near freezing water with my shurflo 12V pump, I was overjoyed. The water temp came out steady, the flow higher, and with less waste dialing in the temperatures. I later added my own PEX line to my own shower head, and added a 5 gallon pressure tank to reduce the constant rattle of the pump. I have a steady temperature in seconds and none of the problems I had experienced with the L10's little brother, the L5.

If you're camping, it's warm, and you have access to a steady water pressure and flow rate, the L5 passes. Its cheap, easy, and ok for very light use. As posted by others here, the L5, if used with a pump and water tank, is very finicky. My father (with a lifetime of plumbing experience) and I were frustrated most of the time. My unit didn't last very long either. I'd strongly recommend upgrading to the L10 for anything but the lightest temporary uses. It's everything the L5 is not. Good luck and enjoy!
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on August 27, 2014
Ecotemp products are among the worst on the market, product engineering incorporates low-cost components most suitable for use in coffee pot, implementation and assembly is conducted using cheap labor, and it shows. Ecotemp is a tiny company in SC with fewer than 10 employees. Ecotemp advertises great customer service and reliable products; however, just try and call customer service and see if you get an answer. Ecotemp will happily send you replacement parts because parts are cheap, product warranty is only 30 days replacement (30 DAYS!!!). After 30 days you will be doing your own repairs if your unit works at all. Do not even attempt to send unit back for warranty repairs; Ecotemp will manufacture a reason to blame you for unit failure. I purchased new Ecotemp appliance shortly over one year ago; nothing but problems from start to finish with overheating, constant error codes and various component failures. Unit finally burned-up in basement. Attempted to have unit returned under warranty, Ecotemp failed to contact me for over a week, then refused to send replacement, until faulty unit was shipped back and evaluated. Ecotemp did nothing but give me run-around while family was without hot water for over two weeks. Finally forced to purchase Rheem appliance; functions perfectly using same plumbing, vent, and water supply. Absolutely worst product and customer service experience is quite some time. READ PRODUCT WARRANTY BEFORE PURCHASING ECOTEMP PRODUCTS; THEN READ RHEEM PRODUCT WARRANTY. ECOTEMP PRODUCTS ARE ULTRA CHEAP, UNRELIABLE AND HAZARDOUS. DO NOT BE FOOLED BY LOW COST OF PRODUCT; YOU WILL RECEIVE APPLIANCE WITH LOWEST POSSIBLE STANDARD OF ENGINEERING, INCLUDING CAREFULLY CRAFTED WARRANTY; WHICH WILL BE USED AGAINST YOU WHEN APPLIANCE FAILS.
PS: My unit was professionally installed by licensed technician, plumbing, vent, condensate drain, pressure regulation, water filtration systems all brand new and in perfect operating order. Ecotemp stated must be problem with plumbing when internal parts from defective appliance ended up in my drinking water.
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on May 7, 2015
Not giving it five stars since getting it to work properly required ordering a pump recommended by the manufacturer, which was the wrong thing altogether (returned it) and several rounds of technical support. The problem turned out to be that the shower head supplied with the unit has a water restrictor in it that doesn't allow enough water through the tankless unit to provide adequate flow, which in turn means the water is scalding hot at the lowest setting. (Our water pressure is triple the required minimum PSI.) Once I replaced the shower head with a model without a water restrictor, everything worked fine. I had to spend another $10 for an in-line on/off valve since I was not able to find a shower head with an on/off switch like the one supplied with the unit. So while I'm ultimately happy with the product, the process of getting it to work and the fact that they supplied a shower head that is incompatible with the unit made it very frustrating.
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on May 24, 2011
After waiting two weeks for my Eccotemp L5 Tankless Water Heater, I was glad that it arrived before the holiday weekend so we could take it with us on a camping trip and give it a try. I was disappointed to find that somebody else had already taken it for a test run. The unit was wet, bags of parts had been opened (not sure what may have been missing), the instruction book contained curled and folded pages. I don't know if this is the reason Amazon had the lowest price available on this unit (a couple of bucks lower than Sportsman's Guide), but it certainly was not acceptable. I'm also not sure who is to blame...Amazon or the manufacturer. At any rate, it is headed back to Amazon and I am expecting a full refund.
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on April 22, 2012
Bought this product for camping and was extremely pleased for the first 3 showers. Then the hose exploded. Not sure why they inlcuded a plastic hose when this is obviously designed for outdoor/rugged use. I replaced the plastic with a metal shower hose from a local plumbing store. It worked for another 3 showers and then quit igniting. Cold showers the rest of the trip. Sent the company an email and they sent me email instructions to mess with the thermocouple. I haven't tried to fix it yet but was disappointed that after 2 problems in 2 days, they didn't offer to replace the unit. When it worked it was great though. Just wasn't looking to spend my money so I could have something to fix on my vacation! Word to the wise, take a backup solar shower!
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on January 8, 2012
I got the unit and was so upset to realize that it was used. It was dripping water, had teflon and dents on it's threading, and worst it was DEFECTIVE! I called the 800 number but was closed and left a message. That was 2 weeks ago and still have not heard from them.

I am not sure if this is a defect but the unit keeps turning off after 10-15 minutes of use. Only solution was turning the switch on and off to give me another 20-30 seconds of use.
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on August 27, 2015
This product blows everybody away that sees it. It works better than we had hoped. Oh how I wish that I had this when my boys were little.. I will love washing off my doggies outside. I use 1/2 cup of baking soda in a gallon of warm water and a drop of dawn dish soap; followed by a gallon of warm water with 1 cup of apple cider vinegar added. Then rinse with this eccotemp L5. My dogs smell great and stay clean longer.
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on March 13, 2015
I bought this after using one at a festival. The shower was set up in a private booth. It was easy to use and gave a good hot shower. It was soooooo luxurious! No, really, it was!

I live on 10 acres with a well that is very very high in calcium. My main water heater died a horribly calcium suffocation death. This was the day before my parents were due to visit my new property for the first time. I set up a small 8X8 pavilion and created a shower using this water heater (as pictured-- the canvas walls come up for privacy). It worked fantastically. There were no complaints. I have an on-demand water heater for my normal shower and I am now using this water heater in a permanently built outdoor shower house.
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