Misc: Navien NPE-240A Navilink App missing scheduling function

NPE-240A
Summary:
Just had a new tankless water heater installed in my house to replace a failing 22 year-old 50 gallon tank.  Couldn't be happier w/ my new tankless, but was dealing with weirdness on the Navilink app to control/view my new Navien.  The app's scheduling function (for the recirculation pump) was missing.

Solution:
NR-20DU


  • Disconnect NR-20DU remote controller. (if you want to schedule via App)
    • *DIP Switches need to be set properly as well.

In my case, w/ a bridge valve in my furthest faucet, is considered "External Recirculation".
Check w/ your plumber for proper settings, they set mine properly.
If you are in the Atlanta area, I highly recommend Plumbing Express LLC.
Ask for Jonathan DeWeese.

For reference only, these were set correctly by my plumber for my setup.

  • DIP Switch 1 Off, 2 On.  (Internal Recirculation would be the opposite)
  • Parameter 18 set to On (This is to enable Navilink)

These settings are detailed out in the installation guide.

DO NOT just look at youtube for suggestions, there are some videos out there that are just plain WRONG.

Details:
My understanding is that "External Recirculation" refers to the use of a bridge valve, typically installed in the furthest point from the water heater.  Basically utilizing my cold water pipes as a poor man's hot water loop.  "Internal Recirculation" is when a dedicated hot water loop is actually installed.  That will be way more expensive to retrofit a house that does not have a dedicated hot water loop, so external recirculation is usually more common.

With regards to the Navilink schedule function, my plumber was just as confused as I was since this was one of the primary reasons I wanted the Navilink function.  Long story short, installing the NR-20DU remote controller unit disables the apps remote scheduling capabilities.  Simply disconnecting it enables the scheduling function in the Navilink app.

When thinking about it, it actually makes sense.  You wouldn't want 2 devices dictating possibly conflicting schedules.  Although documentation wise, it's almost as if you're led to believe that the remote controller is required for Navilink schedule function.  So what is the difference between the two?

Quite simply, Navilink allows a more complex schedule.  The NR-20DU controller only allows 3 schedules.

Next is to figure out how to have app enable the 'hot button'.  Cursory glance appears to me that I need the hot button kit, but that appears to disable the scheduling function.  This leads me to believe that the unit might be dumb in its status info to its controllers.  Meaning if a 'schedule' is active, pressing/activating the hot button will turn that off.  Seems like a split brain issue that Navien works around by simply disabling competing functions.
NaviLink App & Wi-Fi Control

Comments

Unknown said…
The app is not the most intuitive. It gives me the option to 'control' and create a weekly schedule. It does not specify what 'control' means. I assume it is for what re-circulation, but not sure. I also don't have a 'hot water' button in the app. I am not sure why not. Looking at the various videos before buying the Navilink router, they make it seem like the app would include a 'hot button' feature.
Do I need to buy anything else to get that 'hot button' in the app?
Zsoldier said…
You are right. The control is recirculation only. Hot button documentation is super vague too. Hard to really know if you need button or not. Also alludes to the fact that recirculation control gets disabled too.
Dave said…
I have been battling this unit for 2 years. I love everything about the hardware. The Problem is the damn Navilink and the support they have from Korea. 2 yeas of this is insane. I have even had to swap out control and front panel boards to get the function to work, but they broke that with an app update. Since the app updated and removed the option to enable or disable the recirc and enable or disable the schedule, mine has not worked and defaults to every 30 mins recirc. Support has been useless for the most part and just points to Korea Dev team. I call about every 6 months to get any updates on the issue they know nothing about every time. What I am finding now is if you call at 8am Eastern time you get New Jersey. They are top tier support and know the most. They had me un-register and re-register to get it working. I am still seeing wonkey things happening but the schedule seems to work now. I am going on 1 day so far and its working. Hopefully after 2 years this crap is over with and I can not heat my basement up to 90 in the summer.
Zsoldier said…
I agree. The Navilink app is "meh" at best and their documentation of the "smart" features is nonsensical. I actually only use the app to view status and utilization these days. I have even turned off the scheduling function cause it's wasteful if I'm not around and forget to turn it off. On-demand takes a bit longer to heat up, but oh well. Smarter that way, just not instant.
Unknown said…
Dave, if you could enlighten me (other users) on what you had to do to get scheduling to work that would be great. I hate the app as it is just not user friendly. If you throw the toggle switch to enable scheduling I don't know if it is 'on' or 'off'. I would like it to recirculate in the mornings when we take showers and then not for the rest of the day. But would like to have the 'instant button' in the app that I could push in the evening, where it would recirculate the water for me on demand, and then five min later I can take a hot shower. Right now I have it on recirculate all day long, which gives me instant hot water, but wastes a lot of energy. Thanks for any insight you can provide.
dradam said…
Same Issue -- Solved ! I think?

