Hot water system leaks might seem like minor problems at first, but if left untreated, they can cause serious floods in your home. Even small leaks can affect the way your hot water system works, leaving you with not enough hot water for showering and cleaning. Here are the steps you need to take if you notice a leak in your hot water system.
1. Identify the Leak
First, try to identify which part of your hot water system is leaking. Sometimes, damage to the tank can cause it to spring a leak, whereas other leaks arise around the temperature and pressure relief valves. Pipe joints are another common site of hot water system leaks. Finding the source of the water will let you know which part of your hot water system needs to be repaired or replaced.
2. Turn Off the Water
Water leaking from the hot water tank or pipes can cause serious damage to your home and its furnishings. Turn off the water at the mains to minimize the scale of the flood. Leave the water turned off until the problem is fixed.
3. Call a Plumber
A professional plumber can accurately identify the problem with your hot water system. They can then tighten the pipe joints or order new parts to replace pipes, valves or tanks that are corroded and leaking. Unless you have experience with plumbing, it is usually not a good idea to try to take handle hot water system repairs by yourself.
4. Decide Whether to Repair or Replace
If your hot water tank or water heater is leaking, you will have to decide whether to repair or replace this vital part of your home's hot water system. Hot water system repairs are often the more affordable choice, although replacing an old water heater with a newer model could save you money on your energy bills, as newer appliances are often much more effiicient than older ones.
5. Compare Your Options
If you do decide to replace your water heater, you will need to decide which kind of heater to choose. There are many options, including gas, electric and solar water heaters. Solar heaters are often seen as the green choice, although efficient electric water heaters can also be eco-friendly if you get your electricity from an environmentally conscious supplier. Not all water heaters are suitable for all properties, so be sure to ask your plumber for advice.