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Old 06-11-2010, 05:22 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Damn! Question About Hot Water Heater Leaking In Basement!

All-

I just discovered that one of my hot water heaters was leaking from the top of the unit, and apparently has been for a few days as there's a decent amount of standing water on the concrete floor of my storage room where its located.

I've shut off the water supply to the heater at the valve above the unit on the feed pipe, and I also shut off the breaker to it so its turned off.

Is there anything else I should be worried about? I don't think I have any electrical cords/outlets/devices down there that are where the water is. I'm fearing a fire. The carpet outside the door leading into the room is soaked, but the floor under it is concrete as well, and I've got towels down there soaking it up.

Is there anything I'm not thinking of? Should I drain the unit? I won't be able to get anyone out here until Tuesday to repair/replace it, and I'm going to be bringing a ginormous fan home from work tomorrow to speed up the drying process.

Help me double check everything so I don't worry about my family's safety over the weekend...
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Old 06-11-2010, 06:11 PM
johnpost johnpost is offline
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shut the outlet valve.
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Old 06-11-2010, 06:25 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnpost View Post
shut the outlet valve.
I've shut off the water supply to the heater...is the outlet valve different? Maybe the outlet valve is the one I shut off. We aren't getting any hot water in the kitchen, upstairs half-bath or to the dishwasher and washing machine. Is there some other potential for leaking I'm overlooking?
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Old 06-11-2010, 07:02 PM
crazyjoe crazyjoe is offline
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My water heater has a red band around the outgoing hot water and a blue band around the incoming cold water. Ideally you would have shutoffs on both pipes, but if not the incoming water should suffice.

There should be a drain valve on the heater, toward the bottom. Hook a hose up to this and drain it off, that way if the heater fails in some spectacular fashion, you won't have 30 - 50 gallons more water to clean up (and probably a rusty mess of water as well...scale tends to build up in water pipes/heaters.

With the breakers off and the incoming supply turned off, your family should be safe.
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Old 06-11-2010, 07:07 PM
johnpost johnpost is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnpost View Post
shut the outlet valve.
Quote:
Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
I've shut off the water supply to the heater...is the outlet valve different? Maybe the outlet valve is the one I shut off. We aren't getting any hot water in the kitchen, upstairs half-bath or to the dishwasher and washing machine. Is there some other potential for leaking I'm overlooking?
closing either would prevent hot water down stream.

depends on where it is leaking. my thought was that your hot water pipes could drain back whatever their volume and leak.

the biggest issue in the inlet which should be valved at the heater. you can follow the inlet pipe back to the cold water coming into your house and the outlet pipe towards a bathroom or kitchen location.
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Old 06-11-2010, 08:52 PM
Snnipe 70E Snnipe 70E is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnpost View Post
shut the outlet valve.
Very few water heaters have an outlet valve. Draining it would not be a bad idea.
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:08 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
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Thanks guys. It appears that the leak is stopped as the floor is drying up (thank gods for my storage room exhaust fan) and I will direct a HUGE fan onto the standing water tomorrow, in addition to mopping it up.
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