I have had the same problem for 2 years. Despite setting up a schedule with navilink my NPE has been recirculating at will and costing me $$$ gas.

Based on Daves post and "unknown" above I unregistered and re-registered the Navilink.... but also had an epiphiny... The enable/ disable buttons are wrong !!! They should read "Enabled/Disabled" When it says enable the schedule works. I think it is a Korean translation issue.

A caveat : I could not reregister using my Iphone x with IOS 13. I had to use my wifes IOS 12 Ipad. Once registered I was able to login and use my phone to control the unit again. Navien tech support is aware of this issue and I assume Navien will fix this in the next app update.

Like the unknown poster above I hope they will create an app based hot button ( and widgit) for the occasional recirulation. (the actual hot button kit which I tried turns off the scheduling ability).

So Navien:
Please fix IOS 13 compatibility
Clarify the enable/disable schedule button if I am correct
Please add a hot button to the app and better yet a a widgit.

If it fails me again I will repost.
Unknown said…
Follow up:

As in my recent post the Navilink and schedule have finally been working corectly. I have been doing a little tweaking of parameters 12,14 and 15 to try to keep the warmest and most consistent water in my pipes during a scheduled recirculation. In addition to the suggestions I made in my last post It would be nice if Navien had a recommended algorithm for adjusting these parameters.
Unknown said…
Addendum

As I stated in my last post the enable and disable buttons are wrong. If you hit enable it shuts off scheduled recirculation and the machine reverts to default recirculation. As a consequence If you want to recirculate off schedule jut turn off (Enable) the schedule in the app and then in a few minutes turn it back on ( disable) your schedule a work around to a hot button.
Eric The Red said…
So I just got off with a "Senior" support specialist at Navien Customer support. They stated that the "Default" re-circulation schedule is every 30 minutes if it senses a 9 degree drop. Once you connect a hot button or a Navilink to the water heater, this overrides the default every 30 minutes schedule...period. It is assumed that when you connect a hot button that you only want it to recirculate when you hit the button, and it is assumed that when you connect a Navilink that you will set up a schedule and have it recirculate within those hours specified. If the hot button is not engaged, or a schedule is not specified and enabled in the app then the water heater simply will not re-circulate. So disabling and enabling the schedule does not work as a workaround to the hot button feature not showing up except for the fact that when enabled it will find that the reservoir temp is lower than it should be and begin to heat it, which then in turn will allow it to start to recirculate again (not time saving or water saving at all).
Eric The Red said…
What I have found to keep it easy for understanding the schedule enable/disable on the app...is to add the letter "d" at the end of the word being displayed. Enable=Enabled, and Disable=Disabled.
Unknown said…
If the hot button is not engaged, or a schedule is not specified and enabled in the app then the water heater simply will not re-circulate. Quote

Have you tried creating a schedule but then disabling the schedule? With a specified schedule if I then disable the schedule my unit will run 24/7 recirc/heat.

Is your hot button circuit board still installed? Mine is not. It can be easily removed.

5. So having found this out, it would seem that the only way to engage a "hot button workaround" would be to enable the schedule...have it figure out/sense the reservoir tank is cold and begin heating the reservoir tank and therefore initiating a re-circulation. There is not a workaround if you have the schedule enabled; disabling it does not initiate a re-circulation.[/QUOTE]

With Navilink installed and communicating (no hot button board installed) and my scheduled program "disabled" my unit recirculates and heats 24/7 as though it were a regular heater as you have shown above 30 min /9 degrees . When my programmed schedule is enabled(working) and I want to take a shower "off" schedule disabling the programmed schedule will initiate unit recirculation and heat if the temp has dropped- hence the workaround. This does indeeed work for me. You must then hit enable again to go back to your schedule or the 30 min 9 degree recirculation will apply 24/7. If this is not your experience perhaps the firmware has changed since my install about 3 years ago. Or perhaps if your hot button circuit board is installed it may have an effect. Be sure your Parameters and dip switches are set correctly.

To test this ----while the schedule is enabled (and no hot button installed), but you are off schedule go to the unit and then hit disable on the app. If yours works like mine you will see the symbol for recirculation start within moments.

Obviously the best option would be for Navien to create an app based Hot Button (no additional circuit board) which can be used in conjunction with the scheduler. Despite multiple posts and e-mails they have not done it. That said adding a "D" to the words enable and disabled should be an easy software fix. I ditched and removed the hot button circuit board early on because it did not allow the app to set a schedule. It was one or the other as you have noted. I never tested the "workaround" with the hot button board installed.

I set my schedule for 7AM when I wake up to 10PM when Everyone would no longer take showers. From what I was told this means it will not run/recirculate overnight from 10:01PM to 6:59AM because of this schedule Quote.

What you say here is correct-- I hope you know that you can set multiple schedules in one day- such as showers from 7-10 am and 7-pm to 10pm. The unit will not heat or recirculate between schedules(unless you disable the schedule)

Best wishes.

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