What to Do If Your Water Heater Starts Leaking

Posted on: 5 December 2016


Although your water heater is an incredibly important appliance in your home, it's very easy to neglect it. Water heaters are traditionally kept in basements or garages, so the old adage, "out of sight, out of mind," can easily apply to the device. However, failing to properly maintain your water heater could lead to a nasty leak that you don't find out about until severe damage has been done. Use this information to learn more about what to do if your water heater springs a leak.

Determine What Part of the Water Heater Is Actually Leaking

The first thing you want to do when you discover that your water heater is leaking is determine where the water is coming from. The location of the leak will let you know how you should proceed.

Take a look at the drain valve. This is the valve that is typically located on the front of the appliance at the very bottom of the tank. This is the lever that allows water to be dispelled from the unit. If the leak is coming from this area, you're generally in good shape. It could just mean that you need to have the valve replaced because it has loosened up or become warped over the years.

However, if you check the drain valve and it comes up empty, this could mean that the tank itself is leaking. If this is where the leak is coming from, you may want to brace yourself: you just may need a new water heater. The best way to determine whether that is the case is to have a heating, cooling, and ventilation (HVAC) contractor come out and do a thorough inspection of your unit.

Consider Getting Professional Moisture-Removal Services

After you've determined the source of the leak and resolved the problem, you may want to consider getting professional moisture-removal services. Even if it appears that you were able to completely dry the affected areas, there could be hidden dangers that are invisible to your naked eye.

Wherever there's moisture, there's the threat of mold. Rather than take a chance on causing harm to you or your family, it's best to get a professional in who can use their tools and products to ensure that your home is free from moisture and mold.

Taking the appropriate steps when you notice that your water heater is leaking is the best way to protect the investment you've made in your home. After your water heater starts leaking, follow these steps so you can know how to proceed with water-heater repair.