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Leaking from beneath

I have an A.O.Smith 50gal water heater with max psi of 150. This morning I found it leaking from the bottom somewhere inside. It was not very much, but enough that it needed to be vaccuumed up. All the water in the house is cold. I assume this unit is about 14 years old. How can I check to see if it needs to be replaced or just repaired?

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If it is leaking it must be replaced.

Posted on Apr 22, 2009

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1 Answer

Leaking drain faucet


turn off gas. turn off water. drain water heater by connecting garden hose to drain valve and place discharge end somewhere that that will safely handle the water.(sink, outside,floor drain). lift temp. relief valve to allow air into the tank so a vacuum doesn't prevent draining. carefully remove the leaking valve by using a pipe wrench. counterclockwise to loosen. there may be a little water left in the bottom of the tank, so be ready with a wet vac. buy a new valve at your local hardware store, along with a roll of teflon tape. wrap the teflon tape around the threads in a clockwise rotation. don't use more than three or four wraps. replace the valve by turning in a clockwise rotation. tighten till snug. don't overtighten! if it still leaks a bit at the threads, you can tighten a bit more.

Mar 09, 2014 | A.O. Smith BTH-199 BTH-199 100 Gallon...

1 Answer

Water was pouring out the top of my hot water tank and I would like to know can it be repaired at a affordable price or if it need to be replaced will it be affordable it is a Master Plumber Reliance 501...


Unit is probably rusted out:
http://waterheatertimer.org/Leaking-water-heater.html

Reliance is AO Smith. I recommend the AO Smith line-up of water heater brands as best because air intake screen is located on bottom of unit and can be cleaned by homeowner without removing combustion parts, and because AO Smith posts service manuals.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-install-gas-water-heater.html
http://hometips.me/Mar/WaterHeaterSerialNumberDecoder.pdf

Add a comment with more detail about leak.

Mar 18, 2013 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

I have a GE Profile Water Heater Model #SE40M12AA01.


I recommend safety changes to prevent ruptured water heater and assorted leaks.
135 degree hot water.
Maybe replace TP valve if it is dripping.
Drip pan under water heater with 3/4" drain line to outside.
Expansion tank on incoming cold water line to absorb pressure build-up, and prolong life of tank and plumbing.

Here's why:

1) Yes you can have scalding hot water.

2) I recommend 135 degrees since that will burn the evil right out of ya. And generally kill clothes washing bacteria.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-adjust-water-heater-temperature.html

3) 150 is dangerous and can seriously burn skin in 1.5 seconds. Not safe around children and elderly.

4) Temperature settings on electric water heater are approximate, since thermostats are calibrated approximately, and read temperature through tank wall.

5) Also if you want to increase amount of hot water for high-consumption household, then setting tank temperature upward is one solution since more cold water is mixed with hot, so amount of hot inside tank goes further.

6) High temperature can cause TP valve to release water.
TP valve is pressure-temperature safety valve. Do NOT cap off.
Rating should be 125 psi and 180 degrees ... but all things water heater are approximate, and TP valves need replacement now and then.
It is not recommended by water heater manufactures to use 150 psi TP valve when water heater came with 125 psi. Rating shows in small print on end of TP. New TP valves sold at local hardware. Let tank cool before installing new one.

7) Higher temperature and high pressure can rupture tank.
Pressure over 80 psi shortens life of water heaters and plumbing fixtures. Put BTG100 pressure gauge on water heater drain valve to check pressure.

8) You need a drip pan with 3/4" drain line to outdoors, or to drain vent line, to prevent flood caused by ruptured water heater.
Turn water heater off when going on vacation.
Inspect water heater each 6 months.
Drip pan available at local home center or hardware:
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html#drip

9) Heated water expands and puts pressure on tank and pipes.
Water does not compress... so when water gets hotter it expands against tank wall and against pipes.
Especially in closed system (check valve present) when system is without expansion tank.
Expansion tank is installed on incoming cold water line.
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html#expansion

Oct 31, 2012 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

Water leaking at bottom of water heater


If you have had the heater for awhile, the tank has started to leak and you will need to replace the heater

Oct 11, 2012 | Reliance & 50gal Electric Water Heater

1 Answer

G'day, model number 311170n0 is constantly leaking


If you are on city water and your inlet to your house has a back flow preventer this could be you problem.if so theres an expansion tank that can be installed on the cold water line,after you water warms up theres no room for expansion and the relief valve goes off at 150 psi

Jan 17, 2011 | Rheem Water Heaters

1 Answer

I have a Reliance 501 40 gallon water heater leaking warm water from the valve at the top of the unit. Steady leak. What should we do short term, and is there a part we can get to fix it?


i am not sure if you are talking about a shut off valve or the pressure relief valve. the relief valve should have a pipe from it going down the side of the water heater. if that is the leak the it can be replaced. there should be a little lever on top of it and some times by lifting it and letting a little water flow through, it will stop leaking.

Oct 19, 2010 | Reliance & 50gal Electric Water Heater

1 Answer

Water on flour of water heater


If your water tank is leaking, is it dripping from above or actually leaking thru the bottom?. Can you find the source? Feel around and try to find wet spots above and around it. If it's not leaking from the water pipes or T&P valve, it's your tank leaking. You'd be wise to have it checked out in the morning, before it gets worse. Hopefully your catch pan has a pipe attached to divert water to the outside or to a sump pump or floor drain. Water heaters do sweat, but you can tell the difference if it continues to leak for several hours.

May 17, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

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