Takagi JR error code 12

Discussion in 'Tankless Water Heater Forum' started by aksmieja, Jul 23, 2009.

  1. aksmieja

    aksmieja New Member

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    All of the sudden, there is no hot water coming into the bathtub. The error code flashing is 12. I believe that is for a fuel sensor? Is that something common to go bad? Expensive? We can't find a dealer near that does repairs, so it is something we can order and install DIY? While researching this topic, I read that hard water isn't good for our tankless. Our softner quit about a year ago and we didn't replace it. Could that have anything to do with the error? (we have a sand-point shallow well)
    The kitchen sink water did get fairly warm today. It has always had low water pressure compared to the bathtub. The heater didn't "blink" error code with that, but does when we run the tub. Any thoughts?
    Thanks
  2. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    Error code 12 is a flame sensor error. Buffing it clean with a fiber-tex or similar (soft-pot-scrubbers, not steel wool, not sandpaper) usually does the trick. It's an annual maintenance thing for some installations, goes for years in others. Some modulating-condensing boiler flame sensors have similar issues.

    If you don't already have it, download the manual:

    http://www.takagi.com/download/product_manuals/T-KJr.pdf

    You can figure out how to find the flame sensor from the exploded diagram on P.24. (Be sure to turn off the power and the gas before opening the sucker up, eh? ) While you have shut down and open, clean the filter too (an annual maintenance thing in most installations.) Walk yourself through as much of the maintenance protocol on p.16 as you're competent to do before buttoning it all back up.
  3. aksmieja

    aksmieja New Member

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    thank you so much!! Sounds way cheaper! LOL
  4. aksmieja

    aksmieja New Member

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    still no hot water after we cleaned out the filter. I couldn't find the location of the flame sensor. The flame sensor wires we found, but not the sensor. Any clues? It's not listed on our manual.
  5. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    Its held onto the front of the burn chamber by a couple of screws. I see if I can find a diagram fro you.
  6. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    This is why I always try to install two tankless units. If one fails you will still be getting hot water from the second unit.

    Here is the diagrahm. The part in the red circle.

    Attached Files:

  7. couldent pass this one up

    just passing through tonight....I couldent resist...

    Sewer Ratz...
    why in the world would you install 2 takagi units for double the price??/ just to be sure they have hot water if one breaks down???, (no offence meant here)



    If they are on well water and have not had soft water in over a year, their is a very good possiblility that the heat exchanger is in dire need of a good vinegar washing...

    the folw rate to the kitchen is much less than what would be going to the tub..

    that is probably why the damn thing is capable of provideing a little water to the kitchen, with a closed chut heat exchanger....

    Isnt it TRUE...
    if they dont act quickly and get that thing cleaned properly, wont it VOID THEIR WARRANTY on the heat exchanger???


    Last edited: Aug 3, 2009
  8. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    Oh you do need to delime the unit on a regular basis or yes it will void the warranty.

    I would not put two large units in. I would put in two of the smaller units. Let me use Noritz as an example. Lets say I have a home that needs a 931M unit to provide 6 gpm in my area for a retail cost of $2100.00 or I can install two 0751M units to provide 9.6 gpm at the total retail cost of $2600.00 for both units. So it will cost him $500.00 more plus another 2 hours in labor to install them both. Now he will have a good capacity and redundancy in case a unit becomes in need of repair.
  9. whatevre the home owner wants....I guess....

    If the customer is willing to go through all that,
    to get a battery of them....

    I suppose it is just another solution to the tankless dilemma... put in two in case one breaks down and can be repaired...

    people will do anything to go green.....


    Last edited: Aug 3, 2009
  10. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    Very true Master Plumber Mark. In most cases I only sell one Noritz 0751 unit since it can handle all their needs in a single bath home. But its the larger homes I like to sell the duel units instead of the more expensive single unit. Like I said it also gives them more GPM for the Δ/T rise. I still prefer tank systems in most cases. There are some homes no matter what you do it is not cost effective to be green.

    As to servicing these units. I really feel a home owner should not be doing anything other than descaling, and cleaning the inlet water filter. Anything else should be left to a certified plumber that has taken the repair class for that unit. I know most of the people here say there is no one capable of repairing their unit near by, then look at the next city over.

