A leaky water heater is never something to ignore. The leak coming from your water heater has the ability to cause significant damage to your floors or walls. Additionally, if the problem is severe enough, water could start coming out of your tank and flood your home. Water heater leaks could come from a few potential sources:
- The temperature and pressure relief valve.
- Cold water and hot water pipes leaking in and out of the tank.
- The drain valve.
- Corrosion on the bottom of the water heater tank.
So what do you do if you do notice a water heater leak?
Shut the Power Off
Do you have a gas water heater tank? Before taking any other steps, be sure to shut off the gas supply to the water heater. You'll likely find the "off" switch located directly on the unit, and this is typically the best option. Otherwise if you shut off the gas supply to your home, you'll need your local utility company to turn it back on.
However if you have an electric water heater, you'll want to go to your circuit breaker to turn off the breaker that leads to the water heater. This is critical as of course, water and electricity do not mix!
Shut Off the Water
At this point, you can shut off the water. There should be a valve which is located right above the water heater. You may need to pull down a handle, or there could be a dial that you'll have to turn clockwise. If you do not see this valve, it's important to be aware that your system might be violating local codes. Be sure to check with a professional.
Find the Source of the Leak
If the water heater leak is coming from the temperature and pressure relief valve, then it's a relatively simple replacement for a trained plumber. Drain valve leaks are also typically quick fixes, as are leaks between the cold water inlet and the tank.
However, if you discover that the leak is coming from the bottom of the water heater tank, this is a clear sign that you need a replacement. The cause of this is almost always corrosion, and this is a serious issue. Once a leak of this nature starts, it won't stop.
For water heater repairs in Elgin, IL, contact Lifeline Plumbing, Heating & Cooling today.