Legacy Plumbing has partnered with top manufacturers to provide customized solutions for tankless water heating. Legacy Plumbing is committed to educating customers on the pros and cons to tankless water heaters. Our ultimate goal is to provide water heating systems that suit each customer. Whether you need diagnostics, repair or replacement, our team of trained technicians is ready to help!
- Diagnostics and Repair
- Tankless Water Heater Maintenance
- Tankless Water Heater Replacement
- Tankless Water Heater Installation
- Tank to Tankless Conversion Installation
- Water Heating System Consultation
The Legacy of Tankless
The concept of tankless water heating has roots as far back as the late 1800's. Unfortunately, early systems had multiple issues, including energy inefficiency and high operation costs. It wasn’t until the 1990's that tank-less water heating became an option for American households. Since then, manufacturers have improved tankless systems where they are now affordable and reliable. As an authorized dealer and with certified technicians, Legacy Plumbing is experienced on all tankless water heating systems.
Diagnostics and Repair
All tankless water heaters, regardless of brand, share quite a few similarities. However, other components are unique, even from one model to the next. For this reason, Legacy Plumbing coordinates closely with manufacturers when troubleshooting, instead of simply replacing parts and hoping that it solves the problem. After all, we’ve found that fixing the system correctly the first time tends to save our customers a significant amount of stress and money!
When tankless water heaters rapidly warm up water flowing through them, scale (that is, hard deposits of calcium and other minerals) can build up within their components. These deposits may cause the water flow to slow down, thus forcing a system to work harder in order to function properly. In the short term, this can raise cost of operation. In the long term, it can cause irreparable wear to the system, requiring a heat exchanger replacement. And for most tankless water heaters, this type of damage and systemic failure is NOT covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Properly maintained tankless water heaters can last for over 20 years. Improperly maintained, and your system could need replaced in as little as 6 or 7 years.
The frequency at which a system requires maintenance can vary according to three factors:
- The amount of hot water used.
- The “hardness,” or mineral content, of your water.
- The temperature set on the tankless water heater.
In most households, descaling the system and inspecting it once a year is adequate. But larger households may need servicing twice a year, while empty-nesters or single-occupant households who utilize a water softener could easily go two years or more between maintenance sessions. It’s worth mentioning that some manufacturers have begun adding sensors to specific models that monitor the scale build up and alert users when service is needed; this mechanism can greatly cut down on confusion, and we strongly encourage homeowners to defer to the sensor when it tells you that a system checkup is needed.
Tankless Water Heater Replacement
Water Heating System Consultation
We believe that customers should make their own decisions based on the facts, the available options, and their personal budget. When considering a tankless water heater, it’s absolutely critical to do your research, check prices, and weigh pros and cons. Not every tankless system will be a good “fit” for every family and living situation.
- What is my current system capable of delivering? Most tank-style heaters range from 30K to 50k BTUs. Most tankless heaters, on the other hand, require 199K BTUs. When switching from tank to tankless, it is very likely that gas upgrades will need to be performed. If you’re unsure of your current system capacity, a BTU load chart can help you figure this out.
- What is the normal temperature of (unheated) water coming into my home? Tankless water heaters typically heat water to about 35°F above the incoming water temperature; different models have different “standard” flow rates, and the maximum flow rate of an individual unit can slow down when the incoming water is more than 35°F colder than the thermostat setting. In other words, if your incoming water temperature is too cold, the system may throttle your flow rate to compensate, as it needs more time to heat the water as it passes through. As such, tankless heaters may be impractical for homeowners who live in especially cold climates. Systems that utilize tanks do not have this same limitation. Their performance doesn’t suffer noticeably as a result of them taking in especially cold water, which makes them well-suited for colder climates.
- What will the venting requirements be, and how much will venting cost? Tankless water heaters need considerably more fresh, combustible air to function properly than tank-style heaters. The type and size of exhaust venting is also much different from a tank-style heater, which may necessitate the removal and replacement of old venting. And this, in turn, may require alterations to your home’s roofing or masonry.
- What kind of performance am I hoping to get out of my heater? Tank-style water heaters can provide a great deal of full-temperature hot water to many fixtures at the same time, and hot water will flow until their reserve of heated water is depleted. Once the hot water runs out, however, you must wait until the heater brings more water to the right temperature. Tankless water heaters, on the other hand, can deliver heated water endlessly, but they have limitations when it comes to temperature increases and flow rate. In order to properly size a tankless water heating system, it is necessary to evaluate the number of fixtures it will serve and the normal demands that will be placed on the system. In your household, how common is it for two people to be showering in different bathrooms at the same time? What about multiple people showering one after the other? Don’t forget to factor in appliances like clothes washing machines and dishwashers, too; how often do you use these while also running hot water in a sink or bathtub?
Tankless water heating systems can be a great investment for certain households, and the evolution of tankless system technology has made them more practical and accessible than ever before. With that said, they’re not for everyone, and they’re absolutely NOT maintenance free! That’s why we strongly recommend doing your research BEFORE committing to a tankless “life.”
Is a tankless water heater right for you? What would it take to install a tankless system in your home? And if tankless water heating IS a viable option, what sort of model and capacity should you look for? Experts at Legacy Plumbing can help you find the answers to these questions and much, much more! Talk to one of our technicians today.