More homeowners are beginning to consider making a switch from their traditional water heaters to a tankless water heater. There are several reasons why the tankless water heater has become a favorite for most homeowners, some of which include the flexibility of choosing the desired powering method, whether the gas-fueled or the electric tankless water heater. In addition to this, the tankless water heater is more efficient compared to the traditional unit as it delivers on-demand hot water without having to consume more power to keep water stored in the tank heated up. Considering the longevity, the tankless water heater can last as long as two decades with proper maintenance while the traditional unit lasts only between 10 to 12 years. To ensure that you get the best of your tankless water heater through comprehensive maintenance, Shower Insider explains how to fix it and the common maintenance practices you should imbibe to improve the lifespan of the unit.
If you are a DIY enthusiast, some of the common problems associated with the tankless water heater like the collection of minerals that erode the inside walls of the heating chambers will require attention, below are some of the information you need to attempt such maintenance services like a professional.
Steps To DIY Maintenance Of Your Tankless Water Heater
Begin By Turning Off The Energy Source
When attempting to perform maintenance checks and service on your tankless water heater, it is recommended that you take adequate steps to ensure that all safety precautions are properly observed. The biggest of these safety precautions is to ensure that the tankless water heater’s energy source is turned off. Doing this will save you from electrocution and other electricity-related hazards that may cause injury or mortal harm. If your tankless water heater uses electricity as its main source of power, be sure to disconnect it from the socket and if it makes use of gas, be sure to disconnect it from the power source. Be sure that the tankless water heater is cooled down before attempting any maintenance checks or services.
Close All The Water Valves Attached To The Unit
It is also recommended that you close all water valves leading into the tankless water heater. This ensures that you can adequately pay attention to the water heater without having to worry about getting wet or burns from hot water. In most cases, there are three water values which are color labeled attached to the tankless water heater. The blue valve signifies cold water, the red for hot water, and the third controls water movement from the mains supply.
Disengage The Purge Port Valve Caps From Their Respective Purge Valves
Proceeding into the core of the maintenance service, it is recommended that you slowly and carefully disengage the valves from their respective plugged in area. Each valve resembles a letter ‘T’ and removing the valves relieves the pressure build-up in the valves while also preventing hot water from rushing out of the valve. As a safety precaution, ensure that the hot water valve caps are safely shut off first to protect your skin from burns.
Attach The Hosing Line To Each Valve
You may need to buy a hosing line if your water heater is lacking one. Connect the hoses to a sump pump that will flush and discharge water from the water heater’s cold and hot valve. This securely eliminates the presence of water.
Open The Port Valves And Add Vinegar
Twist the port valves to open it up. Add 9.46 liters of unadulterated white vinegar into the tankless water heater for cleaning. Organic cleaners are more recommended for cleaning the tankless water heater because chemicals can be harmful to your skin especially when not properly flushed out.
Ensure that the drain water is flushed for about 45 minutes to get all the white vinegar out of the heater and consult with the product manual for additional maintenance practices.
Flushing Your Tankless Water Heater
Regular maintenance is recommended by all manufacturers. As part of the recommended routine maintenance, cleaning and flushing are top on the list as they are essential for protecting the unit from chemical build-up and lime deposits.
To Clean The Tankless Water Heater
- Turn off the unit or disconnect from the power source
- Open water taps to let water pressure out
- Disconnect the water inlet and outlet pipes
- Connect the inlet of the heater to the pump’s outlet
- Connect heater’s outlet and submerge pipe’s end into a bucket of descaling solution
- Connect the pump’s inlet using the third pipe and submerge pipe into a bucket
- Start pump and allow it run for about 30 minutes while inspection for leaks.
- Run clean water through the unit after descaling for about 10 minutes
- Reconnect water heater
- Open all water valves and connect the heater to a power source.