Why is the water heater leaking

Do you find a problem with your water heater tank?  and you wonder why is the water heater leaking? and you don’t know how to fix it?

Someday you’ll get a problem with your water heater and the tank will shut off so you have options to buy a new water heater or call a qualified person, professional or a plumber both of them they will cost you a lot of money here we give the perfect solutions to solve the problems of your water heater tank.

we will show you the most important causes that cause leaking of water heater furthermore we’ll show how to fix these causes and troubleshooting in your tank please follow the steps and instructions to know:

why is the water heater leaking

Why is the water heater leaking and how to fix it?

Cause1: No Hot Water

The most likely reasons for an electric water heater to produce NO hot water are:

  • No electric power—a common problem with new installations.
  • Burned-out upper element (Dry Fired) — a common problem with new installations.
  • Tripped Energy Cut Off (red button on the upper thermostat).
  • The water heater’s inlet and outlet connections are reversed (usually only in new installations).
  • Broken upper thermostat (or wiring).
  • A leak in the hot water side of the plumbing system exceeds the water heater’s heating capacity and makes it appear that the water heater is producing little to no hot water

Solve: Follow these steps to diagnose and correct common electrical problems:

1. Check the electric power of the water heater. No hot water is often caused by a problem with the home’s electrical wiring or circuit breakers. You’ll need a non-contact circuit tester. Follow these guidelines:

  • Locate the water heater’s circuit breaker and turn it off (or remove the circuit’s fuses).
  • Locate the electrical junction box on top of the water heater and remove the cover.
  • Identify the two power wires. The power wires are usually black/black or black/red—the green or copper wire is the ground wire.
  • Use a non-contact circuit tester to check for electrical power.
  • Turn the circuit breaker back on (or install the fuses) and check the power on both incoming power wires using a non-contact circuit tester.
  • Turn the power off and replace the cover on the electrical junction box.

If the water heater is not getting power, contact a qualified person to have your home’s wiring or circuit breakers checked.

2. Check the upper heating element. If the water heater is getting electrical power, check to see if the upper heating element has burned out. If the upper element is burned out, you’ll have no hot water. To check the upper element, you’ll need a multimeter capable of reading resistance.

• Turn the power OFF at the circuit breaker or remove fuses.

• Remove the upper access panel.

• Remove the insulation to access the upper thermostat and heating element.

3. Check the top two screws of the upper thermostat using a non-contact circuit tester and confirm that power is off

• With the electrical power off, remove the two power wires from the upper heating element.

Use a multimeter to check the resistance of the upper heating element.

4. Check the resistance of the upper heating element using a multimeter. Measure the resistance between the two screw terminals on the upper heating element. A good element will have a resistance ranging between 5 and 25 Ohms. If the resistance is:

  • Outside this range. Replace the element. On a new water heater, a burned-out upper heating element is almost always caused by turning the power on before the tank was full of water (Dry Fire).
  • Within this range. Reattach the power wires, making sure the wires are in good condition and the connections are clean and tight. Next, check the following:

5. Check/Reset Energy Cut Off (ECO) Button

The Energy Cut Off (ECO) shuts off power to the water heater’s elements if the temperature of the water in the tank gets too hot.

If the ECO has tripped, you’ll have no hot water. A tripped ECO can usually be reset, but you should have a qualified person investigate the cause of the overheating and repair the problem.

Do not turn the power back on until the cause of the overheating has been identified and repaired.

To check the Energy Cut Off (ECO):

1) Turn off the power to the water heater

2) Press the red ECO reset button (see photo above).

3) The ECO was tripped if you hear a click when it is reset.

In most cases, a tripped ECO indicates that the tank overheated due to a problem with one of the elements or thermostats have a qualified person check the upper and lower elements and thermostats and replace them if necessary.

4) The ECO was not tripped if you didn’t hear a click. In that case, the upper thermostat should be checked by a qualified person.

5) Replace the insulation and the upper access panel.

6) Turn off the power to the water heater

Cause2: Insufficient Hot Water or Slow Hot Water Recovery

If the hot water is simply not warm enough, there are several possible causes:

• Faulty Thermostatic Mixing Valve in a faucet or shower control (check other faucets in the house for hot water)

• One (or both) of the thermostats set too low

• Water heater’s capacity too small (or using too high)

 • Reversed plumbing connections or melted dip tube (usually found soon after new installation)

• Plumbing leak

 • Bad lower heating element (or lower thermostat)

• Low supply voltage


1. Thermostat  Mixing Valves. If the hot water is simply not warm enough, make sure the faucet you are checking doesn’t have a defective Thermostat Mixing Valve. Many shower controls now have built-in mixing valves.

If these devices fail, they can reduce the amount of hot water the shower or faucet delivers even though there is plenty of hot water in the tank.

