Common causes of water heater leaks

Common causes of water heater leaks

A water heater provides your home with a continuous supply of hot water. As with any plumbing fixture, it can develop leaks that you must address to minimize potential damage. Before you can fix any water heater leaks, you must first determine where the leak is coming from. Common culprits include the temperature and pressure relief (T&P) valve, the water heater tank, the drain valve and areas around fittings and connections.

T&P valve

This is a safety valve designed to alleviate excess temperature and pressure in the water heater tank. If the pressure and temperature exceed preset levels, the valve opens to discharge water and to relieve the pressure. Faulty or corroded T&P valves often fail to close after a discharge or test. When this happens, the valve must be cleaned or replaced.

Water heater tank

As a water heater ages, the tank can develop leaks from excessive pressure and/or rust and corrosion. If water appears to be seeping from the seams of the outer casing (usually near the bottom), there is a good chance that the tank is beginning to fail. Unfortunately, a leaking water heater tank means the entire appliance must be replaced.

Fittings and connections

Water heater leaks can develop in the supply lines attached to the appliance. A water heater includes both an incoming cold-water supply line and an outgoing hot-water line. The water lines connect to the water heater in several arrays, depending on how it was originally installed. Today's water heater installations incorporate braided supply lines that connect to both the appliance itself and the shut-off valves attached to the water lines. Older installations might be connected with soldered copper, PVC or even galvanized pipe. If you notice pools of water on top of the water heater, examine the supply lines for possible leaks.

Drain valve leak

The drain valve, located near the bottom of the tank, is used to flush sediment or drain the water heater tank. It is not uncommon for a leak to develop in the valve. Depending on the type of valve — brass or plastic — you must replace the rubber washer or the entire valve to stop the leak.

Now that you know where to look annoying water heater leaks, the next step is to repair it. Although some repairs are easy, others require experience and extensive plumbing knowledge to ensure a safe and correct repair, and to avoid damaging the appliance or home. Best to leave the repairs to the professionals and call a licensed plumber.

Image source: Flickr

4.7 out of 5 stars - 5020 votes

4.7 Stars (5020 Reviews)

Robert came out quickly and did a fantastic job. He found the leak quickly and did a quality repair to a poorly joined pipe by the builder. I am very pleased with the work provided. He went the extra mile and also replaced the pine straw that was removed for the repair. Work was NOT cheap but... Robert came out quickly and did a fantastic job. He found the leak quickly and did a quality repair to a poorly joined pipe by the builder. I am very pleased with the work provided. He went the extra mile and also replaced the pine straw that was removed for the repair. Work was NOT cheap but I got what I needed - immediate response and repair. I recommend if you are in a pinch.
Great service and work done really good. Steven E. hands down the best. The way he works with the machine, makes it look easy. He explained every detail about the job we was going to do. And all his knowledge is awesome. I will recommend him and the company to anyone needing service at their... Great service and work done really good. Steven E. hands down the best. The way he works with the machine, makes it look easy. He explained every detail about the job we was going to do. And all his knowledge is awesome. I will recommend him and the company to anyone needing service at their homes. Thank You Steven!
Steven was very knowledgeable and educated us on septic tanks. We luckily had gravel drainage so he recommended cleaning out our septic tank completely and putting biodegratible in the drainage field. He was here from 4:00-6:30 and explained everything to my husband. In the past when we had our... Steven was very knowledgeable and educated us on septic tanks. We luckily had gravel drainage so he recommended cleaning out our septic tank completely and putting biodegratible in the drainage field. He was here from 4:00-6:30 and explained everything to my husband. In the past when we had our septic tank pumped they did it incorrectly. I feel confident in Steven’s work and we have a 12 month guarantee. It was costly but for what he did worth every penny. Thank you Steven for your expertise job.
Steven was so awesome and very knowledgeable of the system that he taught me a lot. He did a good job alone and I would recommend and already did to someone else. I like the fact he drove a long way and there was no charge for him to come out! I will use him again in another 4-5 years if he... Steven was so awesome and very knowledgeable of the system that he taught me a lot. He did a good job alone and I would recommend and already did to someone else. I like the fact he drove a long way and there was no charge for him to come out! I will use him again in another 4-5 years if he still with the company! Thanks Steven again!
David O. Showed up on time and prepared. Very professional at his craft. Explained everything in detail, and got the job done! I will definitely be giving Rooter Plus my business going forward! Thank you David O.!!!
Ken H was excellent! He was professional and efficient in diagnosing my problem with my water heater. He offered various options for replacement and went out of his way to get the job done the same day. I would highly recommend him and Rooter Plus!
Great customer experience, with experienced staff. I called the office for water leakage on Sunday morning and they schedule me with Technician arrival in 30 mins. Jason reached on time, investigate the problem and able to find the source of leak in few minutes, which was definitely tricky and I... Great customer experience, with experienced staff. I called the office for water leakage on Sunday morning and they schedule me with Technician arrival in 30 mins. Jason reached on time, investigate the problem and able to find the source of leak in few minutes, which was definitely tricky and I believe only an expert eye like Jason can capture it. He walked me over the issue, fixed it and saved my Sunday morning. RooterPLUS is on my speed dial now for any plumbing issues.
It is usually unlikely that you see someone young working hard and have a good attitude along with it. Robert definitely displayed that while he was at work today and I had the pleasure to meet him and tell you about it. Keep up the good work Robert it will pay off!

Contact Us Today!

770-888-1931