When you walk past your home’s water heater only to discover that your socks are now wet, your heart sinks. This appliance is often referred to as the unsung hero of every home for a good reason. No one ever thinks of their water heater until it is too late. And if you just stepped in a puddle, you might be assuming that you are going to be forking out some cash for a replacement. But that is not necessarily the case if you know a reliable and honest plumber.
Water Heater Basics
While you are taking off your wet socks and begrudgingly looking for the offending leak, there are a few bits of information to keep in mind. First, the industry-standard life expectancy for a conventional water heater is between 8 and 12 years. So if yours is inside that window, a replacement could be your best investment. The deciding factor is typically the level of care you have provided. If it has been drained and flushed each year, it could still have a few good years left. But if you have no idea what it means to drain and flush the tank, then you might be off to purchase a new water heater.
Taking Care Of The Business At Hand
A leaking water heater is going to require some professional help. But before making that call, you need to turn off the power to the unit. If your water heater is electric, turn off the breaker in your electrical panel. If it is gas, close the valve on the supply line. Next, close the valve on the supply water line to prevent more water from entering the leaking tank. With the power and water off, you can reach for your phone to call in the pros.
Common Water Heater Leaks That Can Be Repaired
The most important thing to remember is that many water heater leaks can be repaired for a fraction of the cost of a replacement unit. Some of the most common include:
- Drain Valve- A drain valve can fail or begin to leak on occasion. But the great news is that these valves can easily be replaced very cost-effectively.
- Temperature And Pressure Relief Valves- All water heaters have valves for monitoring the water temperature and pressure inside the tank. If one of these valves wears out, you will see a drip or even a stream of water leaking from it. But again, these are replaceable and will be much more affordable than buying a new water heater.
- Leaking Pipes- Though you might have no idea how to fix a leaking copper pipe, your plumber can make the repair very quickly and affordably.
All of these are somewhat minor issues as long as you notice the leak shortly after it appears. They will necessitate replacing the water heater if the water has been leaking long enough to damage the tank.
The Common And Costly Leak
If water is oozing from the wall of the water heater’s holding tank, you will be looking for a replacement. Corrosion has eaten through the tank, and there is no safe way to repair it. In addition to corrosion from the inside of the tank, a water leak can also cause the tank to corrode from the outside in. That is why it is essential to catch that leaking valve or fitting quickly and have it repaired.
As soon as you have your leaking water heater shut off, call (937) 749-7097. The licensed plumbers at Buckeye Plumbing & Property Solutions are here to provide you with reliable and cost-effective solutions 24/7.