Tankless Water Heater Installations: How Long Should It Take?

Thanks to today’s tankless water heater, having the perfect bath—especially early in the morning—has never been easier. More and more people nowadays have decided to switch their water heating systems over to tankless due to the long-term energy bill savings. If you’re ready to jump on the bandwagon, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the installation process

To justify the time it takes to install your new water heating units, you should know the pre-installation and installation procedures involved.

Preparation for Tankless Water Heater

Prior the actual installation, it’s important for your hired contractor to do all the necessary preparations so you don’t suffer for days or weeks without hot water. These preparations may include the installation of a new gas meter, damper (for cold areas), new flue system, and possible electrical wiring adjustments.

Tankless water heaters need gas because they mostly come in operable gas models (propane or natural gas). You may need to check with your gas company if you need to upgrade your meter to accommodate the additional usage.

If you are to install a new gas line for your water heater, you should hire a licensed, professional plumber to do the installation. Additionally, an indoor gas unit needs venting and a condensate drain due to the amount of condensation the unit produces. In cold climate areas, it’s also advisable to install a damper to stop cold air from returning inside.

You may also need electrical wiring adjustments, depending on the gas unit’s power requirements. For instance, your existing outlet can only accommodate 120-volt electrical power whereas your unit needs 240-volt electrical supply. In this case, make sure to contact a professional electrician rather than trying to DIY the upgrade.

Removal and Disposal of Your Old Water Heater

tankless water heaterAfter your preliminary preparations are complete, you can proceed with the removal of your old water heater. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to let plumbing experts do this job for you for faster and safer procedure.

Normally, you will have to shut off the valves on the water lines connected to your existing water heater. Prepare a pipe wrench or channel-type pliers to disconnect them from the unit, and then open the valve to drain the tank.

Regarding disposal, your plumbing company may offer to take care of the old unit after the installation of the new one. Proper disposal is normally part of their service package. However, other companies may charge extra for this part, so it’s best to ask just to be sure.

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Installation of the Unit

Your tankless water heater can be installed flush against plaster or dry wall. They may also be mounted between studs. Just make sure to follow the water heater installation instructions detailed in the manual.

On average, the total installation time should take 4 to 6 hours, depending on the tankless water heater unit. You should, however, take into consideration the preliminary preparations and other potential problems during the process. If time is an issue, you can request for the installation to happen while you’re out of the house or at work. If you opt for this, though, it would be best to leave a trusted friend or family member behind to check on the plumbers from time to time.

Scheduling of Preventive Maintenance Inspections

Considering that this water heating system is a pretty pricey investment, you want to fully optimize its performance for years and years to come. It’s therefore imperative that you schedule annual tune-ups with your plumbing company while you can still personally talk to them.

The inspection will normally call for the assessment of your filters, valves, anode rod, and power supply for the heater. At times, it may also be necessary to remove sediments that have built up in the tank.

Sacrificing a few hours for a long-term investment that is bound to save you a lot of money on water usage doesn’t sound like a bad deal. For a safer and faster installation of your tankless water heater, don’t skimp on professional installation services.




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