What To Check When Your Tankless Water Heater Is Malfunctioning

Here are some tips from our Master Plumbers for when your tankless water heater isn’t working correctly

A tankless water heater installation can assist with boosting your home's value

Tankless water heaters are undoubtedly an incredible residential plumbing innovation, and this is partly because they’re low-maintenance, energy-efficient and incredibly durable. But just like all other household appliances, tankless water heaters aren’t completely immune to experiencing malfunctions and other sorts of issues.

So if your property’s tankless water heater isn’t working correctly, then you should keep the following tips in mind:

Scenario #1: You Aren’t Getting Any Hot Water!

This type of scenario is one of the most common issues that you may experience with a tankless water heater, and getting to the root of your lack of hot water will largely depend upon answering the following questions:

  • How many plumbing appliances are you running simultaneously? If you’re running multiple appliances all at once with a tankless water heater, then you could be pushing your water heater to its limits. That’s why it’s typically best to separate hot water activities as much as you can, and restart your unit if necessary to recalibrate the system.
  • Are you reaching your minimum flow rate? Your tankless water heater’s minimum flow rate will be the overall amount of water that’s needed per minute to produce hot water. It’s possible that your unit is shutting itself off as a safety precaution because you’re not asking it to provide a minimum flow rate. This issue can be resolved by simply turning up the flow rate of your faucet.
  • Is there some kind of blockage? You’ll want to check your air intake channels and vents for any signs of blockages. The good news is that the majority of tankless water heaters will notify you when something is blocked or an exhaust pipe is malfunctioning. You’ll want to make sure you burners and everything within your unit is free of debris and perfectly clean.
  • Is there something wrong with your power source? If you’re utilizing an electric water heater, then the first thing you should check is your main electrical panel. There are instances in which you could have caused a breaker to trip, which will mean you’ll need to reset the breaker. If you’re utilizing a gas-powered unit, then you should ensure that your bill is paid and that the gas valve is in the ON position.
  • Are you experiencing water heater issues during the winter? The colder months out here in Northern Utah will many times lead to frozen water pipes that can prevent your home’s hot water supply from reaching your plumbing appliances. In this situation, you’ll want to naturally and safely thaw your pipes before trying to get hot water.

Scenario #2: Your Water Supply Is Too Hot!

It’s possible that you’ll experience the exact opposite problem as scenario #1 and have too much hot water within your home. In this type of situation, you’ll want to consider the following:

  • Avoid overloading your hot water system by simultaneously using too many taps.
  • Reset your unit’s thermostat to around 120 F.
  • Make sure your temperature sensor is in the right position so you’re obtaining a better reading.
  • Clear out any blockages.

Scenario #3: Water Temperature Is Intermittent

We all know this type of situation, which is commonly referred to as a cold water sandwich. This type of situation is largely noticed during showering, partly because it’s so uncomfortable.

The most common cause of this scenario is that someone showered just before you did, so you’re originally getting the leftover hot water from the previous shower. Once that water runs out, the tankless water heater needs to re-heat itself for your shower that you’re currently taking (which leads to a quick burst of cold water).

If this is happening to you on a consistent basis, then you should reach out to our Master Plumbers to help you out. We’ll be sure to examine your unit and provide you with the solution of avoiding cold water sandwiches into the future.

Scenario #4: Your Water Is Off

Your household should always have a clear and clean water supply, so any discoloration or funky smells are a clear indication that something is wrong within your unit. Although this scenario seems really gross, it’s generally harmless and can be easily resolved with professional maintenance.

Our water supplies tend to build up minerals within our tankless water heater units over long periods of time, and when enough debris builds up you’ll end up recognizing a yellowish, brown colored water. The best way to resolve this issue is to thoroughly flush out your tankless water heater unit with a descaling solution.

In general, you should try to have your tankless water heater cleaned about every six months, and if you know you have hard water issues at your home then you can reach out to us to learn more about our vast selection of water softeners!

Scenario #5: When You Think It’s Time To Call In The Beehive Plumbing Pros To Repair Your Tankless Water Heater!

Beehive Plumbing has helped many homes and businesses in Northern Utah with tankless water heater installations and repairs, and we’ll always be more than happy to assist you with all your water heater needs.

Contact us online or call us at 801-661-8155 to speak with our team today and get to the bottom of your tankless water heater malfunctioning!

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