While all homeowners know that they need a water heater for their home to live comfortably, many may not truly understand the importance of preventative maintenance. Keeping up with water heater maintenance can not only lower utility costs but prevent early system breakdown and costly problems like your system leaking! If you believe your system is experiencing a leak, it may be hard to determine where the leak is coming from or what is causing it! Our JD Service Now team is here to walk you through what steps to take to determine the cause of your leak safely, before calling in the experts.
Step 1:Turn Off Your Water Supply
When you notice a leak, the first thing you want to do is turn off the water supply to your water heater. If you aren’t sure where this valve is, let us explain! On top of your water heater, there should be two pipes, you will notice that one is cold and the other is warm. The cold one is your water supply pipe. Follow the pipeline until you reach the valve, and turn the valve until it stops in order to turn off your water supply.
Step 2: Turn Off The Power
The next step is to immediately turn off the power to your water heater. You should not be actively working on the leak or looking for the cause of the leak while your water heater is hooked up to the power source. If you have an electric water heater, find your circuit breaker and flip the water heater switch off. If you have a gas water heater, there is a dedicated shutoff valve at the tank's base, near the gas line.
Step 3: Troubleshooting The Cause
Now that your water supply and power are turned off, you can begin to troubleshoot what’s causing your leak. As a general rule, if your water heater is leaking from the top, the problem can be repaired. If it’s leaking from the bottom, there is a greater chance the problem is more serious and you may need to replace your water heater.
Cold/Hot Water Outlet
If you notice water collecting on the top of your system, the source of the leak is likely coming from your water supply valve, hot water outlet, or cold water inlet. Follow along the hot and cold water pipelines. Make sure your fittings are tight. If you see any leakage, this is likely the cause of your leak. This is a pretty simple fix, that you may be able to do on your own!
The drain valve is located at the bottom of your water heater and is used to drain out water when repairs or maintenance need to be performed. To determine if the drain valve is the cause of your leak, there are a few steps you can take. First, determine if the valve is completely closed. If the valve is closed but you notice moisture surrounding the area your valve may be faulty and will need to be replaced. You also want to check the area where the valve enters the tank. There should be no signs of moisture. If you do notice moisture, the cause may be coming from inside of your tank.
Inside of Your Water Heater
If the cause of your leak is coming from the inside of your tank, you won’t be able to see it from the outside looking in. In most cases, you will notice water under and around your water heater, or as we talked about previously, moisture coming from your drain valve. Even with the best care, water heaters break down and deteriorate over time. If you believe your leak is coming from the inside of your tank or simply aren't sure of the cause our team of experts is ready to TAKE GREAT CARE of you and your water heater.
While these may not be all the causes of a water heater leak, they are some of the most common that homeowners will be able to notice. Sometimes water heater leaks are inevitable but can be prevented through proper care and maintenance. If you see a leak coming from your system and aren't sure of the cause, our JD Service Now team is here to help! Give us a call today to get your water heater running RIGHT again - 919-230-8957.