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Old 05-06-2009, 10:47 PM   #1
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


I found this site while trying to find out what is wrong with my 3 year old hot water tank. The valve that is 6 inches from the top has a long pipe down to about 8 inches above the floor. It is dripping hot water. Is this just because the temp is turned up too high? I turned it down slightly but it is still leaking. Any help is appreciated.
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CK

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Old 05-06-2009, 10:57 PM   #2
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


The valve may be defective, the temperature may be to high, or the pressure to high.

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Old 05-07-2009, 06:01 AM   #3
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


That is the temperature & pressure relief valve, its' purpose is to open in the event of too high a temp or too much pressure. They are set to open at specific temp/pressure as listed on the label. Very often, they will drip or leak for no reason and need to be replaced. How old is the water heater?? A leaking valve can also indicate and aging heater that may be due for replacement.
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Old 05-07-2009, 08:39 AM   #4
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Inside the T/P valve is the operating spring. These can become weak over time and cause it to leak. It may also have started to open and a piece of trash is now holding it open a bit. You can replace it for about $10.
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Old 05-07-2009, 08:48 AM   #5
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


True the valve may be defective but before you replace it you might try opening the valve manually buy flipping the metal lever connected to that valve. Be very careful as hot water will blow out that pipe you mentioned and it will be very hot. Flip the valve open and closed a few times. These valves are fairly simple devices and are pretty well made. Often it is just a little dirt or minerals that got in the valve and are causing a problem. The majority of them last the life of the water heater.

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Old 05-07-2009, 09:56 AM   #6
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Thank you all very much. The tank is 3 1/2 years old.
I have been concerned about the heat of the water because it
could scald someone
My first step will be to turn the temp down and see if it helps.
Secondly if that doesn't work I will try releasing the valve on and off to see if something may be in there.
If neither of those work I guess I will have to call someone.
Thank you all, I will let you know tomorrow.
ck
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Old 05-07-2009, 10:03 AM   #7
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Get a thermometer and check the water temp coming out of the faucet, should be in the area of 120-125.
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Old 05-07-2009, 10:40 AM   #8
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Even if you turn down the temperature of the water and it solves your problem I would open that valve and get some flow going to clear out any debris and re-seat the valve. It is not a bad idea to test these valves by opening them once or twice a year just to make sure they are not stuck in the closed position.

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Old 05-07-2009, 11:46 AM   #9
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


I won't say all the time, but most of the time, T& P is opening/ leaking because of temp or water pressure. If you open it stand out of the way ... The water is hot comming out.. I have also had the spring to break when opening. Be ready to turn the water off it this happens
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Old 05-07-2009, 01:00 PM   #10
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Thanks for the heads up Kenmac... I have never had one break but now that I know it can I will work them a little harder when I test them. I have never had one fail in anyway that did not have obvious signs of
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Old 05-07-2009, 09:02 PM   #11
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


Quote:
Originally Posted by kenmac View Post
I won't say all the time, but most of the time, T& P is opening/ leaking because of temp or water pressure. If you open it stand out of the way ... The water is hot comming out.. I have also had the spring to break when opening. Be ready to turn the water off it this happens
Wouldn't it be easier/safer to turn the electric or gas off to it then open some hot water faucets to get the hot water out or cooled down and then open the valve?

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Old 05-07-2009, 09:43 PM   #12
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Hot water tank leaking from valve pipe


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Originally Posted by Gary_602z View Post
Wouldn't it be easier/safer to turn the electric or gas off to it then open some hot water faucets to get the hot water out or cooled down and then open the valve?

Gary

Yes, it would make sense to turn off elec. or gas & relieve the hot water pressure b-4 opening / replacing the T&P . I just don't make it a habbit of opening a T&P. Scale can & sometimes will get behind the rubber seat . If this happens the only way to keep it from leaking is to replace it. Watts T&P the brand I use . Recomends to have the T&P inspected every 3 years. I just tell my customers to have them replaced every 3 years. They aren't that expensive .. they are cheap insurance.. I've seen them so corroded that they would never open it they needed to . Ever seen the show Myth Busters where they cap off the T&P on a water heater & turn up the pressure ?? The house / bldg exploades !!


Last edited by kenmac; 05-07-2009 at 09:54 PM.
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