Always check the water temperature at several faucets to make sure the problem is not in a faucet or shower control.

2. Thermostats are set too low. If the water temperature at several faucets is too cool, adjust the thermostat(s).

3. Undersized water heater. If your water heater runs out of hot water too quickly, it may be too small for your needs.

If the water heater is old, consider replacing it with a larger model. If the water heater is in good condition, you may be able to meet your family’s hot water needs with the existing water heater by installing Thermostat Mixing Valves at each point of use and then turning the thermostat(s) to a higher setting.

You can also reduce your home’s hot water needs by washing clothes in cold water, installing flow restrictors on showerheads, repairing leaky faucets.

4. Reversed connection or melted dip tube. Check the hot and cold connections and make sure your home’s hot water pipe is connected to the hot water outlet on the water heater. Usually, reversed connections are found soon after the installation of a new unit.

If copper pipes were soldered while they were attached to the water heater, the dip tube may have melted. The dip tube is a long plastic tube inside the tank attached to the cold water inlet.

If the dip tube has melted, it can be replaced by removing the cold water inlet connection, removing the old dip tube, and installing a new one.

5. Plumbing leak. Even a small leak in the hot water side of the home’s plumbing system can make it appear that the water heater is producing little to no hot water. Locate and repair the leak.

6. Lower heating element not working. If the lower heating element (or, more rarely, the lower thermostat) is not working, you will have some hot water but not as much as before. Because the lower element does most of the work, the lower element usually wears out before the upper element. Replace the lower element and/or thermostat if necessary

Cause3: Temperature Too High


1. Install or adjust the Thermostatic Mixing Valves for each point of use (see manufacturer’s instructions).

2. Adjust the thermostat(s) on the water heater.

A nonfunctioning thermostat or a shorted heating element can cause extremely hot water. If the Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve (T&P Valve) releases large amounts of very hot water, it is likely due to a shorted heating element, or more rarely a nonfunctioning thermostat or the thermostat does not fit snuggly against the tank.

Very high water temperatures can also cause the Energy Cut Off (ECO) to trip. Turn the power off until this problem is fixed.

Cause4: Low Water Pressure

Check both the cold and hot water at a sink to determine if the lower pressure is only on the hot waterside. If both hot and cold faucets have low pressure, call your local water utility. If the low pressure is only on the hot water side, the primary causes of this are:

1) Melted heat traps or dip tubes. Soldering copper pipes while they are connected to the water heater can melt the heat traps inside the hot and cold water connections or the dip tube (cold water side).

 Melted heat traps or a melted dip tube can restrict the flow of hot water. If that’s the case, replace the heat traps or dip tubes.

 2) Partially closed supply valve. Open the water heater’s supply valve fully.

Cause5: Drips from T&P Relief Valve Discharge Pipe

A small amount of water dripping from the Temperature and Pressure (T&P) Relief Valve usually means the home’s water pressure is too high or you need a properly sized and pressurized Thermal Expansion Tank.

A large amount of hot water coming from the T&P discharge pipe may be due to the tank overheating.

Read also:


1. Water pressure too high.  High water pressure can cause the T&P Relief Valve to drip. Install a Pressure Reducing Valve (PRV) on the main cold water supply line. Adjust the PRV to between 50 and 60 psi.

2. Thermal Expansion Tank.  Install a Thermal Expansion Tank. If a Thermal Expansion Tank is already installed and the T&P Relief Valve discharge pipe drips, the Thermal Expansion Tank may be pressurized to the wrong pressure or the internal bladder may be defective.

 Refer to the instructions that came with the Thermal Expansion Tank for more information.

3. Debris. In rare cases, debris can stick inside the T&P Relief Valve preventing the valve from seating fully. In that case, the T&P Relief Valve discharge pipe will drip. You may be able to clear debris from the T&P Relief Valve by manually operating the valve, allowing small quantities of water to flush out the debris. See the label on the T&P Relief Valve for instructions.

If the water pressure is between 50 and 60 psi, a Thermal Expansion Tank is installed and properly pressurized, and the valve has been cleared of any debris, and it still drips, the valve may be broken—have a qualified person replace the T&P relief valve.

4. Water Odor

Harmless bacteria normally present in tap water can multiply in water heaters and give off a “rotten egg” smell.

Although eliminating the bacteria that causes “smelly water” with Chlorine on the system is the only sure treatment, in some cases, the standard anode rod that came with your water heater can be replaced with a special zinc anode rod which may help reduce or eliminate the odor.

After you read the instructions above you might now know why is the water heater leaking?


My Name is Elhoucine I am a passionate blogger, I have been searching and reading about the newly released gadgets, appliances, and products, and through this blog, I am trying to share some of the acquired experience to help you with everything related to home.