Takagi4 Hot Water Problems

Discussion in 'Tankless Water Heater Forum' started by DrPain, Aug 16, 2014.

  1. DrPain

    DrPain New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Honduras
    Hi...new to the forum and find myself unwittingly becoming a technician with this new T-K4 . The dealer for this unit apparently doesn't have a clue to the problem. Ah...yes, the problem! Very limited hot water and now none. I'm in the process of checking and cleaning the water filters on the incoming cold water line. The Takagi sits at the end of a complex water filtration system where it is unlikely there is a clogged filter but it could happen. We're US living in Honduras so in fairness to the Takagi dealer solutions have had to be offered via email and a few very lengthy long distance phone sessions which usually took place when I was trying to run a Honduran work crew (???) at the same time I was trying to do all of the things the Takagi rep was asking me to do. Their conclusion has consistently been that I somehow crossed by plumbing (hot to cold or vice versa). Since I plumbed the house myself I know that could not have happened as the hot is CPVC and the cold is PVC and everyone here knows those O/D's are very different. The accountant/owner of the dealership felt he had a sucker on this end (maybe so) but not stupid and he kept calling for me to bring in a real plumber. So I did and he confirmed the plumbing since the walls at that time were wide open (sheetrock had yet to be installed) but the dealer ignored the findings saying the plumbing had to be incorrect. I have seen that mentioned on these blogs so apparently it really can happen (probably with copper lines). So where have I gone with this problem? Cold showers (can get really cold here in Honduras believe it or not!) get really old after just a few days. Think one year!

    This is a LP system and the lines are properly sized. Pressure is right at 10col/inches but there are problems. My old T-K3 worked fine throughout this 2-story new home for about a year until (just guessing because no one really knows for sure) there was a fire at the unit. I heard a small explosion (bang) and searched all over the house for the source. Finally removed the panel to the T-K3 which is inside in the laundry room and there was the burnt marks and the computer board was fried in places. We suspect that some septic gases had been seeping past rags stuffed into the waste line in the adjoining unfinished bathroom. That has been corrected and a nice Kohler sits on that waste line.

    Takagi was good enough to send me replacements parts (for free) and we replaced everything they said would likely be the cause. The T-K3 never worked again. Keep in mind that the T-K3 worked fine before the fire, so cross plumbing could not be the problem! So Takagi sent me (for free) a replacement. Interestingly enough they sent a T-k4. They told me the T-K3 was no longer being sold and the T-K4 was the replacement and with the remote control unit was the answer to my problems. Not so.

    For a year I have tried one tech-offered solution after another. The dealer no longer wants to correspond with me and graciously referred me to another dealer who he said would take a fresh run at this. Gave me his email and I sent him an email tagged onto the very long thread but he chose not to get involved apparently. So I've had to become somewhat a tech. I've read things on this blog that were never even mentioned by their techs. Thank you for this forum! I never thought that dip #6 might possibly be a culprit. Also I never dreamed that dip #3 (altitude) had to be set for 3,000 meters. And that #7 had to be 'On' for the selected 122degr remote setting. I'll do these things and clean the filters again but I thought someone 1) might have some other suggestions; 2) others might also be experiencing the same problems; and 3) others might be heavily relying on service techs that I have found have very little on-the-job training but have been taught what to say when certain trigger words come up during a session. Bottom line they don't seem to have a clue. I could not find a single company source (not that there isn't one but it must be pretty well hidden!) for what each of those dip switches control. Still don't know all of them but thanks to this forum, I now know about at least a few of them. I'll give an update if someone cares to comment. Thanks in advance!!!

    http://www.takagi.com/products/tankless-water-heaters/t-k4-in-p
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2014
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,110
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2014
  3. DrPain

    DrPain New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Honduras
    Hi Terry. I should have clarified that the PVC is only the cold water inlet to the house (and the T-K4 unit). From the T-K4 CPVC is what is used. And by the way no one here uses anything but CPVC and PVC as this is Central America.

    Also I made the dip switch changes (#1 for LP; #3 for altitude and I mistaking said 3000 meters and meant feet; #6 for outside install; and #7 for 122degr. output). The burner light came on for about 10-15 seconds and I heard the clunking sounds but then I got an Error #12 which I've learned is related to the Hi-Low Pressure Switch among other things that I don't understand. The switch location appears to be just outside the copper manifold with two small blue wires clipped onto electrical prongs (snap on/off with plastic protective coverings). Since the protective coverings, I'm assuming this is VAC and not DC? I'm told I need to determine that this switch is properly functioning. How do I do that test? When I shut off power to the unit and pulled the blue wires the switch turns counter-clockwise and there's a small red (looks like) reset button between the two connection receptacles. How does this play into the testing? Does the turning have anything to do with adjusting the hi/low?

    DrPain
  4. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,110
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    "How do I do that test? When I shut off power to the unit and pulled the blue wires the switch turns counter-clockwise and there's a small red (looks like) reset button between the two connection receptacles. How does this play into the testing? Does the turning have anything to do with adjusting the hi/low?"

    You're losing me on that one. Maybe Dana will see this post and respond.
  5. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    2,912
    Location:
    01609
    Sorry- never peeked under the hood of the TK4, don't know where the pressure switch is, or how to measure it.

    Are you sure it's the LP version of the TK4? It's more than merely a dip-switch setting that makes the difference. The dip-switch setting is sp that the same control board can be used in both versions, but is needed to be set correctly for the controls use the correct algorithms/ look-up tables etc.

    Most Takagi units prior to the TK4 require a minimum water pressure of 15 psi to work correctly, and if your water pressure is marginal it could cause an error condition. (I would have expected this to be the same with the TK3.) With a whole chain of filtering and water conditioning plumbed in series with the cold feed, it would have to be measured at the cold side of the TK4, with the hot water tap open.
  6. DrPain

    DrPain New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Honduras
  7. DrPain

    DrPain New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Honduras
    Dana from my understanding there isn´t any difference between the T-k4 & the t-k3 except for the remote. In my last post (my internet service has been down since last Sat eve & only partially up now)...I remarked and gave reference directly from the Takagi Troubleshooting guide. I am getting alternating Error ´11´ and Error ´12´ codes. And in the likely causes column(Takagi) it says to check the Hi-Lo Switch to make sure it is working. I think I´ve located it positioned just off the burner with two blue electrical wires and what looks like a red reset button between them. How can I check this Hi-Lo Switch if I don´t know for sure this is it? And would this be AC or DC? I´d like not to burn up a multimeter!

    The problem is that no matter how I setup the dip switches or no matter how carefully I follow the troubleshooting I cannot get the ignition to fire. The blower comes on but there is no red light indicating the T-k4 is doing it´s job...so I haven´t had any hot water. How many showers have you taken lately with no hot water? Surely someone either has some clues or experience with these things and can point me in the right direction?

    Regarding the psi. My gauges located on both the cold and hot water lines show 46psi. Should be plenty. The propane tank is set for 9.5water column inches of pressure. Now that is about 80´away from the T-k4 but the regulator is only 10´away from the T-k4 so with Takagi saying 8-14 wc-inches unless there is some pressure drop I am unaware of, that shouldn´t be a problem either. What if we increase the wc-inches pressure to 10.5? The only appliance on the gas line is this tankless heater.

    Thanks for your input!
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