Temperature and pressure relief valve leaks, which are fairly common, can be fixed by ensuring the operating temperature is not too high and cleaning mineral deposits. The process of repairing a leaking water heater varies depending on where the leak occurs.
A water heater may leak due to problems with a drain valve, condensation, excessive pressure or age. Some of these issues are resolved by making adjustments, while others require replacing the heater.
With instructions, a homeowner can perform minor repairs on a leaking water heater. If the problem is hazardous, such as escaping gas or a flooded floor if the water heater is electric, a local plumber must repair it.
Owners can replace the heating element on an electric water heater to repair one of the most common problems that occur with these units, a lack of hot water. If the tank is leaking, it is beyond repair and requires replacement.
A common cause of a leaking water heater is a loose drain valve. Other common causes may be too much pressure inside the tank and an old or worn-out tank.
The cost for repairing a standard hot water heater varies based on the nature of the repair work, not the size of the unit, so large water heaters typically don't cost more to maintain and repair. Large commercial units, however, may command higher repair bills.
Water heater repairs are typically safe to perform if the unit is unplugged before being opened. Those working on gas units also need to make sure the gas valve is properly closed.
A hot water heater is important because without one you would not be able to use any hot water in the home without first manually heating it.
Under its Extended Protection Plan, Lowe's provides a technician to service water heater parts during the life of the plan. According to the Lowe's website, the plan covers electrical and mechanical issues, and problems caused by dust, heat and humidity. It also covers failure caused by normal wear
Water heater elements typically must be replaced if they break. While those with specialty tools and experience with electrical work might be able to fix a broken heating element, the relatively low cost of replacement generally dissuades people from doing so.