Rheem RTE 13 Electric Tankless Water Heater Review



In the world of electric tankless water heaters, Rheem is definitely one of the leading brands. Known for producing cost effective and durable electric tankless water heaters, Rheem has a suite of products, all of which have received generally favorable reviews. One of the prime products from their suite is the Rheem RTE 13, the best selling water heater on Amazon.

The Rheem RTE 13 electric tankless water heater is renowned for its compact and convenient design, energy efficient system, and above all, top performance for the money. In fact, it is deemed as one of the best ever electric tankless water heaters for small use. It is also an Energy Star certified electric tankless water heater. Let’s take a look at what makes Rheem RTE 13 one water heater that you must have.

Important Features and Specs

The Rheem RTE 13 is the ideal on demand, hot water electric tankless heater when it comes to point of use applications. It can heat a maximum of 4 gallons in just a minute, which is much more than other water heaters in the same category and price margin. Once the system has been switched off, its temperature will drop and the heating process will stop. In other words, when you are not using the Rheem RTE 13, it won’t consume any electricity. This gives you another cost saving initiative to buy one.

The Rheem RTE 13 also features the trademark Rheem energy efficient system. This system helps in keeping your electricity and heating energy bills low. In fact, it can help you save up to hundred dollars on your heating bills per year, especially if you live in the cold parts of the world. That’s quite a remarkable number considering that the Rheem RTE 13 is available for under $200.

The Rheem RTE 13 features an on-unit temperature control with nine different heating levels. An LED is equipped to indicate the active elements of the heater and when the device is in standby mode. It comes with the standard 1/2-in water connection, along with rugged brass or copper heat exchanger. Though the unit doesn’t feel reliable, it has been praised for its durability, and comes with a 10 year warranty for the heat exchanger, with 1 year warranty for all other parts.

The size of the Rheem RTE 13 is quite impressive at only 7.5 inch and it weighs just 7.8 pounds. This indicates that the heater is clearly designed for indoor use, and can easily be installed in cramped areas as well. All you have to do is link the unit to your plumbing or electrical systems or fixtures, and you’re ready to use the unit. That being said it does require 60-double pull breaker and some wiring.

While the Rheem RTE 13 tankless water heater does not feature any flashy or spectacular features like an LCD display or a digital temperature controller, it does however tick all the boxes when it comes to a performance oriented water heater on a budget.


  • Easy to install and use
  • Energy Star certified
  • Compact size
  • Quick heating under one minute despite the relative small size


  • The capacity is rather low and can only provide hot water for not more than two showers or faucets.
  • The water flow, as some consumers have suggested, is rather uneven and unpleasant. However, it does promote itself as a point of use unit rather, so it’s not a hidden fact.

Who Should Buy

While the Rheem RTE 13 is the ideal electric tankless water heater, it becomes rather obsolete when you want one for outdoor use. It compact size, cost, and heating capacity means that it is ideal for indoor use, and more preferably for a small household. It can also work like a charm if you already have a water heating unit but need an additional one to compliment the system.

If you are living in one of the more cold parts of the world where having a water heater becomes a necessity, then RTE 13 is the water heater for you. The Rheem RTE 13 is therefore ideal for singles, or households with not more than 3 or 4 people. This will ensure that you don’t run out of hot water in case you need to take bath quickly.


What more can you ask from an electric tankless water heater that is available under $200? The Rheem RTE 13 is definitely one of the more praised water heaters from the industry leading manufacturers. You can install it with your single shower or above your sink without having to worry about creating additional space. While it may not be suitable for the whole household, if your use of the water heater is low, then Rheem RTE 13 is the right unit for you!