How to Maintain a Tankless Water Heater (Simple Tips to Follow)

The tankless water heaters are known to be timeless and never seem to be known for their maintenance costs or stuff that would make them even more costly than they are in the first place.

They supply the user with an unlimited amount of water for a long time and are known to have a long life and are known to last much longer than a traditional tank water heater.

But one thing that can’t be denied is the fact that everything needs maintenance so this question bothers many new buyers how to maintain a tankless water heater? Maintaining a tankless water heater is pretty simple in terms of usage.

They are not as complicated as a normal tank water heater and are not as hard to maintain. These tankless water heaters may not even need any maintenance or services if the water in the area is not very hard or the acidity is not very high.

If the water is not very hard or does not have many chemicals involved or mixed in, the heater’s internal parts may not accumulate a lot of sediments, which makes the entire thing less prone to need any service.

The service for a tankless water heater is very common, and the time given for such services is quite distant. For example, some tankless water heaters need service from somewhere between 6 months to 2 years.

This period of need is divided and determined by how much retention your heater has and how many times it needs to be flushed out to make sure it works perfectly until its next service.

Cleaning the Tankless Water Heater

Flushing a water heater is a term that is used in the heating industry to associate cleaning the Interior of a water heater.

This is a part of servicing water heaters from time to time. This does not take a long time, but it requires particular ways to ensure it is done correctly. If valves are not opened correctly, they can store a lot of pressure, and it can explode, causing the entire thing to blow up in your face in very literal terms.

You need very specific guidelines on how you should perform the whole procedure to make sure everything goes smoothly, or you could call a professional and get it flushed with a price.

How to flush a tankless water heater?

Tankless water heater maintenance costs are not very high, and surveys show that they can range from $80-$100, and this price is very affordable, considering the time frame between the maintenance. Anyone who can afford to buy tankless water can afford to repair a tankless water heater.

But if you don’t want to pay a handyman to repair or descale your tankless water heater, then you can learn how to do it yourself with a little help from us or maybe Youtube.

You will first need to remove your gasoline and shut off the circuit breaker if your water heater is electric. Then, co-in tiny to remove the panel or cover placed on top of the heater to keep things covered, and this should be held in place with a few screws unscrew them, and continue to do your work.

You will then need to turn off the water supply and released the pressure from the release valves. And then you will have to connect a hot water pipe to the cold water inlet where the cold water enters the system this way; you can control what goes into the system.

You will have to remove the existing cold water supply and connect a sump pump on the other end of the hose, then submerge the pump into a 5-gallon bucket filled with three gallons of white distilled vinegar.

Since you’re connecting the system so that the water is not going through the taps but merely going in a loop and clearing the pathways in the process, it’s like creating a loop for the system to circulate and get back into the bucket. If you’re going through this process with an external pump connection and not using the existing one, then you should open the valves to let the pressure out.

You can let this process sun for an hour and let the vinegar circulate through the system repeatedly, cleaning the interior surfaces and breaking down the substances that may latch onto the interior of the heater.

Vinegar is an acidic base. To clean a system correctly, you need to induce an acidic substance that makes everything break down. The continuous cycle helps the system flush out correctly.

Then you can let the system run with clean water to ensure it does not have any vinegar left inside. This entire process will take a reasonable amount of time, but it should defiantly be worth it.

How Often to Descale a Tankless Water Heater?

Now you must be thinking, where did descaling come from? Well, it’s really simple. Descaling is the process we just discussed above this: the use of vinegar as an acid-base to break down the build-up inside the heater.

This causes everything to be brand new and makes everything inside the heater very smooth and generally as if it were new. This is an important part to know if you want to know How to Maintain a Tankless Water Heater.

What Are Sump Pumps?

The word sump pump may sound weird, but these are very common in such an industry as water heaters. These pumps can quickly suck out water from the basin or from places where water may be accumulated. These are mostly used for very big-scale flooding and are not used for very small projects as a descaling process.

