Tankless water heaters, often called on-demand water heaters, have become increasingly popular due to their energy efficiency and space-saving design.
How Does a Tankless Water Heater Work?
Unlike traditional water heaters that continuously heat and store hot water in a tank, tankless models heat water directly as it flows through the unit. You can hire our installers and enjoy the 5 tankless water heater pros.
But to enjoy those benefits for years and keep your system running at its best, you should follow these essential tankless water heater maintenance tips.
7 Tankless Water Heater Maintenance Tips
Hard water has a high mineral content, leading to scale build-up in your tankless water heater caused by the accumulation of limestone, iron, calcium, and magnesium in your tankless water heater.
Sediment buildup will make your tankless water heater work harder to heat your water, which can cause a leak in the heat exchanger or early failure of parts inside the unit.
Over time, minerals in the water, such as calcium and magnesium, accumulate in the heater, reducing efficiency and potentially leading to malfunctions.
Every 12 to 18 months, consider descaling your tankless water heater. You can use a vinegar solution to dissolve these mineral deposits. Refer to your unit’s manual for specific descaling instructions, as the process can vary depending on the make and model.
In general, you can follow these 7 steps to descale your heater.
Step 1: Turn off isolation valves and gas
Step 2: Connect hoses
Step 3: Attach hoses to circulation pump
Step 4: Add a cleaning agent (a vinegar solution)
Step 5: Open valves
Step 6: Flush cleaning agent
Step 7: Reconnect
Tankless water heaters come equipped with in-line filters that trap debris and prevent it from entering the unit. A clogged filter restricts water flow, forcing the system to work harder and possibly causing a drop in water pressure.
Regularly inspect and clean the in-line filter. Depending on the water quality and usage, you may need to check the filter every six months to a year. If the filter is damaged or overly clogged, replace it.
While tankless water heaters have fewer leak points than traditional tank models, they’re not immune to leaks. Regularly inspecting your unit for signs of leaks can prevent more significant issues.
Look around the unit, paying attention to connections and valves. If you notice any moisture or drips, address the issue immediately. Sometimes, simply tightening a connection can solve the problem. However, persistent leaks may require professional attention.
For a tankless water heater to function efficiently, it needs adequate airflow. Ensure the area around your unit, especially if installed indoors, is free from obstructions.
Regularly inspect the area around your heater. Remove any items blocking airflow, and ensure vents are clean and debris-free. This is especially important for units that rely on combustion air from the surrounding environment.
Proper venting is crucial for tankless water heaters, especially gas-powered units. Over time, vents can become clogged or damaged, impacting the unit’s performance and safety.
Periodically inspect the venting system. Ensure it’s free from obstructions like bird nests or debris. Consider replacing the affected sections if you notice any damage or corrosion.
While many maintenance tasks can be done by homeowners, having a professional inspect your system annually can ensure it’s operating at peak efficiency. A professional can identify potential issues before they become significant problems, giving you peace of mind.
Click to book an annual inspection with our qualified technicians at BG Plumbing. We’ll check the unit’s performance, calibrate the system if needed, and recommend any necessary tankless water heater repair.
Regularly review and adjust the temperature settings on your tankless water heater. Maintaining the correct temperature can prevent scalding and ensure maximum energy efficiency.
Refer to your unit’s manual for guidance on optimal temperature settings. Generally, a temperature between 120°F and 125°F is recommended for most households.
Tankless water heaters are a fantastic investment for any home, offering energy efficiency and endless hot water on demand. However, like all appliances, they require regular maintenance to keep them running efficiently and prolong their lifespan.
By following our 7 tips and scheduling regular professional inspections, you can ensure that your tankless water heater provides you with hot water for many years.