Safety Considerations with Unvented Water Heaters

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Safety Considerations with Unvented Water Heaters

Safety Considerations with Unvented Water Heaters

Both vented and unvented water heaters provide a reliable supply of hot water from the taps, but both also require that you follow specific safety considerations and steps to ensure protection from hot water.

With that being said, unvented water heaters are the more potentially dangerous of the two types, simply because of their nature. They lack the vent to the outside atmosphere that vented systems use. Thus, pressure can build up inside to dangerous levels if the cylinder is not maintained properly at all times.

To ensure that you and your family remain protected, while still being able to enjoy a constant supply of mains pressure hot water from your taps, follow these safety precautions and tips:

  1. Your unvented water heater must be inspected annually by a licensed professional service provider. Without such an inspection and the service provider signing off that your hot water heater is safe and properly maintained, the system should not be used. At Easy Flow, we ensure that your maintenance is handled simply and promptly. Our reminder system is automatic, so you never need to worry about scheduling a check-up, and we can even provide a service logbook if necessary.
  2. Never attempt to maintain or service your unvented hot water heater yourself. If you notice that the water heater is not operating normally, or that it is not working at all, immediately contact a licensed service provider to inspect the system and make any needed repairs.
  3. If you have noticed increased noise during heating (creaking, gurgling, etc.), it’s possible that lime scale has built up inside the system. This can reduce the diameter of piping and increase the amount of pressure the system experiences. Call Easy Flow to have the system drained and flushed to remove build up and ensure safe operation of your unvented hot water heater.
  4. Never attempt to disconnect or connect electricity to your hot water heater. Your unvented hot water heater is connected to your home’s electrical wiring, which is how the heating elements operate. However, electricity can be incredibly dangerous, even deadly. Never attempt to connect or disconnect your hot water heater from the electricity. Remember – installation and maintenance requires the skills of both a plumber and an electrician.
  5. Be wary of the water supply. If your water will be turned off at the mains for any reason, it is advisable to also turn off your hot water heater. This will prevent any potential problem, including the operation of heating elements without sufficient water, which could lead to damage to the heating element.
  6. Do not install pumps to improve water pressure flow. Unvented water heaters are tied directly to the mains, which means that the pressure from your hot water taps will be the same as your mains pressure. Installing pumps will not improve this, and will adversely affect your system overall.
  7. Never attempt to service, clean or otherwise modify the discharge pipework on the exterior of your home. This pipework should be made of metal or BS 5254/BS EN 1451-1 polypropylene piping, and should be appropriately protected as specified by the NHBC’s technical guidance document, Discharge Pipes from Unvented Hot Water Storage Systems.
  8. If you notice any unusual operation from your unvented hot water heater, including but not limited to the following, immediately contact a licensed service provider, such as Easy Flow:
  • No water from the hot water heater
  • No hot water from the heater
  • Leaks from the pipework or the cylinder
  • Damage to or obstruction of the discharge pipework

If you need assistance with any hot water heater repairs, to schedule hot water heater maintenance, or to install a new hot water heater, call EasyFlow at 0800 433 4043. We cover the areas of Manchester, Liverpool and Chester.

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