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Why Is My Water Heater Leaking from the Bottom ?

water heater leaking from bottom Browns

Is your water heater leaking from the bottom? Water heaters can leak for a variety of reasons. Determining exactly where it is leaking from is essential. Sometimes the cause is something as simple as a loose drain valve. It could be much more severe though, like a corroded hot water tank.

The professional plumbers at Brown’s give an inside look at some common causes of water heater leaks and what to do about them.

Common Causes for Hot Water Heater Leaks

Leaking Tank

So, the bad news first. If your water heater is leaking from the bottom of the tank, chances are you’ll need a water heater replacement. A leak from the bottom usually means the tank has rusted out due to sediment build-up. Any small leaks not properly addressed will eventually become larger and more dangerous problems.

Leaking Drain Valve

If your water heater is leaking from the bottom drain valve, rather than the tank itself, there is good news. Drain valves can be replaced. If the drain valve is the source of your leak, it’s possible it has become loose or simply needs replacing.

Leaking Pressure Relief Valve

If your water heater is leaking from the bottom at a tube, chances are the temperature and pressure relief valve could be faulty or that the pressure or temperature is too high. First, check your thermostat setting to ensure it’s not turned up too high. If the temperature is fine, you may need to replace the pressure relief valve.

What to Do If You Have a Leak from the Bottom of Your Water Heater

Regardless of what caused the leak, your number one priority should be protecting you, your family and your home. If your water heater is located inside, limiting water damage (and a costly insurance claim) is critical.

If you notice a leak from the bottom of your water heater, first, turn off the power. For electric water heaters, find the breaker on the main electrical panel (which is hopefully labeled). This should be a dedicated breaker and won’t shut off anything else. Flip this to the OFF position.

For gas water heaters, find the ON/OFF switch located on the heater itself, toward the bottom of the unit. Turn this to OFF.

Next, turn off the water supply. If you don’t, the water heater will continue to refill itself. Locate the water supply inlet valve or lever toward the top of your water heater and turn this to the OFF position.

If the leak is already overflowing the overflow pan, attach a hose to the drain valve and run it to a nearby drain or outside. Keep in mind that the water inside water heater tanks is most commonly around 125° F, up to 190° F. Any water temperature in this range can lead to severe injuries, including first degree burns. Always take extra precautions to avoid any contact with the heated water. If you don’t feel comfortable with these steps, always call a licensed plumber to make the repairs.

Water Heater Repair Services in Monmouth County, NJ

With any water heater leaks, diagnosing and fixing the problem is of high priority. Leaks won’t magically disappear on their own. Never hesitate to call in the professionals to get the job done safely and efficiently.

Our team of repair service professionals can help diagnose the root cause of your water heater leak quickly and efficiently! We offer a variety of dependable service options for commercial and residential properties throughout Monmouth or Ocean County, NJ. If you are dealing with water heater repair issues or require an HVAC maintenance checkup, call Brown’s Heating, Cooling and Plumbing at 732-741-0694.