If you’ve seen a tank model water heater–which you probably have–then you know it is large, pretty noticeable, and can even be a little noisy too. In other words, it’s going to be difficult not to pay some attention to this system, if this is what’s in your home. You probably even know that it needs occasional professional maintenance from a qualified plumber!
Why? Because scaling… the buildup of minerals from hard water… can have a negative impact on it, causing issues such as water pressure problems, temperature fluctuations, and eventually even system corrosion. A tank water heater needs to be “flushed” out to get rid of sediment builup.
Of course, since it doesn’t have a tank, a tankless system doesn’t need the same level of care, right?
Meh, not so right. In fact, much of the maintenance we do for conventional tank water heaters is pretty similar to tankless water heater maintenance. Read on to learn more about why tankless water heaters need maintenance too.
Scaling, and Its Effect On Your Water Heater
Scaling affects a tankless water heater in such a way that could lead to its early breakdown if you skip out on routine maintenance. Hard water, like we mentioned above, causes this problem. This is water with a high level of minerals in it–namely, calcium, magnesium, and sometimes iron too. These minerals are harmless to us, but not harmless to your plumbing system.
When mineral deposits get left behind in your plumbing system or your pipes, it’s called scaling, which can collect on and stick to the heat exchanger of the tankless water heater. The heat exchanger is the component actually responsible for warming your water, so it’s obviously very important! This component has to be clean so water can efficiently be heated. Scaling can also prevent the burners from doing their job, which can lead to an overworked and therefore broken down tankless water heater.
When Is the Best Time to Schedule Tankless Water Heater Maintenance?
The short answer to this is, “it depends.” There are some cases where it’s best to schedule water heater maintenance once a year, at least. It doesn’t matter so much what time of the year it is as it does how frequently you’re having this service done.
If hard water isn’t a big problem in your area, or if you’re tackling your hard water problems with a whole-house water softener, then you might not need tankless water heater maintenance as often, but it shouldn’t be skipped forever. Maintenance is the best way to ensure your tankless system operates as efficiently and effectively as possible all throughout its lifespan–which can be up to 2 decades if well cared for!
Of course, if you’ve had your system diligently maintained, repaired as needed, and otherwise taken good care of it but it seems to have problems frequently, then it may be time to give us a call to talk about your replacement options. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team!