You've invested in a new tankless water heater. Congratulations. You made a wise choice and you're probably enjoying having limitless hot water at the ready. But how do you protect that investment?
The best place to begin is at the source: your water. Specifically, the hardness of your water. Water hardness is the biggest contributing factor to failing tankless water heaters. Water high in solids can create scale build-up in your tankless water heater, potentially causing it to leak or fail much earlier than it should.
In brief, here’s what you need to know:
What is water hardness and how do I find out what my water hardness level is?
Water hardness comes from mineral deposits (calcium and magnesium are the two most common) found in its originating source. If you live in the Twin Cities metro area, your water likely originates from the Mississippi River or a local lake in your area. The water goes through an intensive filtration and purification process that allows it to be drinkable, but can still have significantly high levels of Total Dissolved Solids (or TDS) by the time it comes to your home.
Most cities publish a water quality report on the city government website where you can find your water hardness level.
TDS levels can be measured in grains per gallon, or parts per million. If you have a rating of over 10.5 grains per gallon or over 180 parts per million, that could be considered “Very hard”.
What can I do about the water hardness?
If you don’t already have one, consider installing a home water softener system. The water coming to your home then would go through an additional purification process brings your TDS level down to nearly zero - leaving essentially no scale build-up in your tankless water heater.
An investment in a home water softener system can save you money in the long run. It can make your tankless water heater last longer, and even your entire plumbing system. And it can reduce your yearly maintenance from 2-4 flushes to just 1.
What else can I find out in my cities Water Quality Report?
Every city's water quality report varies. But those that offer thorough reports will list the contaminants in the water and its sources.
Some chemicals you’ll see listed are not necessarily bad. For example, you will see chlorine listed as a contaminant. Chlorine is used to purify the harmful pathogens in the water that could cause illness. There is strict regulation on the amount of chlorine that can be used to purify the water, and some water sources need to use more chlorine than others. If you live in an area that rates high chlorine contaminants, consider getting a home water filtration system that removes almost all of the chlorine from your water.
How do I learn more about water softeners and water filtration systems?
Give us a call, or shoot us a text. Our expert technicians are standing by to answer your questions.
We’ve installed thousands of water heaters and can help you decide what might be needed in your situation to get the most life out of your tankless water heater