What Causes Most Water Heater Leaks & How To Prevent Them

Person working on the bottom of a water heater

Water heaters are an essential part of any home’s plumbing system. They provide hot water for bathing, washing dishes, and laundry. However, water heater leaks can be serious, causing water damage and increasing energy bills. Here are the most common causes of water heater leaks and how to prevent them.

Where Do Water Heaters Leak?

Water heaters usually leak from the bottom of the tank or near the drain valve. There’s likely a leak if you notice water pooling on the floor around your water heater.

Why Your Water Heater Tank Is Leaking From the Bottom

A faulty or worn-out valve often causes a leak from the drain valve. The drain valve releases water from the tank to flush out the sediment that can build up at the bottom of the tank over time. If the valve isn’t tightly closed or damaged, it can cause water to leak out.

Several factors can cause a leak from the bottom of the tank. One common cause is rust and corrosion. Over time, the tank can rust and develop small holes, causing water to leak out. A leaking tank can also be caused by a damaged or loose pipe fitting, allowing water to seep out.

Another potential cause is a faulty temperature and pressure relief valve. The T&P valve relieves pressure and prevents the tank from overheating. If the valve isn’t functioning correctly, it can cause water to leak out of the tank.

What Should I Do If I See a Water Heater Leak?

If you suspect a water heater leak, acting quickly to prevent water damage is important. Here are the steps you should take:

  1. Turn off the power supply or gas supply to the heater.
  2. Shut off the water supply to the heater.
  3. Call a licensed plumber or HVAC technician for emergency repair.

It’s important to have a professional address the issue as soon as possible to prevent further damage to your home and make sure your water heater is functioning safely and efficiently.

Are Water Heater Leaks Dangerous?

Water heater leaks can be dangerous if they go unnoticed or undetected. Pressure can build up, causing the tank to rupture, which causes flooding and water damage. Leaking water can also cause electrical hazards and personal injury from scalding water.

Signs of a water heater leak to look out for include:

  • Lack of hot water from faucets
  • Loss of water pressure
  • Warped or stained ceiling
  • Pooling at the water heater’s base

How To Prevent Your Water Heater From Leaking

Preventative maintenance is essential to keep your water heater running efficiently and prevent leaks. Here are some tips to prevent water heater leaks:

  • Schedule annual maintenance: Regular inspections and maintenance by a licensed plumber or HVAC technician can prevent leaks.
  • Flush the tank regularly: Flushing the tank can prevent sediment buildup, which can cause leaks.
  • Replace the anode rod: The anode rod helps prevent rust and corrosion in the tank. Replace it regularly to extend the life of your water heater.

If you suspect your water heater is leaking or need any other water heater services, contact Andreas Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning today. Our licensed and insured technicians provide emergency service, specials, and financing options for your convenience.

Call (610) 377-5261 to schedule water heater repairs in northern or central New Jersey.