What a mess! What are we going to do!
Have you ever said something like that? If you have experienced a leaky hot water tank… you probably have.
When it happened, hopefully it was in an unfinished basement and not in an area of the house that suffered severe damage.
Leaks can happen anytime there is contained water, in any pipe, hose, or appliance. For hot water heaters, you add the element of pressure and heat. A leak can quickly turn into a spray of water, and a bad flood.
To add insult to injury, when you discover a hot water tank is leaking or flooding your home and you turn off the water, chances are those remaining 50, 60, 70, 80 or more gallons are still going to come out to haunt you. Some water tanks are big. Good for multiple occupants in your home… bad for flooding.
Adding insult to injury, when your hot water tank fails, you not only have to clean up the mess, but now you don’t have… hot water. It’s a cold shower for everyone until you get it fixed.
Of course, if a leaking hot water tank ruins your day, it’s time to bring in the water damage professionals. But there are some steps you can take so this never (hopefully!) happens to you.
An aging issue
Like any appliance, the older it gets, the more likely it may have issues. Some experts say a tank should last between 8-12 years. How long have you had your tank? If much longer than that, you may be living on borrowed time! Replacement may be necessary.
You can keep an eye on things yourself. Once a month, look over your hot water tank, inspecting for evidence of water seepage. Often, this comes from underneath the tank. If any moisture is noticeable, call a plumber and get it fixed ASAP.
An annual inspection by a plumbing company is a good idea as well. These visits are not that expensive and can really save you in the long run.
Flush away troubles
When you don’t see it, you don’t think about it. But inside your water tank, sediment and residues are building up. These can cause all kinds of issues. You can flush out your tank by (after reducing the temperature, of course) attaching a garden hose to the connection at the bottom of the tank and removing all the gunk and goo down there. It will have to drain somewhere, which could be a challenge. Of course, if you don’t want to mess with this, have your plumber do it for you.
When the unthinkable happens, though, and you are facing inches (hopefully not feet!) of water to clean up, and damaged belongings in your home as well, it’s time to call your water damage experts. After all, it pays to call a pro!