Common Problems of Tankless Water Heaters and How to Troubleshoot Them

November 7th, 2019

Tankless Water Heaters are gaining popularity recently due to its efficiency and cost saving potential. It is efficient because of its secured configurations that do not allow a catastrophic leak. Similarly, it saves 27 to 50 percent of fuel costs as compared to its gas-fired tank counterpart. It is cost-effective because it only heats water upon demand.

However, like many other innovation that came before it, there are certain situations that can become a problem to the user when dealing with tankless water heater. Although these are rare occurrences, it is important to be one step ahead and analyse them before it happens to you. Below are the most common problems of tankless water heaters and how to troubleshoot them.

Mineral Build-up

Mineral Build-up is possible for both traditional and tankless water heaters. Water heating systems are normally exposed to large amounts of water regularly. These amounts vary in mineral content with hard water as the most concentrated and soft water as the least. Hard water is mainly composed of Calcium and Magnesium that causes a scaly build-up in tankless water heaters. This build-up blocks the valves thereby impairing the function of tankless water heaters.

The said mineral build-up can be fixed by cleaning and flushing the tankless water heater with a de-scaling cleaning kit. It is advisable to do so once every six months. Some tankless water heaters have their own specific de-scaling cleaning kit. However, this particular cleaning material can be used regardless of the tankless water heater’s make and model.

System Overload

If the tankless water heater shuts down when multiple taps are being used at the same time, then it is experiencing a system overload. Each tankless water heater unit has a specific operating capacity that serves as the system’s threshold. If the unit exceeds its threshold then it stops working. For instance, if the hot water is used in multiple showers while the kitchen tap is running, there is a huge chance that the system will shut down unless one of the outlets stops its use.

A system overload can be solved by limiting the number of outlets used at a certain time. This will prevent the entire tankless water heater unit from overloading. If the unit often experiences such overload, then it might be best to consider an upgrade. Since more outlets are being used at once, a tankless water heater with greater capacity must be purchased.

Cold Water Sandwich

One of the most common occurrence involving tankless water heaters is when the shower turns from hot-cold-hot again. This incident is known as the cold water sandwich. This is often experienced when you immediately follow a previous shower. Once you open the tap, you will instantly experience hot water for a few seconds only for it to switch again to cold water. Tankless water heaters can function much faster than tanked models, however, they are not exactly instantaneous. This explains the cold water sandwich situation. During back to back showers, after the end the first shower, some heated water will be trapped inside the pipes. This explains the heated water that comes instantly during the second shower. Once the trapped water runs out, there will be a gush of unheated one – thus explaining the cold water that follows shortly.

This type of problem is not fixable by any type of repair. You will just have to let the unheated water flow in order for the tankless water heater to perform its function.

If you have any tankless water heater problems, Bexley Hot Water Repairs is around to help you. We offer a generally reliable water repair services for your convenience. We have a qualified licensed technician that will instantly check and repair your water heater if you contact us at once.

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