Tips and Tricks

Why Your Water Heater Is Leaking

Not only do water heater leaks cause a loss of hot water, they also can cause water damage to walls and floors. The likelihood of a leak increases over the lifetime of your water heater. If you suspect that your water heater is in need of a repair, give Hedlund Plumbing a call. We can help you with your water heater at any time throughout the year. 

Your Water Heater Is Old 

Like with any appliance, water heaters are susceptible to aging. Water heaters tend to be more durable appliances, but on average, they will work well with no problems up to 12-15 years. If your water heater is older than that, there is a great chance it will need to be replaced in the near future. Maintenance on your water heater will also help it last longer and reduce the likelihood of a leak. 

The Hot Outlet or Cold Inlet 

With your water heater, the hot outlet or cold inlet could be the cause of the leak. Over time, these connections can corrode, leading to leaks. A common cause of a leak can be attributed to the valve. If you see water coming down the pipes going in or out of your water heater, it is likely that the valve on the pipe has malfunctioned and needs to be replaced. 

The Pressure Relief Valve Is Shot 

The temperature & pressure relief valve for your water heater helps prevent expansion & leak issues if either the temperature or pressure rise too high within the heater.  If this happens the valve opens enough to relieve that pressure build-up in order to prevent too much stress on the heater tank.  Another reason that your pressure relief valve is leaking is because your temperature is set to high. The pressure valve will release water if the temperature of the unit is above 210 degrees Fahrenheit.  It’s always a great idea to inspect the area around the heater for water leaks in case this relief valve activates. 

The Drain Valve Is Made of Plastic 

Some water heaters have a drain valve that is made of plastic. Over the years, plastic can become brittle and crack. A rubber gasket can also fail over the years and lead to a leak from your drain valve. Most of the time, your drain valve will only be used to remove sediment from your water heater and on occasion, condensation can build up on the drain valve, even though there is not a leak. 

How To Deal With Water Heater Leaks 

Many people attempt to repair a leaking water heater on their own. Some of the mechanisms described above, like the pressure relief valve, should be dealt with by a professional plumber, like Hedlund Plumbing. If you suspect that your water heater is leaking, notice signs (like excessive noise or poor performance), or just want to have a professional do some maintenance on your water heater, give Hedlund Plumbing a call today.

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