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Old 02-14-2011, 02:54 PM   #1
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vent pipe from water heater

Forgive me because I know nothing.

We have a RHEEM gas hot water heater that is from 1999. I noticed water dripping under my deck yesterday and have tracked it down to the pipe that comes off the top side of the water heater that has a valve for releasing pressure. Model 41V405-40

Our water company recently sent out a message saying they had changed something and residents might want to buy a pressure control device. I didn't have the money for that and have not done it.

Last edited by dianetavegia; 02-14-2011 at 03:04 PM. Reason: added model number
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Old 02-14-2011, 03:24 PM   #2
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vent pipe from water heater

Welcome dianetavegia, to the best DIY'r site on the web.

Sounds like the city increased their water pressure on the main line, the PRV or pressure reducing valve would do exactly what it implies.

You may need an expansion tank with the increase pressure as well.

Sounds like you tank is outside? and the valve that is leaking is a temperature/pressure relief valve, and its discharge should not be impeded what so ever.


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Old 02-14-2011, 03:26 PM   #3
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vent pipe from water heater

that's the pressure relief valve, for just that, too much pressure in the tank. if the water company jacked up the water pressure to your house, this could cause a problem and might be the cause of water dripping from the pipe connected to the relief valve. so yes, you might need a pressure reducing valve installed.
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Old 02-14-2011, 03:50 PM   #4
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vent pipe from water heater

Water expands a little when heated.

Did the water company install something or just change some settings back at the water works?

If you have a backflow preventer going out to the water main and no faucets are dripping, as the next tankful of water is heated the expansion may force some out the pressure relief valve.

If there ialready an expansion tank above the water heater, it needs to be checked and emptied of any water inside.
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Old 02-14-2011, 09:25 PM   #5
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vent pipe from water heater

The water heater is in a room off the garage and has no extra tank. I called the water department and they said they had put on backflow prevention just a few days ago and the pressure was greatly increased.

The pipe goes above and then out a wall. Anyhow, I found a plumber to come tomorrow and bought the water pressure regulating valve and a replacement pressure release valve since they were inexpensive and the guy was going to be here anyhow.

Thanks so much for the assistance!
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Old 02-15-2011, 03:25 AM   #6
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vent pipe from water heater

always a good idea to change out a dripping t&p valve. you'll need to install an expansion tank as well. the check valve the utility company installed does not allow hot water expansion back into the main. without this expansion tank, it could allow the t&p valve to drip again or any other faucet/pipe in the house to start leaking. the tanks are pretty cheap, make sure it's installed on the cold water feed to the water heater

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