Leaking Hot Water Service? What Should I Do?

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You came home to a puddle of water right next to your hot water unit, what should you do?

A leak on your hot water system is not something that you should put off for another day. A simple leak in your hot water system can be a symptom of a much larger issue with your hot water and can lead to a more serious problem. A dripping leak today might become a gushing one tomorrow. Typically, our hot water system has an average lifespan of 10 years depending on how well maintained they are.

We usually don’t pay much attention to this appliance since we barely have any issue with it. The only time that we take notice is when we already encountered a problem with our hot water. So a small leak might even go unnoticed for quite some time until we barely get any hot water running out of the taps or worse, no hot water coming out at all.

If you got a leak in your hot water system, these are the things that you should do.

1. Identify where the leak is coming from – Check if the leak is coming from the top of the tank or the bottom of it. Typically, it’s much easier to fix a leak on the top of the tank and one from the bottom. A bottom leak usually indicates that there is a problem with the tank itself. Over time, the tank can accumulate residue inside which can cause the tank itself to spring a leak.

Water Tank | The Plumbing Doctor

If that is the cause of the leak, then you might consider replacing the unit. If the leak is coming from the pressure release valve, check the volume of water coming out from it. It’s normal for water to come out of the pressure release valve but if you get a puddle of water or a bucketful of water from the leak, then you might to have the valve replaced. If the leak is coming from the top of the tank, it can be due to a faulty anode rod, a loose pipe or a leaking valve on the cold water pipe. 

If the cause is a faulty anode rod, then you would need to call your hot water experts and have it checked as soon as possible since it can lead to more serious problems with the hot water system. If the leak if from the pipes connecting the hot water system to your taps, then that is a different problem altogether.

Hot Water Tank Leaking
Leaking hot water

2. Isolate the water from your hot water system. Turn off the water to your hot water system by turning the black tap or valve. This is usually located at the bottom portion of the tank. If you can’t locate the valve, your next best course would be to turn off the main water meter. This should stop the leak soon.

So, what causes the leak? Here are some of the main reasons.

  • A corroded anode rod.
  • The cold water inlet valve is leaking.
  • A loose pipe fitting.
  • The tank itself is leaking.
  • A leaking temperature and pressure relief valve.
Black valve

3. Turn off your hot water system. If you got a gas hot water system, locate the gas isolation valve and turn that off. If you are unable to find it, turn off the gas by shutting off the main gas meter. If you have an electric, solar or heat pump, turn off the circuit breaker on your main board so as to cut off electricity on your hot water system.

Hot Water Valve
Gas isolation Valve

4. Immediately call your expert plumber to take a look at your hot water system. Remember, fixing the issue as early as possible for even such a simple leak on your hot water can prevent serious problems from occurring and can extend the lifespan of your unit.

Here is an article that you may find interesting in regards to “Summer Storms.

Plumber With Client
Discuss concern with our friendly staff

Just dial 13 10 91 and we’ll send a hot water specialist in the next 2 hours to immediately rectify your issue. We are serving Canberra, Newcastle, Central Coast, Hunter Valley, Lake Macquarie, and Port Stephens.

At The Plumbing and Electrical Doctor we have made these articles downloadable to PDF for our customers convenience.