Purchasing a tankless water heater is exciting. Having an endless supply of hot water, without the energy loss associated with your old storage tank water heater, saves money and keeps your home more comfortable. But tankless water heaters are just like any other piece of HVAC equipment you use every day: they need planned maintenance to keep them running at peak efficiency.
On average, tankless systems have a lifespan of around 20 years, which is 8 years longer than the typical storage tank lasts. However, if they’re not properly maintained, they can give out much sooner.
Planned maintenance can:
- Maintain rated performance and efficiency
- Ensure gas systems are properly vented
- Repair damage caused by hard or acidic water
- Correct mechanical and electrical problems that could prevent you from getting hot water
- Keep your unit efficient and clean so any warranties you have remain valid
Over time, your system will be affected by the quality of the water in your home. Many homes in the Greater Cleveland area have hard water, and some have problems with acidic water. Hard water eventually leads to the build-up of scale and staining. Acidic water damages most metal parts in your plumbing system and appliances.
Hard water contains a certain amount of dissolved particulates. As particulates drop out of suspension, they accumulate on surfaces- this is the same material that you find in the bottom of your tea kettle on your stove. Build-up can also accumulate inside copper tubing in a tankless water heater, and over time this can cause the heat exchanger to overheat. In extreme cases, the system will stop working, and won’t run again until a technician corrects the problem. This build-up up will also reduce the unit's efficiency and lower its ability to create hot water.
During planned maintenance your technician will, among other things, use a flush kit to run a cleansing solution through your tankless system that will eliminate the scaling and build-up. The possibility of flushing tankless systems clean is another reason they are wiser investments than storage tank water heaters, which can’t be easily cleaned or repaired. Most manufacturers of tankless units recommend that the units be evaluated for flushing every 1-3 years depending upon water quality
Make sure your tankless water heater continues to be something to get excited about in years to come. Call P.K. Wadsworth to schedule planned maintenance today. We’re happy to serve Greater Cleveland homeowners!
Photo Credit: Gee