Water heaters may have long life, but even the best ones may leak. A leaking water heater may seem like just a minor trouble, but it can quickly turn into a big problem. Even a small amount of water can cause damage to your floors, sub-floors, and walls. When your water heater is leaking, it may be a symptom of a much larger problem. This doesn’t mean that water heater needs replacing, but you will want to fix any leaks as soon as possible.
WHAT TO DO WITH A LEAKING WATER HEATER
STEP 1: Turn off the water.
If there is a leaking water heater, as a first step you have to turn off the water to your tank. Your water heater tank should have a dedicated shutoff valve on the cold inlet pipes.
STEP 2: Turn off the power supply.
Follow the steps below for either an electric or a gas water heater.
Electric Water Heater:
If you have an electric water heater and are experiencing difficulty, we recommend that you shut off the power at the breaker before working with the tank. Just flip the breaker to off.
Gas Water Heater:
If you have a leaking gas-powered water heater, we recommend that you shut off the gas supply before working with the tank. There should be a dedicated gas shut off valve on the gas line leading to the tank.
STEP 3: Determine the location of the leak.
Once your water and power have been turned off, you can better assess the situation and determine where exactly the leak may be coming from.
Temperature and pressure release valve is one of the most safety devices in your water heater. If the tank heats up and the pressure gets too high, valve will open a release water to prevent tank from exploding. After the valve discharges it should close all the way and no water would be dripping.
First check the drain tube, if there is water dripping then it is possible that spring is corroded and valve is not closing properly. Additionally check to see whether any water leaking around the thread.
If there is a slow continuous leak, then it is best to replace the release valve.
That may be one cause, for other causes check the inlet and outlet, where pipes connect to your water heater are often sources of leaks. Check the cold water intake and hot water output connections.
STEP 4: Drain the water tank
If you have a tank water heater, draining your water heater is the most essential step.
Find the drain valve near the bottom of your water heater and attach a garden hose to it. Run the hose to a floor drain or sump pit. With the hose in place, open the valve. Once you open the drain valve, you may notice the water either doesn’t flow or doesn’t flow very well. This is because there’s a vacuum in the water heater. To break the vacuum, open any hot water faucet in your home. This will let air into the water tank and allow it to drain more easily. Once you establish a good flow, the whole tank should drain in about an hour.
Step 5: Repair or Replace
As stated above, when a water heater leaks it can be a serious problem and action needs to be taken as quickly as possible. Depending on the type of leak, you’ll either need to repair or replace your water heater. In both cases, it’s highly recommended that you call a professional plumber.
When you call a professional plumber from Wrench it up, we are trained and prepared to handle any issue they encounter. If you’re replacing your water heater, you may want to consider moving to a tankless system.
Call Wrench it up Plumber at (416) 800-5050 for water heating repair service! We’ll find the location of the water heater leak and take care of it quickly.