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Thread: Takagi water heater leaking

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member danxp's Avatar
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    Default Takagi water heater leaking

    hi...

    tried searching and didn't find much... i have a takagi tankless water heater that was professionally installed a little less than a year ago and it is leaking... it started a slow leak about a few months ago but i thought it was the pressure relief valve... the leak slowly started getting worse and just this week as i took a closer look, the leak was coming from inside the unit...

    so it finally broke today and gave a 111 error code... apparently that means there's ignition failure... so now what?

    well, it turns out that makes sense because as i opened the water heater and removed the circuit board and disconnected and removed stuff, the leak was coming from the burner assembly... i tried removing the burner assembly but that was fruitless since i didn't want to have to tinker with all the gas parts...

    any suggestions? also, how is takagi's customer service?

    thanks very much...

  2. #2
    In the trades Dana's Avatar
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    Takagi customer service is pretty good about talking home owners through diagnosis & repair, and the thing SHOULD still be under warranty, but how about calling the professional installer? The installer may warranty some of the repair labor, and should be able to diagnose & repair it more quickly.

    Water simply can't leak out of a burner assembly (there is no water in it to leak out), but can leak out of the heat exchanger directly above the burner. If it's been dripping for awhile other things could be compromised.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member danxp's Avatar
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    called takagi tech support and they instructed me to take a picture of the heat exchanger and send it to them to diagnose... they sent additional instructions to do this and that was extremely helpful and they told me it was most likely the heat exchanger after i sent them the pics of the affected part...

    fortunately it was covered under their standard warranty for parts but because i was outside the 1yr period, labor was not covered... anyway, they said they'll be shipping me a new heat exchanger (my shipping cost i
    might add)... i may have to call a pro to put that in... looks pretty complicated...

    one other thing they mentioned was that if my water was hard that it woud not be covered undered their standard warranty but their one-time-good-faith warranty... thought that was interesting to say the least...

    thanks for the help.

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    DIY Senior Member lifespeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danxp View Post
    one other thing they mentioned was that if my water was hard that it woud not be covered undered their standard warranty but their one-time-good-faith warranty... thought that was interesting to say the least...
    So you think they should warranty hard water problems?
    Lifespeed

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    DIY Senior Member Reach4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifespeed View Post
    So you think they should warranty hard water problems?
    I could see hard water causing clogging, but how would that cause leaking? I wouldn't call replacing/fixing a leaking water heater as warrantying hard water problems, but I think you are implying you would.

    I looked at one of their warranties, and it included
    "THIS WARRANTY WILL NOT COVER THE FOLLOWING: [....]Introduction of hard water measuring more than 7 grains per gallon (120 ppm) for single family domestic applications or more than 4 grains per gallon (70 ppm) for all other types of applications into the product.".
    I wonder how common such a clause is. Here is another reason to not use an on-demand water heater, if they are that fragile.

    Edit:
    Would you blame the installer for installing such a product into a home where it is not a suitable choice?

    Would you blame the salesman for selling a product not suitable for its intended use? Maybe there was not a salesman making a recommendation. Suppose there was?
    Last edited by Reach4; 11-14-2013 at 03:50 PM.

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    All tankless or embedded coil heating systems will get some mineral deposit buildup. In a tankless, they are generally delimed annually unless you have soft water. That's harder to do on an embedded coil system in a boiler and may not be required since the delta T isn't as high, but it could be. This usually isn't an issue on the boiler side, since that water (at least shouldn't) be constantly replaced...whatever was there when initially filled, gets deposited, but from then on, no new water is added, so no more mineral buildup.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member lifespeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reach4 View Post
    I could see hard water causing clogging, but how would that cause leaking? I wouldn't call replacing/fixing a leaking water heater as warrantying hard water problems, but I think you are implying you would.

    I looked at one of their warranties, and it included I wonder how common such a clause is. Here is another reason to not use an on-demand water heater, if they are that fragile.

    Edit:
    Would you blame the installer for installing such a product into a home where it is not a suitable choice?

    Would you blame the salesman for selling a product not suitable for its intended use? Maybe there was not a salesman making a recommendation. Suppose there was?
    LOL, you read a lot into one sentence! No, I don't think it is a reasonable expectation for a consumer to ask the manufacturer to repair damage caused by hard water. I said nothing about the root cause of the failed heat exchanger.

    Hard water is destructive to pipes, valves, fixtures, and especially so to hot water appliances like water heaters, dishwashers and washing machines. Sometimes the damage is gradual, but it is inevitable. Hard water can destroy tank and tankless water heaters alike. It is just slower in a tank water heater due to the larger surface area.

    Tankless water heater manufacturers are very specific about descaling the heat exchanger on a schedule if the unit is supplied with hard water. If you don't want to bother, don't buy one. Just get the tank type and let the scale slowly build up in it and degrade the efficiency over time, but without catastrophic failure. At least for awhile.

    My approach was to install a water softener ahead of my tankless water heater. Works great and protects the rest of my plumbing, fixtures and appliances as well.
    Lifespeed

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