Tankless Step by Step Guide

Tankless Water Heater Installation

Increasingly American homeowners are switching from traditional water heaters toward the highly efficient tankless heaters.

For some, they choose to change the heaters themselves rather than hire the services of a professional plumber.

Even though it’s possible for you to install your tankless water heater by yourself, it is not advisable unless you are totally positive you can do the task and have the correct instruments for it.

With tankless water heaters, you can significantly save on daily energy and water use, little wonder when conventional systems begin to display aging signs, a lot of people quickly upgrade.

In this article, we discuss in detail how with proper guidance, you can single-handedly mount a tankless water heater completely.

Note: This post talks about installing tankless water heaters for the whole house, rather than point of use heaters, which are fairly easily installed close to the fixture for which they are heating water.

Step 1: Preparation and Safety Precaution

One of the most complicated DIY (Do It Yourself) plumbing tasks we’ve ever discussed in this blog is how to install a tankless water heater all by yourself.

In general, tankless water heaters need a greater power supply and an exhaust system that is very wide, and you could possibly find yourself working more than you originally thought.

In addition, a common gas supply line material, CSST (Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing), could get destroyed or broken in some environmental conditions, complicating your project the more.

To find out if you’re equal to the task, continue reading the rest of this post and if you discover you’re not up to it, call an expert to do the installation for you. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Let’s proceed to the tools needed for the work. For tankless water heater installation, the unit will come with most of the instruments and fixtures needed:

In addition to the new tankless heater, the tools and instructions that come with it as a package are;

  • A screwdriver
  • Gas line connector
  • CSST supply line
  • New water lines (as needed)
  • Heat-resistant sealant
  • Hanger brackets for the water lines
  • A bucket

Throughout the stage of preparation, you ought to also understand construction regulations in your city and state to make sure you’ve got the permission to install a tankless water heater, and a CSST pipe, in your home.

Step 2: Removing the Old Heater Unit

As expected, if you want to install a tankless water heater, the first thing you need to do is remove the old conventional heater. Begin by switching off your home’s water supply and then disconnect the old tanker from the line that supplies the water.

It’s possible there could be water remaining in the supply line; bringing a bucket on-deck will prove useful at this point.

After that, the next thing to do is to detach the heater from its source of heat. If it’s an electric heater, simply unplug the unit from its outlet whereas for gas heaters, turn off the gas supply valve before proceeding.

As soon as you’ve totally disconnected your old water heater from all its power and water supply lines, throw it away in conformity with the laws of the area.

In Sacramento and the entire state of California, it is against the law to simply trash old water heaters because they normally have pilot light sensors – which contain mercury.

Alternatively, you are required to get in touch with a recycling and waste management agency in your vicinity to help discard your old unit. You can find a list of Californian dangerous waste agencies here.

Step 3: Mount to the Wall and Connect Utilities

To install the new heater on your wall, carefully adhere to the instructions of the manufacturer and make use of the hardware that came with it. Ensure that the heater is supported appropriately and fastened to your wall.

Next, attach the water supply line to your mounted unit (or install a new one, if needed), and utilize hanger brackets to grip the pipe firmly and prevent it from touching walls and other surfaces.

If you are installing a tankless water heater powered by gas, kindly adhere to the following instructions:

With the gas turned off, install a gas line connector to your existing line, and run a CSST supply line to the other end. Ensure the gas line remains turned off, and attach the CSST line to your tankless water heater.

Make sure all nuts and gas line connections are tightened, and then switch on the gas. At this phase, I’ll suggest you a check for gas leaks or loose fittings using a gas sniffer.

If there are no such leaks, you can turn on the gas as instructed by the manufacturer and test your heater. It could take awhile to heat up water initially on the first use.

For tankless heaters that are powered by electricity, all that is required of you is to plug into a power supply immediately the water line is linked.

After this is done, you can test your heater and enjoy a more efficient hot water heating at a lesser cost compared with a traditional heater.

Check out the Rinnai Ultra Series Water Heaters
Also, check out the Navien Tankless Water Heaters