What Causes A Hot Water Heater Relief Valve To Leak? A Detailed Guide!

What causes a hot water heater relief valve to leak? It could be due to two reasons for the valve to open with excessive pressure or temperature, and the valve is faulty.

An actual leak occurs when an issue is in the defective valve. The installation of a new pressure valve set can cost you around $350.

What causes a hot water heater relief valve to leak

Lucky are you if you are a DIY-type or hands-on homeowner to purchase and install a new one, but it requires four to five years before the pressure relief valve is replaced. So, replace it at its time to prevent more issues from occurring. So this is just an overview, so read on further!


Understanding The Purpose Of Water Heater Relief Valve

Thermal expansion is responsible for causing the pressure in the tank build-up after the water heats up in the water heater. Next, the device faces the chances of explosion after the pressure increases. The relief valve serves as a mechanism for avoidance of this issue. The pressure or temperature in the tank exceeding a specific level opens up the relief valve and enables water to drain completely from the tank. Then, cold water is added to the tank lowering the pressure and temperature inside.


What Causes Your Hot Water Heater Relief Valve To Leak?

The relief valve can open slightly while water permits escape, mainly if the water heater’s supply water pressure is extremely high. This is something unusual and is not often observed but you can test the water pressure in the system on a DIY approach. Nevertheless, the pressure test measures the correct fittings in the home improvement stores. The majority of test gauges feature adapters for different outlet fittings.

It is outside the faucet that it is easy to conduct a test. So, follow the gauge directions when performing an examination and learning the pressure of pipes in a home. Understand the usual water system pressure can vary from 40 to 8-0 pounds for each square inch. The system water pressure that approaches or goes past 150 pounds for each square inch can be an issue. Moreover, extreme water pressure occurs because of several problems including the following:

  • The water heater and the closed water system cause the pressure to increase. It opens as it should and releases excessive force to consult a professional plumber to fix the issue.
  • Adjust the pressure tank and pump pressure sensor if yours is domestic water. The adjustment is easy with the pressure sensor of the domestic system. Call a qualified technician if you are not sure of the procedure.
  • Excessive pressure in the water system is never an issue, but it still can occur. High-pressure delivery from a water utility company requires calling them to fix the problem. So, installing the pressure reducer at the water meter is as suggested for this situation.

Water system over-pressurization in a home is somehow a severe circumstance. The usual plumbing systems can experience further damage because of high pressure, leading to more difficult losses. A failed valve or burst pipe can bring immense damage into your home once not discovered right away.


Things To Do When Hot Water Heater Relief Valve Leak

Call an expert plumber the moment the relief valve begins to leak. The valve is triggered as frequent signals that the pressure or temperature does not get high. In this case, it is called fixing the issue. Replace the old relief valve with a new one if it has leaks. You may also want to read about how to drain a hot water heater.


What To Do To Avoid Hot Water Heater Relief Valve Leak

The majority of people have no idea that the relief valve in the water heater soon opens when the temperature in the water tank gets too high. This is not common for the relief valve to open, considering extreme water temperatures. Most of them open the moment the water temperature reaches 210 degrees Fahrenheit. Thus, checking the water temperature, although it is never easy. Utilize a kitchen thermometer for meat as advised. Next, open the kitchen sink faucet and allow it to run for several minutes, as this ensures that you get water from the device, so check the water temperature using a meat thermometer.

The problem occurs if the water heater’s temperature is past 120 degrees Fahrenheit. It is best to adjust the water heater thermostat that lowers the temperature. Remember that this can pose a danger to the entire family and scald or burn skin. If it goes past 200 degrees, the device may soon malfunction and may demand the help of a professional plumber. So, these things you keep in mind apart from what causes a hot water heater relief valve to leak.


Other Problems That Can Cause Leaks Requiring Replacement

The pressure relief valve in a water heater can fail. Some reasons cause it to die, and so it leaks after. This leakage is minor, but only several drops of it are okay. But, little leakage is never to be dismissed. Three of the common problems with the relief valves can result in minor leaks:

  • Failure to operate it always leads to sediment-build up or corrosion and leaks after;
  • Relief valves do not complement the water heater; and
  • The faulty or wrong relief valve.


It’s A Wrap!

Now you learn what causes a hot water heater relief valve to leak, and it’s due to two reasons: trigger occurs in the valve and faulty valve. More info is shared too regarding how to fix if leaks occur and understanding more the purpose of the component helps. Don’t hesitate to know these things too; read about how to install a gas hot water heater and how to clean hot water heater.

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