Leaky Water Heater?

Water heater emergencies are never fun, and they never happen when it’s convenient. However, if you have a leaking water heater, there are a few things you can do.

Turn Off the Water

When you notice your leaking water heater, turn off the water supply to it. Even if the problem turns out to be small, this is a great first step because it protects your home from potential water damage. Most water heaters have a dedicated shutoff valve. Look at the pipes where cold water comes into the heater. If the valve is a wheel, turn it as far to the right as you can. If it’s a handle, turn it 180 degrees from where it currently is. Now the water supply should be off.

how to fix a leaky water heater

If you can’t find this valve or it’s not working, you can turn off the main water valve to your home. This is usually in your utility space, in your basement, or on the outside of your home.

If you can’t find or turn off either of these valves, give us a call. We will talk you through the process or send someone out to help you find it and get that water turned off. 

You may also want to turn off the power supply to your water heater. If it’s electric, you can flip the dedicated breaker in your circuit box. If it is gas, you can turn off the gas at the shutoff valve on the gas line that leads to the water heater. 

Finally, you may need to drain your water heater. Attach a hose to the drain valve and put the other end in a floor drain or a large bucket. Open the valve and let the water flow. 

Check Your Leaking Water Heater

You can give us a call anytime your water heater leaks, but there are a few things you can check for yourself if you want to. 

First, try running some hot water. Note that you may have to turn both the power and the water to your water back on in order to do this (your water heater should store hot water, but some will not run properly if that valve isn’t open). If the leak goes away, then it was merely condensation and you don’t need to worry about it.

You may also have a leaky water heater because of a loose drain valve. This is the faucet with the knob at the top of your water heater. Before you try to fix this, run some hot water so that the inside temp of your heater can cool a little. Then, turn everything off on your water heater again and hold a bucket under the valve. Open the valve with a screwdriver and allow water to flow into the bucket. Careful! It may be hot! After water sprays for a minute or so, tighten the valve again. If the leak stops, congratulations! You fixed your water heater!

Finally, check the temperature setting on your water heater. If it’s over 120 degrees, it could cause a leak out of your temperature-pressure release valve. Turn it down and see if the leak stops. If it doesn’t, it’s time to call a plumber. 

Call Scott English for Water Heater Repairs in Orange County!

No matter what happens, we are here for you at Scott English. We have plumbers standing by 24/7 (yes, even on holidays!) so that we can take care of your leaking water heater whenever the problem arises. You don’t need to worry anymore because we’ll get everything taken care of to get your home back to normal.