    This note to all those considering going tankless. One of the factors you should consider is how readily available are the repair parts, and is there any authorized repair technicians in your area for the brand you are choosing. I know of a few people that went with Rinnai, and Takagi in the Chicago are that had no hot water for up to 2 weeks waiting on parts or someone that is competent enough to trouble shoot the unit. Now as these units keep on getting sold, the supply house may eventually carry the repair parts needed in the near future.

    Noritz in the Chicago area is the exception. They have a main office here with a plenty of parts, along with many plumbers that took their level 3 repair class, but if the plumbers prove incompetent they have technicians that will come out to trouble shoot the unit as well. Still if I needed a part from my supply house good luck. They get them from the Noritz warehouse on a need basis.
  11. Why do you want the greif???

    That was a Very good post....


    now the questioin I pose...
    Why in the world would you want to get yourself involoved in something that is probably going to get you in deep trouble with the home owner some day when it breaks down???

    even this fellow with the Takagi unit is probably going to blame the installer for not
    explaining that they must have soft water and de-scale it every 6 months.... and they will probably want
    or demand service or a refund...



    if it is a gamble to get parts for most brands of tankless heaters in less than a week
    around here I could be shot by the lady of the house
    and she certainly would expect me to bend over backwards
    to get them hot water ..NOW.. (been there done that)

    or give them their money back..

    What do you do, tell them to go to hell till the parts arrive???



    Their are places in our town that will install one for about 4500 . Money is the incentive, not service or relaibility..



    I guess I am a worry wart and a sissey.....but I simply dont need the greif...and i dont
    want to spend my week waiting on parts.




    ...
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2009
  12. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    There seems to be a presumption that going tankless is all about going green. While it's true that there is an efficiency advantage, and subsidies from various governments for higher efficiency models that's not even the half of it. The rationale I see as often is about hot-water capacity- the ability to fill the oversized soaking tub/Jacuzzi, or have six people taking showers in rapid succession etc.. Then to some extent it's about the space required for that capacity- you could always add 1200-1500lbs of hot water in tank heaters to be able to handle all loads, but it takes more room (and in some instances, some structural reinforcement.)

    Tankless hot water heaters are only about "green" on one hand- for the other hand it's all about indulgent splendor. (I suppose for the guilt-prone the efficiency argument helps them rationalize it, making them more likely to indulge their desires. :) )

    For true greenies there is usually better return elsewhere, eg: With subsidies, solar hot water is the same order of magnitude for installed-cost with a far bigger impact on fuel use, carbon footprint, blah, blah. If yer gonna spend a couple-three grand to go from 62% to 82% efficiency, reducing your fuel use for water heating by 15%, why not spend five grand and reduce it by 80% or more?

    This of course the above estimate for savings of tankless vs. tank ignores the problems with EF testing not matching actual use, making it hard to predict apriori what the operating efficiency of a tank heater is. The soaking-tub filling 6-showering users will get far better efficiency out of the tank than its EF numbers imply, and the single-guy showers once/week type will get far worse. The tankless users will get about the same, independently of frequency & volume of use, making the as-used efficiency of a tankless more predictable, but in most cases it's EF numbers exceed the real as-used efficiency by ~5-8% (sometimes more) due to the efficiency robbing effects of short draws for hand washing, etc. It takes at least 3-6 gallon draws to actually achieve anything like the efficiency a tankess gets in an EF test, which draws 10.2 gallons at a time.

    So is an 0.82EF tankless REALLY more efficient than a 0.62EF tank? Usually, it is, but only dramatically so for low-volume users. For high volume users the tank could actually be averaging over 0.70, and in the real world the tankless only runs 0.75-ish- half the efficiency difference implied by EF test data.

    Bottom line- if you're out to save the planet, go solar. If you want to never run out of hot water (except when it breaks :) ), go tankless- but be prepared to maintain the sucker.

    If you want the highest efficiency for the lowest cost (and have a hydronic boiler running the heating system), go with an indirect tank. It'll have higher heating capacity than a tank, lower maintenance than a tankless.
  13. aksmieja

    aksmieja New Member

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    I guess things got a little off track from my post. LOL
    Anyway, NO I would never blame the installer because that would be me, my husband and a guy we hired to remodel our bathroom. A secondly, I wouldn't expect a refund or any warranty work because it's 5 yrs old! All I wanted was to find out the problem, order a part and get hot water back for my shower.
    To update... my husband ended up calling Takagi and I was so impressed with the service tech. He spent over 2 hours on the phone walking us through everything. And honestly, he probably saved our home from burning down and inevitably saved our lives. There was some kind of switch that was in the wrong position, so it failed to "shut off" sooner because of the soot build-up.

