Before Learning HOW to Flush a Tankless Water Heater, First Know WHY
Information on how to flush a tankless water heater is included under “regular maintenance” as part of the paperwork you receive with a water heater. Remember? ALL appliances we purchase include maintenance and warranty information.
But how many of us actually READ it? And how many of us actually follow the maintenance procedures? So before going into the “how to flush a tankless water heater”, we’re going to explain reasons for actually doing it.
What is the Purpose of “Flushing” or “Descaling” a Tankless Water Heater?
Tap water contains a certain amount of calcium, magnesium and other minerals. The “harder” the water, the higher the mineral content. These minerals accumulate inside a tankless water heater’s heat exchanger. At first, the mineral scale will prevent the water heater from functioning efficiently. If not flushed out regularly, however, over time the minerals will literally eat away and corrode the inside of the water heater.
What is Used to Flush or Descale Mineral Buildup in a Tankless Water Heater?
Like mineral buildup in other water appliances, pure white vinegar is most often used to flush out or descale the minerals. Specific directions for each brand and model, vary slightly. Some manufacturers recommend a commercial descaling product. Pure white vinegar, however, is safest.
You also need a submersible pump to correctly flush a tankless water heater. It’s a process that takes about an hour. Best left to professionals. However, there are “flushing kits” available on line for about $160. Still though, the kit only includes tools, not a professional plumber who knows how to use them correctly!
Your Warranty May be Void if Your Tankless Water Heater isn’t Flushed Regularly
That’s right! Periodically flushing your tankless water heater is part of regular maintenance. Failure to follow the manufacturers’ maintenance requirements voids the warranty. That’s true for most tankless water heaters.
If a tankless water heater’s failure is caused by a failure to “descale” the mineral build on your water heater’s heat exchanger, your warranty may not protect your investment. Check your manufacturer’s warranty to see if that applies to your tankless water heater. If so, that’s a significant investment at risk! After all, tankless water heaters cost about twice that of tank-style water heaters.
So protect your warranty and your investment!
Flush a Tankless Water Heater at Least Once a Year
Flushing a tankless water heater at least once a year is critical. Here’s why: Calcium and other minerals in tap water corrodes a water heater’s heat exchanger. That corrosion shortens the life of a tankless water heater.
If you Live in Fallbrook, Bonsall, Oceanside, Vista or Temecula Flush Your Tankless Water Heater Twice a Year
Tap water hardness impacts water heaters. The harder the water, the faster calcium and mineral scales build up and corrode a water heater.
Any water hardness measurement over 180 mg/L is considered the hardest water. In this area, Fallbrook scores the highest hardness level at 205. Oceanside isn’t far behind at 172 and falls within the “hard” range. Vista tap water measures 170 mg/L. Temecula and Rainbow score “moderately hard” at 119. (Soft water is under 60 mg/L).
Our hard water here is also another reason for installing a whole-house water treatment or water softener system.
Failing to flush your tankless water heater also makes your tankless water heater less efficient, increasing your energy bills. In fact, the department of energy’s website states “periodic maintenance can extend the life of your water heater and minimize efficiency loss.” Moreover, water heating is the second-largest energy expense in our homes, amounting to up to 18% of our utility bills.
Flushing a Tankless Water Regularly Helps Extend its Life and Reduce Energy Costs
So anything we can do to improve a water heater’s efficiency and extend its life saves us money! And saving money and reducing stress of potential plumbing issues is what this website is all about. That’s a part of what makes us the most affordable plumber in the area (read more about other ways we prove we’re the most affordable plumber.
Here’s what a tankless water heater’s heat exchanger looks like when minerals build up, causing corrosion.
How to Flush and Descale a Noritz Brand Tankless Water Heater
We recommend a Noritz brand hot water heater for most folks. There are many models to choose from, and we can help you choose the one that best fits your needs. Since this is the brand we most often install, we’re experts at flushing and descaling them.
Here’s a video produced by the Noritz manufacturer that describes flushing process. BUT USE THIS VIDEO AS A LEARNING TOOL ONLY. DIFFERENT MODELS REQUIRE SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT PROCEDURES.
Go to the Noritz website and locate your specific model for exact directions.
Tankless Water Heater Flushing Best Left to Professionals at Least First Time
Let Us Flush Your Tankless Water Heater For You – at least the first time it needs flushing. During the flushing process, watch us. Then you’ll know if you want to do it yourself the next time. Think of it as a risk-free way to learn how to flush your tankless water heater the right way.
It can take about an hour to perform the flushing and descaling process properly. Looks simple in the video, but it does take time and a bit of technical know how.
The process for the Noritz brand is slightly different from other brands and even has specific directions for each one of the models. Flushing/descaling directions for most brands start with completely turning off power and even switching off circuit breakers.
You’ll find “tankless water heater flushing kits” on line for around $160. Then you’ll need to educate yourself on how to use the kit. If you call us to flush your tankless water heater the first time and watch how we do it, that’s educational as well as ensuring the very best descaling.
Check Your Manufacturer’s Website for Specific Tankless Water Heater’s Model for Specific Flushing Directions
We’re experts on ALL brands of both tank-style and tankless water heaters. In fact, we’ve installed and serviced more brands and models of water heaters than probably any other plumber in the area. So we’ll flush and descale your tank or tankless water heater correctly and efficiently.
Sure, there are other videos and websites with generic information on flushing a tank or tankless water heater. However, it is BEST to rely on your manufacturer’s specific directions. You don’t want to get this wrong. It’s an important investment. You want to maximize its energy efficiency and protect its longevity.