After having a tankless water heater installed by qualified water heater repair & replacement services, the homeowner is encouraged to perform routine maintenance periodically. How often you should purge the system depends on the condition of your home’s water supply, but should be done at least every 18-24 months. For larger families or locations with hard (iron- or calcium-rich) water, this process should be done more often.
Your water heater repair and replacement company will show you how the system is maintained after it is professionally installed. If you forget or have a problem, call the installers and they will be happy to assist you. The procedure is pretty simple, though, so you should be able to do it yourself.
Turn Off The System
Gas tankless water heaters may require you to turn off the main gas line coming into your home. If this is the case, make sure that you know where and how to restart the pilot lights of any devices that have them afterward. Electric tankless systems will have a dedicated circuit breaker that can be shut off without killing power to the whole house. Turn off all 3 of the valves entering the tankless water heater.
Connect the Hoses
You should have been supplied with hoses that resemble the hoses used for washing machines when your tankless system was installed. If you do not know where they are or didn’t receive them, you can buy a set at your local hardware store. In some cases, the hoses are marked red for hot, blue for cold, and uncolored or even red for the house main.
Add Decalcifier or Vinegar
You can purchase a chemical decalcifier at the hardware store, or simply pick up a few gallons of white vinegar. Vinegar will have the same cleaning effect and it is available at many retail or hardware stores. Some people prefer to use vinegar because it is more natural, others prefer the chemical version because it works a little faster.
Flush the System
Open the purge valves and flush the system. You will need a large bucket, and some systems require you to connect a sump pump to complete the process. Check your manual for the specific method your system uses, look it up by model number online, or call your contractor for assistance.
Disconnect and Restart
Close the purge valves and reverse the process you used to shut the system down. Replace all port covers, and turn the valves on one at a time. Make sure that there are no leaks after each valve, and then move on to the next one. When you have restored water to the tankless system, turn on the circuit breaker or reignite your gas system. Run the water for a few minutes as a final rinse, and your system will be ready for normal use.
Any time you feel overwhelmed by the task of flushing out your tankless system, call your trusted home plumbing contractor. That will allow you to rest assured that the job is getting done right, and a licensed and insured contractor is covering the liability for any accidental damages that could occur.
Ehret Co. Plumbing & Heating
Ehret Co. Plumbing & Heating provides 24/7 household plumbing services for homes and multifamily buildings. We pride ourselves on our professional and quality work. Contact us through our online contact form or call us at 510-528-4292 for residential plumbing services any time, any day of the week.