    The filter only had a little sand in it and from what it looked like, our water must not be as hard as we thought (although we will look into getting another water softener). It's the exhaust pipe that literally turned my husband and the near vacinity black. I had quite a mess to clean up when he was done, but now we know what to do as far as maintenance. Like I said, that tech gave us the best customer service I've ever experienced. If I had his name, I'd make sure to send him a letter of thanks. All customer service should be 1/2 that great.
    Anyway, thanks for the help that some of you gave.
  14. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    Glad you got it all worked out.
  15. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    I've yet to call the Takagi help line, but yours is not the first glowing report I've read on how thorough & patient they are. (They DO support the product!)

    I'd be curious to hear more about what switch in the wrong position would keep it from turning off though???
  16. Scott D. Plumber

    Scott D. Plumber In the Trades

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    Code 12

    Code 12 would have me looking closer at the gas pressure. Not the static pressure when it's sitting still but the DYNAMIC pressure when you open up that tub spout! Can't tell you how many times some DIY'er has installed one adn run a 1/2" gas line to it, opr a very long run of 3/4". If you are no 6-10" Water Column for ng or 10-13.5" WC for LP with no more than a 1" pressure drop dynamic, there's your sign.

    You can clean and descale all you want, it'll never run right if you can't feed it when it wants to go into high fire.

    As for parts, the best out there is Rinnai. If you need one (very rare) they overnight it to you if you can't get it locally.
  17. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    Hi Scot, I even ran into some DIY installed ones where the run was over 100' of ¾" pipe with the furnace and range attached. Had to run a dedicated line from the meter to the unit. Also seen many undersized gas meters. The local gas company is more than happy to upgrade the meter.

    Now as to make of Tankless water heaters, I have to say Noritz is by far the best out there. It is more advanced than the Rinnai, comes with parts that Rinnai does not like the advanced controller. Now Rinnai is a for off second choice for me, then even farther off third is Takagi, I would not even consider any of the others.

    Lets compare the Rinnai R75LSi / GE 75DNSRSA to the Noritz N-0751M-DVC

    BTUs
    Noritz 11,000 - 199,900 Rinnai 15,000 - 180,000

    Flow rates / temp settings.
    Noritz .5 gpm - 9.8gpm 100º - 180º Rinnai .6 gpm - 7.5 gpm 98º - 140º
    Noritz can be set to 180º with out any special controllers, the Rinnai needs a special remote that needs to be purchased. Also Rinnai's min flow rate can vary from .6 gpm to 1 gpm

    Vent piping
    Noritz uses 100% stainless and is adjustable. Rinnai uses galvanized steel or plastic and requires cutting to adjust the lengths.

    Heat Exchanger
    Noritz heat exchanger is 25% thicker than the Rinnai's

    Burner
    Noritz uses a duel flame burner which gives a better temperature stability. Rinnai is still using a single flame burner.

    Controls
    Noritz comes with a controller that gives you full diagnostics. Rinnai must purchase a special remote.

    Additional Features
    Noritz allows you to make a simple elevation adjustment by just clipping two wires together, the Rinnai you need to set the dip-switches. Noritz also has a built in controller for recirculation pumps where the Rinnai does not.

    The one thing they do have in common is the warranty 12 year heat exchanger/ 5 year parts/ 1yr labor
  18. Scott D. Plumber

    Scott D. Plumber In the Trades

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    comparisons

    Hi SR. I happen to know quite a bit more about the noritz than they would like me to know. I rep'ed them for 5 years, did there local training classes and got to trouble shoot installations as both and installer/plumber and rep. So this is the background where the below comments come from.

    First thing I want to say is that YES! this is a very high quality product period and I take nothing from them. If you have one, you'll be happy. Now as for the claims:

    Manufacturer's tend too over state aspects somtimes and as the past rep I can tell you that many will "parrot" these without looking further into it. (I was once guilty of this but have learned better) Below are some things you might not know.

    Resonse: Elevation setting is one dip switch "click" v/s one wire plug. Not a big difference there, especially since you already have the cover off for wiring on either one. The controller for recirc is nice, however both still take a warranty hit to 3 YEARS when recircing through the heater except for the ACT Metlund D'mand system (Which can not use the control anyway) I would not use that feature anyway and always advise on using the Metlund on any tankless water heater regardless of brand as it does not shorten the life, void the warranty or cause an increase in energy consumption.

