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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

What Causes a Leaking Hot Water Heater?

4/6/2021 (Permalink)

What Causes a Leaking Hot Water Heater?

Conventional storage water heater tanks are the most popular type of water heating system for a single-family home, providing a ready reservoir of 20 to 80 gallons of hot water.  They operate by releasing hot water from the top of the tank when you turn on the hot water tap. To replace that hot water, cold water enters the bottom of the tank, ensuring that the tank is always full.  Water heater tanks are typically fueled by natural gas, propane, fuel oil or electricity.

Water leakage around the base of the tank can be caused by leaking valves, connections, or from the tank itself.  Possible causes include:

  • Faulty T&P (temperature and pressure) relief valve
  • T&P valve leak due to excessive pressure, overheating or stuck
  • Leak from overhead or nearby plumbing connection
  • Leaking water tank (corrosion likely)
  • In an electric water heater, leakage from a loose heating element bolt(s) or bad gasket

If you are handy and want to tackle repairs to your leaking water heater yourself, the about.com website gives good instructions for fixing leaky gas and electric water heaters.  Otherwise, we recommend calling a licensed plumber.


SERVPRO of Grand Prairie  is here for all of your restoration needs.

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