The water heater at the Garage is tank-less, and uses a powerful burner over a heat exchanger to heat the water as it travels through the system. Thus, it only heats water when the water is needed. Last night (or early this morning) I discovered my water heater leaking all over. After some investigation, I found the heat exchanger had a thin split in one of the copper joints. I took out the exchanger and decided to see if I couldn't fix it. After all, copper takes solder pretty well (that's how you connect copper water pipe) and I can solder. So I cleaner the area around the split surface, treated it with some strong flux and tried to flow in solder with a propane/oxygen torch. That worked fine, but didn't fix the leak.
Having failed to fix the heat exchange, I looked to see if I could find some information on-line about this unit. Sure enough, Bosch
had a web site with the manual on-line. The manual had a part number for the heat exchange, but no information about how to order one. It also said the exchange had a 12 year warranty. Since I didn't have any paper work, I figured this wasn't going to be useful to me. I sent off an e-mail to tech support asking how I could purchase a new heat exchange and went to bed.
This morning, I had a response from tech support. They had a number to call, which I did. To my surprise, they were going to honer their warranty despite my lack of paper work. I spent a bit of time on hold, but once I got someone, they said they were overnighting a new heat exchange. He explained it was fairly easy to install (I figured as much, since I'd taken the old one out) and gave me some tips about down-drafts as a possible cause of failure. They didn't want back the old exchange which he said I could turn into a flower planter or something (it's solid copper, so I'll probably recycle it).
While it's not fun to lack hot water and spend an evening mopping and placing fans, this company is doing everything they can to make the situation right. And I appreciate it :)
Pictured is Talon sitting on his completed staircase for our school's production of Hair
. I tend of overbuild things so they can take an extra strong beating. But this staircase takes overbuilding to a new level. I'm better you could drive a truck up these stairs and they'd take it!