    On Parts warranty,(unless things have changed in the last two years and as an authorized service provider for Rinnai and Noritz) Noritz will have you buy a part and pay FT, then you ship back the old part and they will give you credit if it's warranty. So Far any Rinnai Part I ever saw shipped was overnighted at no charge and there was no further paperwork to do. I have also seen Rinnai ship out FREE Heat Exchangers a couple of times where there was a failure due to inproper installation and condensate damage when everyone knew full well that is was not actually warranty. That's pretty good.


    The Nortz is a very well made product and it is no accident that Rinnai and Noritz represent about 70% of the world wide tankless water heater market! Who is bigger depends on who you ask.

    I will note this though, look on the Japanese stock Exchange Nikkei and you will find Rinnai in the top 500. None of the other manufacturers are there. This is not because of tankless, Rinnai happens to be the worlds largest mfg'er of GAS FIRED appliances. In the US market they hold about a 52% market share with Noritz being second at somewhere like 20 something. I forget the exact numbers. The others are not even close and there is about a dozen or so of them. This is as much marketing as anything else.

    The Rinnai Tech support is still superior with 24/7/365 v/s Noritz 8am eastern to 5pm pacific monday through Friday and how good a engineer you get at either is subject to who you get. They are both great tech support and far better than any of the others.

    In a nutshell, in my opinion you Noritz and Rinnai, and Apple and an Apple. Both great products.

    One more thing I forgot to mention, in a modern home with 3.5 baths or less with standard shower heads (flow restrictors not removed) you only really need about 5gpm capacity of hot water. The showers actually only use about1.5GPM of water even though the heads are marked for 2.5. Because...they are rated at 80PSI in a lab. You are going to be in a house, not a lab and not at 80 PSI. With system losses you're lucky to get 1.5gpm. If your velocity is good and temperature steady, you have a happy HO. Body sprays, rain heads and other things of course can be factors. If you have a big tub, while filling it, it might take a bit longer but so what? once it's full, you're still not out of hot water. Any of the Noritz or Rinnai units that will do 5+GPM of hot water at a 60*F rise will do a great job in the bottom 50% of the USA in a typical home. For the colder climates, look for a model with a bit more capacity.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2009
  19. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

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    The Noritz N-751-DVC is a concentric vent unit, which is why it was compared to the Rinnai R75LSi. Did I parrot the information yes I did from a comparison brochure that Noritz has put out comparing the two units. Here is the PDF file I got the information I posted. http://www.noritz.com/u/noritz_751m_vs_rinnai_75ls.pdf

    I too have taken all the training classes for Rinnai (did them first) and Noritz. Rinnai's classes really left me with more questions than answers. They had their sales rep teach the installation and repair classes. With the Noritz classes I was really impressed with the knowledge of the instructors and how through they answering all the plumbers questions. When we asked some tough questions of the Rinnai instructor and he didn't know the answer he glossed over it and moved on.

    Now about parts Noritz does not charge for the warranty part here, and will ship it overnight to us. But I do have one advantage, and this might apply to the classes too, there is a Noritz show room right here in the Chicago land area. The supply houses that carry Rinnai for me will charge me for the warranty part and reimburse me when Rinnai reimburses them.

    Its funny you mention world market share. Noritz does mention this in their Level 1 class. They do claim they have 50% total world market, and Rinnai, Takagi, Navain, and others split the remaining 50%. I went to the Nikkei I can not get any real details to where either company stands now since I am not a subscriber to their service(have to be registered and subscribe to them) But Noritz in 2005 was ranked 23rd

    Like I said Rinnai is a good second heater in my book, if a home owner really wanted one I would be happy to install it. But I rather sell the Noritz I have had better support from them, their classes actually taught us how to properly install the units and service them. Where as Rinnai's classes all felt like a sales pitch to me and leaving the classes with more questions than answers.
  20. Scott D. Plumber

    Scott D. Plumber In the Trades

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    oops

    I forgot about their concentric, sorry. This is the one they put out to go up against the others and wisely so. You also proove another thing and that's how valuable having very good local rep support is.

    That makes all the difference in the world and I too have run into some reps who really don't much about the product. Take the cover off and their lost. Without good reps to support the product and help out the field guys, it does not matter much how good a product like this is.
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