[Update] The early generation Navien tankless systems have had some definite issues… So much so we completely stopped selling them around 2009. For the most part Navien did a good job helping customers and dealers fix and repair the mistakes in their past units. I’m happy to say we are now selling and actually promoting Navien tankless water heaters again. Their new generation launched in 2011, redesigned and vastly improved. Having personally reviewed and tested the new generation we all feel confident in recommending a Navien for your water heating needs.
Navian was the first to come out with a condensing tankless water heater and thus they are bound to have some additional issues. This post is aimed at addressing and solving some of the common problems associated with their early generation systems.
- Navien flow sensor issues
- Navien Control board failures
- Navien Heat exchanger cracks
The flow sensor
Early Navian models had flow sensors that would easily corrode and shut the unit down as the buildup would impair operation. There is a temporary fix where you take the two clamps off the sensor, pull it out and blow on it. The fix that Navien has made is to change the sensor over to stainless steel, you can replace the part to prevent this unexpected shut down. Also an additional fix is to install a 5 micron filter in the water inlet right before the Navian.
Navian Control Boards or Motherboards
These do fail relatively frequently and symptoms would be that the unit turns on, then off, then on, and then off repeatedly or possibly, fails with error code 03 (ignition failure). There are a few other issues that the board can cause but the only real solution is to power cycle the unit (un-plug and plug back in) or replace the Navien control board.
Cracking Heat Exchanger
This isn’t near as frequent as the problems listed above but it is an issue none the less. A heat exchanger should be replaced immediately; it’s a breach containment allowing exhaust gases to enter your home. The heat exchanger is under Navian warranty.
Here is some places and information you can use to find additional help.
GoTankless Service Department – 647-925-1930 (GoTankless is a trusted tankless specific company operating out of Toronto, Ontario)
Navien Technical Help Line – 1-800-519-8794 (Great solution for the Do It Yourself crowd)
Navien online trouble shooting – Go HERE
Navien Warranty details – Find out more HERE (should be accurate for Canada and Ontario)
Additional Issues – Read Here
UPDATE – here is a Complete list of Navien Error Codes
If all else fails post a comment and we can try and trouble-shoot any issues here.