Tankless water heaters can be up to 34% more energy efficient than standard water heaters, but they’ll only work that well if they’re properly maintained. Tankless water heaters naturally build up minerals inside of them, which need to be flushed out occasionally to avoid wear and tear and damage.
Need a hand? To hire a professional to inspect and maintain your tankless water heater, visit Angie's List to find a service provider in your area.
Start with a visual inspection. How does your water heater look? Check the tank for signs of leaks and inspect the piping to and from the water heater. If you see any evidence of a leak, call a plumber immediately.
Clean the in-line filter trap. This filter is located on the intake line of your heater and can often be found by looking below the sign that says “water inlet.” You should see a small, round black knob that you can turn to remove the filter. To get rid of sediment, run the filter under sink or a hose.
Tankless water heaters are touted to last 20 years, but a build-up of mineral-heavy hard water will reduce the efficiency of your heater and prematurely damage it. It’s important to have the entire unit flushed once a year to remove any mineral deposits (usually calcium) that might have built up inside the boilers. You can do this yourself, but it requires time and proper equipment. To learn how, watch this video: Maintain a Tankless Water Heater
If you do not want to flush your water heater yourself, call a professional to inspect it and determine the build-up you’ve accrued. They will use two to three gallons of a low-grade acid (similar to white vinegar) and pump it through the system with a sump pump. The cost is approximately $150-$250