But there are descaling and maintenance kits explicitly dedicated to this purpose and are very affordable and small in size, which can be used and then discarded as per the user’s desires. And most such kits are available online for a very affordable price, which can change to a higher and lower price according to where the person buys them from.

Electric Tankless Water Heater Maintenance

Is this any different from a gas-powered tankless water heater? Well, the simple answer is no. These water heaters are all the same and do not require any specifics when they know how to maintain a tankless water heater.

The only thing you should be aware of is that you will need to break the gas line when it comes to a gas-powered tankless heater, and you would need to break the electrical circuit when it comes to an electric tankless water heater. More or less, you will be required to descale them both in the same way.

As an example of what typical water heater companies follow as a regulation of their cleaning systems, we will be discussing two examples of what regulations water heating companies follow in the instructions on how to maintain a tankless water heater.

Rinnai Tankless Water Heater Maintenance

Rinnai says that you will need periodic check-ups from a technician to ensure that your water heater is running smoothly and gives you the best run time and to make sure it does not die out quickly and does not give up on you & your family before it’s time.

The filter in your heating system should be checked periodically and cleaned to ensure that they are kept in top shape and are not given up on before its time.

You should also make sure that these procedures are carried out by a professional and not by someone who’s winging it with a few months or minutes of experience from the internet.

You are also supposed to tell your technical engineer to make sure they clean out the system of any lime or scale which may have been accumulated over the months due to harsh water conditions or not being kept up with. Such check-ups should keep these systems very clean and clear for the heater to last a very long time and give you the right water heating you need.

Rheem Tankless Water Heater Maintenance

Rheem tankless water heater is known to be simple heaters that are technically advanced and give the person so much for their money’s worth. These are great, and they help the person save a lot more, and they help you give your family a lot more than you would expect from any other company, and they are very simple to keep up with. They do not require a lot, and they are just as easy to flush out as my other water heater.

These are told to be flushed out by a professional and descaled from time to time to ensure they are kept in the best condition. The descaling takes place in a very familiar way as it would a normal water heater.

They do not take a lot of time and involve the same bucket and vinegar method to strip the internal system of build-up and then use a sump pump to clean the system of any extra material, which may cause the system to give out acidic water. 

This simple heater is simple to keep up with and is an example of how good a choice a tankless water heater is compared to a tank water heater.

Servicing the Tankless Water Heater

This is a simple rundown of what you need to ensure your entire system stays in tip-top shape to provide hot water for a very long time to come, and you do not have to deal with weird online ads for plumbers, which may potentially be scams.

You should remember to check up on your water heater from time to time to know when you should gear up and start the process of cleaning the entire thing. These simple processes are discussed above, which are descaling by using vinegar and part distilled water to flush out and remaining acid. Which may hinder a good nice and warm shower.

For this process, you need a sump pump, a bucket, undiluted vinegar, and hose pipes for connections to ensure that you’re connected correctly to the system.

You should always look at the manufacturer’s manual and know what you need to flush a water heater out. And with everything at hand, you should decide whether you need a professional to do the job or if you’re well equipped to do it yourself. However, most manufacturers suggest owners hire professionals to do the job.

Because even the slightest sloppiness can cause a huge blunder and make the person pay hospital bills. Yup, you heard it hospital bills. You might ask how. Well, a built-up steam pressure can explode and may cause you a very severe burn. Which does certainly need looking after and will lead to you needing a lot of care.

How Much does it Cost to Maintain a Water Heater? 

Well, according to a lot of surveys, it doesn’t cost a lot. Some people would like to get the job done for $80 and even go up to $100. This counts for both labor and all the cost it takes to repair the entire ending and flush stuff out. They can add additional costs for more and new installations.

The best option is to have it written down with the plumber to ensure you have the quota written. This way they won’t overcharge you with any extra charges.

Check out this video to know about the Annual Tankless Water Heater Maintenance.

With years of experience under his belt, Adam decided to put his water heater knowledge to work. By providing high-quality content and expert guides, Adam hopes to help anyone looking for expert water heater advice.