Know where your water heater is located
Some water heaters are in the attic of your home and others may be in your garage or utility room. If your water heater is in your attic and develops a small leak you may notice a water stain on the ceiling below the water heater. Don’t ignore this. If you have a tank style water heater, the tank holds 40 gallons or more of water. If the leak gets worse, that’s a lot of water that can cause a lot of damage to your home. If your water heater is in your attic, watch for any signs of stains on the ceiling. And if you have easy access, an occasional visual inspection can prevent little problems from getting worse.
If your water heater is in your garage or utility room, make it a habit to occasionally give it a quick visual inspection. When water heaters leak, the leak usually will start at a weld seam or at a part that sticks out from the water. These parts are usually the pressure relief valve or tank drain valve (see diagram). Look for any buildup of water drops or condensation around these areas, water on the floor or streams of water drops. Another area to inspect is the water lines in to and out of the water heater. These water lines usually require multiple soldered joints that could fail, causing water to leak.
What to do if you discover your water heater is leaking
Todays plumbing codes require several fail safe pieces of equipment to protect your home in case of parts failure. First off, know where your water comes in to your home. Your water main will have a valve that allows you to shut off all water coming in to your home. Secondly, your water heater will have a cold water supply shut off valve on the water line that supplies water to your hot water heater. If the problem is any where after that valve, just turn off the water to the heater and the plumbing in the rest of your home will function as normal. The graphic in this post shows the most common areas on a water heater that may develop leaks. If you detect a leak, turn of the water supply and call a plumber to diagnose the best way to fix your leaking water heater.
Alliance Plumbing is the League City, Friendswood, Clear Lake and surrounding area water heater experts, learn more about our water heater services
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