Important Message Regarding Coronavirus - Read More

Proudly Serving the Lehigh Valley since 1988

Why Is My Water Heater Leaking?

A water heater leaking from the bottom

Your water heater is responsible for warming the water you use to cook, shower, clean dishes, and wash your hands. When it’s working correctly, you don’t even think about it. However, when you have a water heater leaking, it can disrupt your daily routine.

A water heater is a closed system, so any water you see outside the tank shouldn’t be there. Tank leaks can alert you to more significant problems within the system. When homeowners ignore a water heater leak, water damage can affect floors, walls, and other items. 

Curtis Total Service is your reliable plumbing repair company in Lehigh Valley, PA, and we know why you may have a water heater leaking. We have trained and experienced plumbing professionals who can handle any water heater issue. Let’s look at some of the possible causes of water leaks.

What Are the Causes of Water Leaks?

Discovering a water heater leaking is always an unpleasant surprise. Out of all the issues that cause a water heater to leak, the most common are:

  • A deteriorated gasket.
  • A faulty temperature/pressure relief valve.
  • A loose pipe connection.
  • Corrosion that causes tank cracks.

These issues are just a few reasons you have a water heater leaking. Sometimes, the problem is minor, and you can repair it independently. However, most problems are more serious, so you should call a plumber for a proper diagnosis and correction of the issue. Here are the most common reasons you have a water tank leaking, including suggestions for handling the problem.

Deteriorated Gasket

If your home has an electric water heater, the gaskets that hold its heating elements in place can gradually wear down. One of these elements is near the top of your water heater, and one is near the bottom. 

A deteriorated gasket can leave a small hole for water leakage near the top or bottom of your water heater. This can gradually drain the water from your heater and cause a big problem.

What you should do about it: If you believe the leak results from a deteriorated gasket, call a professional plumber for assistance. A plumber can perform an inspection and replace a worn gasket.

Faulty Temperature/Pressure Relief Valve

Your water heater has a temperature and pressure relief valve (t&p valve) on the top or side of your tank, depending on the model. It ensures the safe operation of your water heater by releasing water from the tank to decrease its internal pressure. 

Over time, mineral deposits can build up in the t&p valve, preventing it from closing completely. This situation allows water or steam to leak from the water heater. 

What you should do about it: The most effective way to determine if your temperature/pressure relief valve is faulty is to contact a plumber. A professional plumber can inspect and replace the valve if necessary.

Loose Pipe Connection

A leak near the top of your water heater may result from a loose pipe connection. Your water heater has two pipes connected to the top: one carries cold water into the tank, and the other delivers hot water to your home’s plumbing system. 

Water can leak from these connections if they’re loose or rusty. 

What you should do about it: If water appears to be leaking from one of these connection points, use a pipe wrench to tighten them. However, if the connections won’t tighten or the water leaks directly from the pipes, you should contact a plumber for help.

Cracked Tank

A cracked tank may be your problem if water leaks from the side or bottom of the tank. In addition, the inner lining in older water heaters can develop corrosion. 

Excess sediment can also build up in the tank’s base, which can speed up corrosion and cause cracks. Additionally, consistently high water pressure in the tank can produce stress fractures, leading to leaks from the bottom of the tank.

What you should do about it: Unfortunately, once your water heater has a crack, there’s nothing a plumber can do to repair it. Instead, they’ll need to turn off the power and install a new water heater. 

Water Heater Leaking? Call Curtis Total Service Right Now!

If you have a water heater leaking in your home, address the problem immediately. Over time, it will only worsen and cause damage to your property. Contact Curtis Total Service right now to prevent severe damage to your home. 

Our plumbing professionals can diagnose the issue, offer a solution, and make the repair. In addition, if your electric or gas water heater is near the end of its life, we offer water heater replacement in the Lehigh Valley, PA, and surrounding areas. 

Curtis Total Service also provides service for your electrical and HVAC appliances. Our family-owned company has been serving Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, Nazareth, and the rest of the Lehigh Valley for over 30 years. Give us a call today!