How to Deal with a Leaking Tankless Water Heater
Tankless water heater is slowly becoming the choice of most households who want to lower their electrical bills, and decrease their carbon footprint. Certainly it is more energy efficient compared to the traditional tanked water heater that needs to store gallons hot water, and is less likely to leak but it does not mean it will not leak.
One of the issues that might prop up when using tankless water heaters are possible leaks. This is because like any other home fixture, it is also subject to wear and tear. It will age as well, and has only an intended lifespan of about ten years or more. There are a host of reasons why it can possibly leak, but the most important thing is, leaks should be addressed right away.
Why tankless water heaters leak
Tankless water heaters can leak water for several reasons. One of the first thing a homeowner should do upon noticing the leak is to put a pan under it so that it will not cause any damage to the structure around it like rotting or molds. He should then check the number of years the water heater has been operational.
If the water heater has been used for the past ten years or more then the homeowner should consider the option of replacing it as the problem may be due to wear and tear. It could also be possible that it is more practical to replace than to repair given the age of the tankless water heater unit.
If the unit is relatively new, it could also be possible that it is improperly installed. For newly used units that exhibit leaking, the initial possible cause for leaking explored by technicians is the possibility that it is not installed the right way.
Apart from improper installation, it is also possible that the tankless water heater has been improperly vented. This occurrence only means that condensation could be occurring within the unit and it is causing the leak. This should be addressed by a professional immediately because prolonging this type of issue may cause failure and major damage to the unit.
Type of water
The type of water can also impact the operation of a tankless water heater. For instance, hard water can cause a build-up that could affect the water pressure and movement within the unit. When this happens, leaks can surely occur. The mineral deposits that might have accumulated within the system may also cause the unit to work harder, overheat, and eventually leak. Again another serious concern that should be addressed by a professional right away. This meantime can be prevented by routine maintenance checks specifically flushing out of sedimentation and build-ups within the unit.
Acidic water can also pose an issue that could affect the optimal operation of a tankless water heater. Acidic water with a pH that is lower than seven are very likely to cause pinholes within the system that could eventually give way to leaking. If the water supplied in a home is acidic or hard, homeowners should ask a professional plumber to install devices that could address the hard water or acidic water issue within the home.
The pipe connections that lead to the water heater, and out to the water sources inside the home may be failing hence the leaks. It is important that a licensed professional get to check this immediately so that the problem can be resolved right away.
Loose connections within the piping system, or valves that have not been sealed thoroughly may cause the leakage. These should all be checked. The homeowner can do a visual inspection and report to the plumber whether the pipes and valves are joined properly. Plumbing Water Heater Fix
The water pressure inside the home can play a huge role in possible water leaks in a tankless heating system. For instance, too strong a water pressure can damage the system especially when there is much sedimentation and build up within the unit, and the plumbing fixtures where hot water pours out. Lower the water pressure inside the home so that the mineral deposits within the tank and the plumbing fixtures should not cause leaking.
Dealing with tankless water heater leaks
The first thing a homeowner should do upon discovering that his tankless water heater is leaking, is to immediately turn off the unit and the power supply in it. Be it gas pipe or electricity, it should be turned off for the meantime. He should then put a pan underneath the leak to catch the leaking water so that it will not cause any damage to the flooring or even the other structures surrounding it.
After doing the initial measures, the homeowner should then check out the manufacturer’s warranty and avail of the services if ever the unit is still under it. The manufacturer will likely have included a guide for troubleshooting possible problems that could be encountered in the use of the tankless water heater, and the homeowner should check this out too and follow the manufacturer’s instructions accordingly. United Association
If the water heater is beyond warranty already then the most logical thing to do is to call for the services of a licensed plumbing contractor that can help with the repair of tankless water heaters. Most plumbing contractors offer this service, including routine maintenance for tankless water heater systems.
The plumber can then advice the issue can still be addressed through a repair, or it will be more practical to replace the unit.