Water Heater Leaking: Reasons and Solutions

 

“One leak will sink a ship: and one sin will destroy a sinner.”

Water heater leaking may look like a small problem but it can turn in to a fatal problem very soon, so before things get out of control, fix it.

water heater leakingJust a small leakage of water can cause damage to your walls, floors and even switch boards In extreme cases the water heater leakage can cause big problems, personal property can be damaged and the risk of electrical failure is increased. A significant flood is enough to cause the problem.

Reasons For Water Heater Leaking

  • Water heater leakage can happen for a variety of reasons. It may be as simple as a slightly open drain valve for a sharp case such as a hot water tank corroded.
  • Most of the time, it’s due to faulty plumbing connections or valves that failed. At least, heating the hot water heater is a discomfort.
  • If this small problem is not properly addressed, it can quickly turn into a major problem.
  • While a small amount of water may seem harmless, it may eventually cause significant damage to the water on the walls, floors, and soaps if the care leakage is not taken.
  • In the most severe cases, the area surrounding the water heater can be exposed to flooding.
  • What could have been a quick and inexpensive repair now turned into expensive repair bills.

Diagnosing Water Heater Leaking Problems

plumber

Step 1: Confirm The Source of The Leak

Obviously if the water is spraying out of the pipes there is an issue in your sanitary system. Sometimes, if you find a small pile of water near the bottom of the tank, the normal condensation of water heaters, pipes or nearby equipment is a drawback.

  1. In the winter, the inlet water temperature is particularly cold or the first time the water heater is heated, the situation is usually more obvious.
  2. If you have not seen any signs of leakage, please place some paper towels in your first wet place and check back regularly.
  3. If the problem does not recur after a day or two, nothing to worry, but it is best to pay attention to it.

hot water heater

Step 2: Turn Off Your Water Heater

The moment you find out that your water heater is leaking, turn off your water heater immediately.  Since electricity and water can cause blunders when mixed. Even sui gas would not co operate with water leakage. Turn off buttons and cut the power supply.

Step 3: Turn Off The Water Supply

After the electric and the sui gas supply is cut off, the next immediate step is to cut off the water supply since you need no more water in your walls or floor, obviously.

There are two main water supply gauges to the heater make sure that you turn both off:

  1. Gate valve:  Turn this off.
  2. Ball Valve: This is the second and last valve, hold it 90 degrees perpendicular to the pipe connecting heater.

Step  4: See where the Leak is Coming from

In most cases, it is not too difficult to determine the location of the leak because the water heater has a limited number of common points of failure.

It is important if a region is hard to see if the water heater is old, or the condensation is the real culprit. The following are the most common areas for discovering water heater leaks:

water heater leaking

Hot Water Heater Leaking From Bottom

If your hot water heater is leaking from bottom, you need to make sure that nothing else is affected from the leakage. Make it sure that the walls beside the heater are safe and also the floor under is not stained.

Drain valve. Near the bottom of the tank is a water heater drain valve. Used to discharge tanks for maintenance or removal of sediments. Sometimes the valve will loose, only need to tighten. At other times, the valve may fail and need to be replaced. In order to quickly repair the leak valve, simply screw the garden hose nozzle or hose cover can be.

Hot Water Heater Leaking From Top

If you find out that your water heater leaking is from top than it is a good fortune. The leakage from top is usually temporary and can be easily repaired.

However, if you notice a discharge and leave it unrepaired than the water can malfunction entering the electrical components. If you notice any leakage it is important to address the plumber as soon as possible.

The sooner you would call for plumber the better it would be for you since the water heater can be fixed on time. Due to some reason you could not call the plumber than try reading the heading below which might help you.

Hot Water Leaking From Over Flow Pipe

You can fix your hot water heater over flow pipe yourself.

  • This is what I think of things: the initial tank is filled with cold water because it is heated and it wants to expand, but since the water is almost incompressible.
  • It causes the pressure to rise sharply until the pressure of the safety valve is set, causing the valve to open and Reduce overpressure.
  • As long as the opening of a valve, whether hot or cold, should make this excessive pressure immediately dissipated, and the safety valve closed.
  • If this is the problem, then the treatment is to install the drinking water expansion tank in the water heater on the cold water supply.

 

hot water leaking

How To Repair Hot Water Heater

First, turn off the gas to the water heater, or disconnect it if the breaker is electrically powered.

