Tankless water heaters need the occasional bit of maintenance to keep them running well. Sometimes the heating element will burn out and need replacing too. These kinds of things, it’s possible to repair yourself without needing to call out a technician to perform the work for a fee.
The tell-tale sign of a major issue with your best tankless water heaters are when the temperature of the water isn’t getting as warm or as hot as before. Or, it won’t heat the water at all. This is a strong indicator that the element is blown, and work must be done to resolve the issue as it is not going away.
Here is how to resolve the issue.
- Disengage the Power Supply
Switch off the power by accessing either the breaker or the control panel. Use masking tape over the switch to ensure it isn’t flipped by someone else to the ‘ON’ position again.
Use a volt meter to verify that the circuit is no longer passing a current. This ensures that you haven’t turned off the wrong breaker. Not verifying risks electrocuting yourself when touching a live wire. If in doubt, have a qualified electrician to ensure the right circuit has been disabled. Stay safe.
Let everyone in the household know what you’re doing, so they don’t attempt to flip the breaker off. Inform them before carrying out work on the heater.
- Get Some Hot Water Flowing
Open a faucet in the home somewhere for hot water to let any remaining water drain out of the heater first.
- Remove Remaining Water from the Heater
The underside of the heater will be secured by screws. Remove them. Any residual water should be drained from the underside container. Once drained and dried off, put the underside’s plate back in place and secure with the screws again.
Now turn off the water supply.
- Unhook the Wiring
Double check the electricity is turned off. Now underdo the screws to access the area where the wires connect to the heating element. There should be a black wire and a red wire to disconnect.
- Take Out the Bad Element & O-Ring
Make the heating element looser using a wrench. Put some cloth over the heating element. This avoids water drips down to the control electronics. Remove the heating element and O-ring completely.
- Replace the O-Ring and Ready the Wiring
Place the new heating element and seat the new O-ring correctly too. Now reassemble the water heater. Make sure the element fits comfortably so it won’t slide around.
Reconnect the red wire and black wire to the top of the heating element. Use a couple of screws to fix the wires in place.
- Getting Ready to Turn on the Water Supply Again
Verify that the drain plug screw is secure. Check and remove water near or on the drain plug or heating element. Then when all clear, turn on the water again.
- Ensure the Control Board is Dried OffFirst
Dry the control board to ensure no moisture has entered it.
- Refill with Water and Verify There’s No Leakage
Add water to the heater. Check for new water leaks. Should none be found, turn the power back on.