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Posted: 8/6/2001 7:43:09 AM EDT
Being a new home owner I have never had to deal with stuff like this before, so I'm hoping you guys might be able to help me out. I think the water heater is the original one that came with the house, so it's about 20 years old. There has been a little bit of water on the floor before, and but I haven't found the exact source of the leak. Today there is water all over the floor, with the obvious source being the water heater. Is there some type of maintence you need to do to these things to prevent this, or is it probably shot?
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 7:45:10 AM EDT
If it's not leaking on a pipe fitting, it's shot. Go spend a 150 bucks on a self flushing water heater.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 7:47:11 AM EDT
There should be a valve that lets off pressure if the heater get too hot or over pressure. It should be on the side near the top. Hope it is that. Probably time to "punt", it is most likely shot. When you get a new one get a good one. The efficient/well built ones may cost a bit more but you'll make it back in energy savings/longer life.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 7:54:49 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 9:40:20 AM EDT
Put a bucket under the overpressure valve to see if thats it. If its not you might want to think about replacement.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 10:11:56 AM EDT
If it's that old, chuck it. The older models aren't as efficient/safe as the new ones. And being that it is over 20 years old, it is probably running at less than 50% of it's capacity. Those things like to fill up with all kinds of crud = minerals and corrosion.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 10:58:20 AM EDT
Take it to the range and turn it into swiss cheese! You've found your leak! [heavy]
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 11:04:23 AM EDT
If it is in fact on its death bed you can be sure it will at least last until the weekend. Water heaters usually only die on the weekends when you can't get a plumber for under 3-X's normal rate. The only other time a water heater dies is when you're away on vacation. 20 years is enough. You should replace it just for convenience sake. Its much easier and cheaper to shop for a new WH while this one still works as opposed to running out in a hurry when it finally dies. Also, think of the mess you're going to avoid by draining the WH casually instead of it dumping its contents in the middle of the night.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 11:04:43 AM EDT
had the same thing happen to my water heater-leaking, but not sure where from=it was not from the fittings so something inside was shot. Got a new one-look for the better, more insulated version-for instance there was a 40 gallon that had thin insualtaon with like a 6 r value and another with r30-get the better one. (r30) it was almost twice as large, but is insulated so well that it does not even need a blanket.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 11:17:27 AM EDT
Originally Posted By HKer: Being a new home owner I have never had to deal with stuff like this before, so I'm hoping you guys might be able to help me out. I think the water heater is the original one that came with the house, so it's about 20 years old. There has been a little bit of water on the floor before, and but I haven't found the exact source of the leak. Today there is water all over the floor, with the obvious source being the water heater. Is there some type of maintence you need to do to these things to prevent this, or is it probably shot?
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20 years is good service life for a water heater. I had one go after only 10 years.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 11:53:07 AM EDT
Replace it - at 20 years it’s living on borrowed time anyway. I was able to get an extra year or two out of my electric one by replacing the gaskets around the heating elements and shoring things up with Brownells Acra-glass. However, it wasn’t worth the aggravation, I should have gotten a new one then. If yours is electric, don’t fiddle with 220-volt wires unless you really know what you’re doing (and boy is a water heater a good ground!!). Yours is almost certainly all rusted out anyway. If it “blows”, you’ll have water all over the place - both from the water in the tank and the additional water that will start pouring into the tank as it empties. I’d immediately remove anything nearby that could be damaged by water. Isn’t it wonderful being a homeowner – almost every day is a new adventure!!
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 11:54:32 AM EDT
Princeton is spot-on, we came home from vacation on a weekend to find out that ours had died, big puddle of water and all... had to wait until Monday to get it replaced.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 12:03:26 PM EDT
I'd replace it too. I hope that yours is located in a better place than mine, though. My house has it placed in the [i]attic[/i]!!! When that sucker goes, I'm going to have one heck of an insurance claim!
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 12:22:48 PM EDT
Most likely you have a gas type water heater. They're designed with a center exhaust pipe and this is where you problem lay as they get rusted through. They tend to leak slowly at first, then plug up with sediment, only to have you pulling your hair out trying to figure out what the hell, it was leaking or maybe it wasn't. This can go on for months until the most inopertune time, then flood you out. Replace while you can. Hope this helps.
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 1:21:27 PM EDT
Princeton: Water heaters usually only die on the weekends.....
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[i]I almost said "You forgot about the 3AM thing" until I reread the post. (You didn't mention holidays, & 2nd floors though).[/i][:D] . HKer, the posts above are right. I'm sure you've checked the incredibly obvious already (safety valve, drain valve, nearby lines, etc.). It's "about that time" anyway, so take a shower, flush the toilets, save a few gallons in pots, hook your garden hose to it, and start draining. Don't know how much water you need, but try like hell to get at least a 40 gallon tank in there, it doesn't much (& you'll be glad you did later). AND! If you don't already have them - NOW is the perfect time to put shutoff valves in! They'll save you a lot of trouble later, & a lot of running around when you install the thing (tonight?). [i]BTW, I can't emphasize this enough, the $119 Mexican ones are tempting, but if you plan on living there awhile,,, [b]Rheem!!![/b][/i]
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 1:26:35 PM EDT
20 years of service is unusual, mine lasted 10 years. About a year ago you could drive around the subdivision and see that lots of people had their old one waiting at the curb. Welcome to home ownership.....
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 1:31:39 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 1:35:49 PM EDT
Leaky Water Heater!! WTF?!?!? I come to AR15.com to read about hookers, guns, sex, and to do some LEO bashing, not read about leaky water heaters!!!! Sheesh, try some Leak Ender 2000 [;)] Aviator [img]www.dredgeearthfirst.com/aviator.gif[/img]
Link Posted: 8/6/2001 1:38:17 PM EDT
Mine was 16 years old (80 Gallon) before it started leaking. Just changed it out 2 weeks ago with a 50 Gallon. Took about 2 hours to do. Cost around $260.00 as also purchased a stand, drip pan and fittings to do the job.
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