What Causes a Water Heater to Leak?

When was the last time you stepped into a cold shower and actually enjoyed it? Water heaters add comfort to our everyday lives and we often take them for granted when they are working properly. We will all eventually come to experience the day where we step into the shower and are smacked in the face with cold water or experience low water pressure and lukewarm temperatures when trying to wash the dishes. Both of these issues can be causes by a leak in your water heater and knowing what to look for will make fixing it that much faster (and easier!).

water heater

Drain Valve

One of the many common causes for a water heater to leak is a loose drain valve. You may attempt slowly tightening the value with a wrench until snug. May sure to slowly tightened as over tightening can break the valve and cause a bigger problem.

Too Much Pressure

If there is too much pressure built up inside of your tank, the excess pressure will push water out of the tank, typically from the top of the unit or through one of the valves. There are various reasons pressure can build inside your tank. For this issue, we highly recommend having a licensed plumber, such as Plumbing 911, to come help as these types of issues left unresolved can create an emergency situation.

Aging Tank

The average water heater lasts an average of 8-14 years. Most water heaters come with a 6-year manufacturer warranty on the tank and parts. There are brands that are better built than others too, but the lifespan can be lessened based on water quality, usage and other factors. As your water heater approaches the end of its lifespan, it may begin to rust and corrode.

As the corrosion worsens, water will begin to leak out of your tank, typically from the bottom of the unit. If this occurs, this is an unfortunate sign that it’s time to replace your water heater. You will want to call Plumbing 911 as soon as you see water leaking from the bottom of the unit, as delaying can allow the inside core of the tank to complete collapse thus flooding your home with 40+ gallons of water. Plumbing 911 is able to come out and install water heaters same day to prevent this nightmare from occurring.


Condensation on your hot water heater is completely normal, but many homeowners will confuse it for a water heater leak. Since this is not caused by a major problem, simply wipe down the outside of your water heater to remove the condensation.

To schedule your appointment for service, repair, or installation of a new hot water heater, call Plumbing 911 toll free at (866) 720-0911.

2 responses to “What Causes a Water Heater to Leak?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

One call,
we handle it all!

Your home’s 911 for all Plumbing (water, gas & sewer), Drains, Water Heaters and Sump Pump needs.