When your water heater is leaking, it’s best to get the problem fixed as quickly as possible to avoid your home and belongings from becoming damaged, not to mention, to eliminate mold from producing. Even the smallest of leaks can cause a large amount of damage to your floors, walls, and any other objects that are in the water’s path, and can lead to mold or mildew formation.
According to the EPA, all homes with even the slightest water leak should be treated near immediately to avoid mold and other toxins that could be highly damaging to health.
Now that you know why it’s so important to repair a leaky water heater, this article with provide you with the necessary tips to get the problem fixed as fast as possible.
#1. Always Consider Your Safety
Water + the electricity that helps power your water heater is a dangerous combination, and one that you should keep in mind any time you are near the area. To make sure you are almost completely safe, turn off the water to the water heater via your circuit breaker or fuse. While you are at it, turn off the water before beginning your repairs.
But you aren’t quite done yet. One of the most important parts of your safety is to remain clear of the scalding hot water during the fix. After you have found your leak, remove the water from the unit using a bucket or other container.
#2. Find What is Causing the Leak
Typical leaks in water heaters can be caused by a range of factors, and targeting which one is causing the problem with allow you to find the most optimal fix.
1.) Storage Tank Leaking : Many times, storage tank leaking can be a result of corrosion. Begin looking for holes of any size in any location on the unit. If you notice any size hole at all, you will need to replace your unit all together.
2.) Plumbing Connection Leak : Examine the parts of your water heater where any inlet or outlet pipes connect to the water heater. These connections could simply just need to be tightened with a wrench or replaced, just make sure to not over-tighten them.
3.) Heating Element Leak : A leak in your heating element unfortunately means that you are going to need to look into a new unit all together.
4.) Fault in Pressure and Temperature Relief Valve : Sometimes, your T & P valves need to be flushed of debris to handle the problem. Make sure there is always a bucket underneath the valve to catch the debris. If water continues to leak after this, your water heater will need to be replaced.
5.) Excessive Pressure or Overheating of the Temperature Relief Valve : Excessive pressure can lead to water leakage if it is opened up continuously. This can easily be taken care of by adjusting the temperature on the thermostat. Lower water heat causes the T & P to not have to open as much to relieve pressure, which fixes the leakage.
#3. Inspect Before Making Any Replacements
Water heaters don’t come cheap, so making sure you have done a full inspection is quite crucial, and could cost you much less money in the long run.
If you don’t feel like you can take care of the entire problem on your own, it’s always recommended to seek help from a professional, and get some ideas from them about your options.