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Got a Leaky Water Heater? Here’s What To Do!

leaky-water-heater-what-to-doA leaking water heater is a potentially disastrous scenario and not one you want to wake up to. Fortunately, we offer quality Clearfield, UT water heater services in case you find yourself facing water pooling around your water heater due to a leak.

In the meantime, it’s important to note that you may not need to panic. While in some cases this may mean it’s time for a new water heater, in other cases a repair is just fine. Here’s what you should do if you discover a leak.

Determine the Location of the Leak

There are two main places you should check: the drain valve and the water heater’s tank itself. If the leak is coming from the drain valve, then the only thing needed is a simple, inexpensive repair. However, if the water is coming from the tank itself, you may have a more serious problem. It’s important to know the source of the leak to determine the next step .

Condensation

A puddle of water beneath or near your water heater may not be a leak at all, but the result of condensation. This happens when most of the water inside your water heater tank is cold. It may happen while hot water usage is especially high. For example, multiple people showering while your dishwasher and washing machine are running.

The cold tank reacts with the warmer air inside your home and causes condensation, which then drips off the tank and onto the floor. The good news: this means nothing is wrong! You may want to try to even out hot water demands in your home so less than half the tank contains cold water at any time.

Pipes

If you have a typical tank hot water heater, it connects to two pipes. The cold water supply line and the hot water supply line. Both pipes usually have elbow joints so that they can bend toward the water heater. These joints can become loose or damaged and spring leaks.

Fortunately, tightening loose fitting joints is a simple fix. We don’t recommend making serious repairs on your own, but if you have the experience and are able to safely tighten these joints, go ahead and see if this solves the issue. We are happy to assist should you find this doesn’t resolve your problem.

Gaskets

This component is seen in electric water heaters. If they wear down or become damaged then they may cause leaking. If you suspect that your leak is due to an issue with the gaskets of your electric water heater, it is vital you call a professional, as working with any electrical components can become a safety hazard for the inexperienced homeowner.

Pressure Relief Valve

If pressure rises too high within your water heater tank, then the relief valve opens. Steam escapes and the pressure returns to normal. If the temperature is set too high on your water heater, then the pressure can become too great and create a leak.

This is also extremely inefficient and potentially a safety issue. We recommend keeping your hot water at approximately 120°F.

But What if the Leak Is from the Tank Itself?

If you’ve eliminated all other potential leak sources, then it may be coming from the tank itself. The inside of a water heater tank—particularly if it’s not well-maintained—can eventually corrode due to mineral deposits and from the strain of heating and cooling. This isn’t something that can be fixed, and you’ll need to replace your water heater.

Contact your water heater experts at Rentmeister Total Home Service today!

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