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Can Tankless Hot Water Heaters Leak and Damage Your Home?

Can tankless hot water heaters leak and damage your home

Many of us have experienced the sudden mess that can come from a leaking traditional hot water heater. Avoiding this is just one of many reasons that tankless hot water heaters are so popular. After you install one, it’s often thought that your new tankless water heaters won’t leak, and your home is immune from water damage from them. However, water flows through them - so leaks are still possible.

In this article, we will explain how tankless water heaters work, the benefits they offer, the issues that can cause them to leak, and how to get help if you experience water damage from one in your home.

What are Tankless Hot Water Heaters?

Tankless water heaters work by pumping cold water from the main plumbing supply line into a unit with a high-powered burner and a heat exchanger. The result is instant, limitless hot water on demand. They have many advantages compared to traditional holding tank hot water heaters. Here are just a few:

Size: They are smaller than traditional tanks

Flexibility: Due to their small size, they can bring hot water to unique spaces

Less Limitations: They can provide almost unlimited hot water, on demand

Lifespan: They last at least twice as long as traditional tanks

Energy Efficiency: Heating water on-demand uses less power than keeping gallons of water hot in a tank

Tankless hot water heaters can last from 12 to 20 years, provided that they are installed correctly, and you follow the recommended maintenance schedule created by the manufacturer. It’s easy to see why they are a popular Connecticut home upgrade in 2022.

Can a Tankless Hot Water Heater Leak?

It’s true that tankless hot water heaters won’t cause the same sudden, messy failures that a leak in a big holding tank can. However, being tankless does not mean they will never leak. It may seem confusing, due to the fact that they don’t hold any water, but there are still components that can get damaged and allow water to escape. Here are some of the reasons why tankless water heaters leak.

Improper Installation

This is one of most common sources of leaks within the first or second year that you have your new tankless hot water heater. Make sure you get help with the conversion from a qualified professional.

Incorrect Venting or Clogged Vents

If your new tankless water heater’s venting wasn’t done according to the manufacturer’s instructions, or if a vent gets blocked, then condensation can build up inside the water heater. This can cause your whole system to fail, and requires professional repair.

Joint Leaks from Pressure

Most tankless waters heaters have relief valves to help drain your system, but some don’t. This can cause pressure build up inside your pipe joints – causing leaks in those joints

Rust or Sediment

If the main part of the heater is leaking, rather than a pipe, you could be dealing with rust or sediment deposits. This needs professional repair, as it can eventually damage the water heater’s electric components.

Hard Water

Hard water contains dissolved mineral particles that can also build up and cause problems like sediment.

Acidic Water

Acidic water causes less build-up, but it can corrode your pipes and make tiny leaks that grow over time.

Tankless water heaters require low flow rates for good performance. Your plumber will need to make sure that you have the optimal pressure and flow setup before installation.

No leak is good news, but one comforting fact is that the leak from a tankless hot water heater will only be around 1 GPM (gallon per minute). This is much less damaging than the basement flood that can come from a large, traditional tank hot water heater leak. It’s also recommended to install a drain pan along with your new tankless water heater. If you do face a leak, the drain pan will contain most of the water. This can make damage less severe and restoration easier.

How to Get Help If A Water Leak Damages Your Connecticut Home

Whether you are detailing with a failed traditional hot water heater, a leaking tankless water heater, or any other source of water damage, professional help is essential. Water can damage both the surfaces and structural integrity of your home, so it must be taken care of right away. Waiting can lead to more damage, and additional, dangerous problems like mold growth.

After experiencing water damage, Westport homeowners are often overwhelmed with decisions they have to make to protect and restore their property. You may have questions about whether or not to file an insurance claim, and feel anxious wanting your home to be restored as fast as possible. Riverside Restoration is here to help. We have specialized restoration and contractor licenses and certifications, and can work directly with you and your insurance company from the initial loss all the way to the final reconstruction phase. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.

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Reviews & Testimonials on Riverside Restoration Inc.




CALEB: This Is Caleb Wright with Riverside Restoration, I’m here with Serena. She had a water loss. Tell me a little bit about the loss and the day you discovered it.

SERENA: Well, unfortunately I was not living in my home. And just by good luck, I had sent someone here to do some work for me and discovered that the refrigerator waterline had froze. And my home was soaked. My kitchen, as well as my lower level, were completely soaked – damaged with water.

I do not recall how I was referred to Caleb but I’m very grateful that I was! Because with all that stress, not living here, and being in a new home – I just handed him over keys and he did the job – worked beautifully with my adjuster from Chubb, Jerry Murry, and right after everything happened and as good luck would have it – my house sold! In one day on the market!

I highly recommend Caleb – he’ll take your headaches away and you can trust him to get the job done correctly.










- Serena |




CALEB: This Is Caleb Wright with Riverside Restoration, I’m here with Paul. What made you decided to call Riverside Restoration?

PAUL: We had a significant loss as a result of an ice dam on the roof. We gave them a call and straight away he was up to speed with what we needed to do and came out straight away.

CALEB: How well did Riverside Restoration work your insurance carrier?

PAUL: It was seamless for me. I am a busy guy with busy family, 3 young kids. With a rental property with all the responsibly with that. Trying to work out the tenants schedule and dealing with the insurance company and stuff like that. And I just let Caleb do what he does and everything turned out great. So we worked really well and really appreciate that.

CALEB: Would you recommend Riverside Restoration to your family and friends?

PAUL: Absolutely 100% would recommend them. Great experience great working with them. Hopefully I don’t have to work with them again.










- Paul |




CALEB: This is Caleb Wright with Riverside Restoration, I’m here with Mark. Mark, tell us a little bit about the story of what happened.

MARK: Sure Caleb. This past summer my wife and I had a very large flood in our basement from 2 pretty big sump pumps failing, ended up with about a foot and a half of water in our basement. My wife was able to find Riverside Restoration by going through the internet and looking for really good professionals, any sort of water mitigation and any sort of water damage type whether it’s a roof or basement. Found Caleb and Riverside Restoration and he was here almost every day and on the phone, email, texting me to make sure we were all on the same page as far as what we were trying to do. Did a fantastic job you know helping us work with our insurance company to make sure we took care of the loss in the most efficient and professional manner.

CALEB: Would you recommend Riverside Restoration to family and friends?

MARK: Absolutely we actually already have recommended Caleb and Riverside Restoration to my father in law who lives in Westport. Any other friends that we have that have any sort of damage or water damage we wouldn’t hesitate at all to recommend Riverside Restoration.










- Mark |




CAELB: This is Caleb Wright and I am here with Jim and Beth how did you hear about Riverside Restoration.

JIM: Well it’s pretty interesting we had a contract to sell our house and when they did the inspection of the house we found that there was mold in the attic and it had to be remediated so in panic I went to the internet and I started looking up mold remediation experts. I started calling around and interestingly enough Caleb was the only company that answered the phone personally. You know when I spoke to him he gave me such assurance that everything will be alright and we will get through this.

BETH: We were in a big time crunch because we were closing in a week so we needed to know that this was going to be done by a certain date.

CALEB: How well did Riverside Restoration work with your attorney?

JIM: That interesting. The first thing Caleb did is said let me call your attorney because I want to understand exactly to what level we have to remediation this to pass the inspection. And he jumped right in and spoke with my attorney and was able to get some really good direction for us to go in.

CALEB: Would you recommend Riverside Restoration to your family and friends?

JIM: 100%

BETH: Absolutely










- Jim and Beth |

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