  1. Close the water cut-off valve into the water heater.
  2. Open the bottom of the valve and pressure relief valve for a minute.
  3. Drain a little water to reduce the pressure.
  4. Remove the overflow pipe from the relief valve.
  5. If it has been pasted or welded in place, it may be necessary to cut it off.
  6. Use a pipe wrench to unscrew the old relief valve.
  7. Teflon tape is wound on the threads of the new valve and tightened.
  8. The overflow pipe opening is away from the tank.
  9. Use a Teflon tape on the thread to reinstall the relief valve drain.
  10. If you need to replace the drain, use a hot water pipe (and glue) (such as CPVC instead of PVC).

water heater

Types of Water Heater

Compatibility

If you water heater has 12 years of warranty and you have been using it for 15 years, maybe now it is the time to change you water heater. The new water heaters are made energy efficient, instant and have more water capacity.

However still recommended to consult an expert before deciding what’s best for your home.

Capacity

  1. Most water heaters are priced based on how much gallons they hold. For example, the family of four may need a to shower several times a day, run the dishwasher, wash the laundry twice a day for a total of 100 gallons or more. But that does not mean they need a 100 gallon tank.
  2. More importantly, consider the first hourly rating (FHR) of the tank water heater and the gallon per minute rating (GPM) of the tank less water heater as it tells you how much hot water the heater can provide in an hour.
  3. After that, depending on how much you use hot water, it may become less hot or really cool. Then, it will take some time (by model and capacity change) to return to its full FHR. Professionals can help you figure out how much capacity you need.

Types Of Water Heaters

 

Storage Tank Water Heaterwater heater leaking

 

  1. Tanks are the most common type of water heater. As the name suggests, they consist of adiabatic tanks in which water is heated and stored until needed, and then comes out of the pipe at the top of the water heater.
  2. There is also a temperature and pressure relief valve that will open if it exceeds the preset level.
  3. Natural gas water heaters typically use less energy and less cost than electric water heaters, although you should note that the cost of the gas model is higher at the time of purchase.

 

Tankless Water Heaterwater heater leaking

 

  1. Instead of storing water, the tank-free water heater uses a heating coil to heat the water as needed. They are more energy efficient than the tank, but only provide limited hot water flow per minute – about 3.5 gallons.
  2. They are best suited for those who usually do not use the shower and dishwasher at the same time while absorbing more than one person.
  3. Non-tank models are best suited for families that use natural gas to heat water; electric cars may require expensive home electricity upgrades.

 

Solar Panel Water Heatersolar panel

  1. The roof-mounted battery absorbs the heat of the sun and transfers it to the antifreeze liquid flowing into the closed loop system of the tank. Summer’s best cost savings make it an attractive place for a warm sunny area.
  2. But in the cold clouds, these savings will be lost. Most models use a backup system that is started when needed.
  3. Even with federal and local rebates, you will also spend purchasing and installing solar systems, which means you can wait 10 to 30 years to recover your costs.

Condensing Water Heater

  1. Condensation water heaters are an option if you use gas to heat up and require a capacity of more than 55 gallons per unit. These models have tanks like conventional water heaters.
  2. They capture the exhaust gases that usually drain the flue, thereby wasting energy. These gases are blown through the coil at the bottom of the unit, where the incoming cold water can absorb most of the heat.
  3. If our are looking for energy saving options than this is not a very suitable option, but if you want less cost on installing than this might be best fit for your needs.

Water Heater Features to Consider

Warranty

Everyone wants to spent there money on something that works and pays off long term, And so it is important to look for warranty of the heater and the reliability of brand to consider.

 

 

 

Plastic Vs Brass Valves

Consider installing brass over plastic since plastic is less durable than brass also brass is best for domestic as well as public water heater fittings.

 

 

 

Digital Display

Helps you monitor levels and customize actions. Some electric / heat pump mixed water heaters allow you to set a holiday mode, that is, when using only heat pump to improve efficiency.

 

The display on a solar water heater usually shows the temperature of the tank and collector.

 

Water Heater Replacement

If non of the above advice worked than you probably need to Install a new water heater. You need to call a plumber for you assistance. See if your heater is still in warranty, you could claim to the company.

If not than you probably have to spend money on new water heater.

When replacing the water heater components, be sure to replace the rubber washer to prevent leakage.

Insert the gasket into the screw of the component screw or around the bottom of the flange element.

Use the washer in place to install the new component by reversing the disassembly process and turning the component clockwise.

Tighten the components with your fingers and then tighten them 1/2 to 1 turn using a water heater element wrench.

For flange units, replace the fixing bolts.

Feedback and Comments

Give us your feedback regarding the article about water heater leaking. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask in comments section.

 

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