Why Is My Water Heater Leaking?

Water leaks of any kind can cause damage to your Indianapolis area home. When leaks originate from a water heater, the potential for serious water damage exists. If you’re wondering why your hot water heater is leaking, it is likely one of the following common issues.

Why Is My Hot Water Heater Leaking?

Water heater leaks can stem from various malfunctions within the system or faulty components.

1. Leaks from Water Heater Pipe Connections

Leaks at the connections where cold water pipes run into the water heater and hot water pipes run out of the tank are at the fitting joints. If you are handy, you can use repair fittings to repair the leak. Calling a professional plumber at B&W Plumbing and Heating will ensure there are no other fittings ready to leak.

While not as common, leaks due to pipe deterioration can also cause water heater leaking in this area. This is most likely to occur in older homes with older pipes and should be addressed by a plumber.

2. Loose Drain Valve

Tank water heaters have a drain valve near the bottom of the tank which is used to drain the tank of hot water when performing maintenance. Leaks can form when the valve is loose or malfunctions. Try tightening the valve to see if the leak resolves. If not, you may need to replace the water heater. Attach a garden hose to the valve and route it to a drain or out of your home to prevent further water leakage and damage until the needed repair is made.

3. Leaky Pressure Relief Valve

A tank water heater’s pressure relief valve lets water out of the tank to relieve pressure when internal temperatures become too hot. This component is a valve near the top of the tank that has an attached length of pipe running down the tank’s side.

The pressure relief valve is a safety valve. If it releases, then either the water heater has an issue with the thermostat or the relief valve has failed. Leaks at the pressure relief valve usually mean the component requires replacement.  

4. Moisture at the Vent

Gas water heaters are vented to let combustion byproducts out of the home. It is possible for this vent to become blocked or obstructed due to damage, which leads to the formation of moisture as the combustion gases cool and condense. Check the vent and flue pipe for damage and obstructions. Turn off the water heater and clean out any obstructing materials. If the flue pipe needs to be repaired or replaced, call your plumber.

5. Leaks from the Tank

As water heaters age, their materials can deteriorate, especially if there is a great deal of sediment inside the tank due to a lack of maintenance. Rust forms and deteriorates tank wall material, creating leaks. Unfortunately, there is no repair solution for this type of water heater leak. If the leak is coming from your water tank, it’s definitely time to replace your water heater.

Indianapolis Water Heater Replacement Services

If you’re wondering why your water heater tank is leaking, call B&W Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Drains to get to the bottom of the water heater malfunction affecting your system. Our licensed plumbers inspect water heaters of all makes and models, providing repairs when possible and skilled water heater replacement services when not. Contact us today to schedule service.