Emergency leaking water heater
Turn off power: Do not touch wet water heater
Turn off water... open bathtub spout
Automatic shut off valve at Amazon
Battery-operated water alarm
is a self-help site
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Compare 16 electric and 3 gas water heater timers Troubleshoot Rheem tankless Figure correct wire and breaker 9 ways to save with water heater
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T100 series timersProgrammable wall timersAuto-off timersBox timersHow to set timers
Troubleshoot electric water heater Troubleshoot gas water heater How to wire tankless electric How to wire subpanel Do-it-yourself

Emergency steps for leaking water heater

water heater shut off 

1) Shut off water

Rotate valve clockwise
Use channel locks

Shut off water using shut-off located on cold water pipe above tank.
Or turn off main water shut-off to house
Also read: Diagnose leaking water heater
Rotate clockwise
Use channel locks if valve is stuck
water key

2) Shut off water to house/ if water heater does not have shut off valve shown above

Rotate shut off 1/4 turn so valve is perpendicular across water line
Image shows water key.
Located water meter box, remove lid, dig away dirt to find shut off
Shut off located on house side of meter
Repair water heater valve

Water key
Buy water key at Amazon
Water keys at Amazon
repair water heater

3) Relieve pressure on tank

Open tub spout on hot side for a few moments.
If you relieve pressure by lifting lever on TP valve, then stand away from scalding water that is released under pressure from overflow tube

If water does not shut off, then shut off main water to house, or call plumber.

4) If leak continues: Turn off electic or gas and Drain water heater

Use garden hose.
Open drain valve counter clockwise

Put hose on drain valve located on side of tank near bottom.
Open drain valve and check that water is flowing out of hose.
What to do if water heater will not drain
circuit breaker

5) How to turn off electric heater

If tank continues leaking after shutting off water to water heater and opening tub spout to release pressure, then turn off electric water heater and drain tank
Do not touch wet water heater
Find circuit breaker for water heater, and push breaker fully OFF
If leak is small, then turn electric heater ON for short while to make batches of hot water until new heater can be installed.

Do Not Touch Electric Water Heater that is wet
How to test if electricity is off
How to replace circuit breaker
Turn gas control OFF

6) How to turn off gas heater

If gas water heater is leaking, then choose either a) or b)
a) Small water leak that has stopped with steps shown above: rotate knob to Pilot so pilot stays lit but burner will not ignite, illustrated on left. Then when you need a bit of hot water, rotate knob again so burner will ignite. Do this until heater can be replaced.

b) Large water leak, or tank continues leaking after tub spout is open: turn off gas to heater, illustrated on right
Move gas valve handle so it is perpendicular across gas line, illustrated on right
Identify gas control valve + How to light gas water heater
Error codes, and replacement of gas control valves
7) Identify what is leaking/ Read below
also open resource link

Troubleshoot leaking water heater

Brass hose cap

Garden hose cap

Drain valve leaking?

Buy garden hose cap with washer at hardware or home center.
Ace hardware shows brass cap online, most local home centers sell plastic cap.
Check Amazon for brass hose cap. Requires rubber washer.
Rubber washer will seal tank.

Buy hose cap
Brass hose cap at Amazon
2-pack brass hose cap Amazon

How replace drain valve
Water heater drain cap

TP valve leaking?  Do NOT cap off TP valve.

Do not cap off TP valve or cover TP with insulation or block TP valve or block overflow tube.
Lift valve and gently lower into place
If leak will not stop, then tank may be overheating (check if water temp is very high), or TP valve needs replacement

How to troubleshoot and replace TP valve.
Causes for TP leak

Small leak

You can limp by on leaking water heater if leak is small and you turn on heater a few times a day to heat water.
 Leaving water inside tank will let you to make some hot water each day until water heater can be replaced.
This strategy can work 1-3 months.
Avoid damage to pipes: Do not turn on water heater unless tank is completely full of water and hot side of tub is running full stream.

Gas heater makes 41 gallons hot water per hour. Electric 21 gallons per hour.
Shower uses 9 gallons hot water, bath uses 15 gallons hot water.
If leak is small, turn heater on for short periods until heater can be replaced or repaired.
Water heater leaking

Water bubbling up, or leaking out of side or bottom, then tank is rusted

Replace water heater
Which is best gas water heater
How to install gas water heater
How to install electric water heater
Rusted water heater

Replace Rusted tank

Rusted tanks that are welded to seal leak are subject to rupture and are risky.
New water heater is a few hundred dollars. Massive damage to home is more expensive.

Troubleshoot leaking water heater
How to install gas water heater

More resources

Automatic water heater shut off valve
Automatic shut off valve

Prevent water damage:

Buy automatic shut off valve:
Automatic water heater shut off valve/ electric powered
Battery-operated water alarm
How to drain tankless

Drain Tankless

Resource: How to drain tankless
How to drain tankless/ pdf
Flooded water heater
Larger image

Flooded water heater should be replaced

Flooded water heater

Read PDF on flood-damaged water heaters
Read article on flooded water heaters
Rusty water

Hot water is rusty: is not emergency unless tank is leaking:

a) Rusty water indicates rusted water heater.
b) Inspect tank for leaks.
Inspect water heater for leak
c) Replace anode rod and rusting will stop. New anode rod will not repair rusted tank, but will stop rust.
Check and replace water heater anode rod

If tank hull is rusted and ready to rupture, it is time to shop for a new heater before rupture causes massive damage.

Automatic water shut off

Water detectors at Amazon
Floodstop water heater shut-off at Amazon
Drip pan
Drip pan saves damage

Drip pan with 3/4" drain line/ Alway install water heater drip pan

Set water heater in drip pan
Water heater drip pans at Amazon
Water detectors at Amazon
Auto-shut-off valve at Amazon

See drip pan installation
Read about drip pan
connect water heater to generator

Connect Water heater to any voltage generator

Connect water heater to any voltage generator
Convert water heater to 120Volt
Off-peak water heater ideas
Convert water heater from AC to DC

Call homeower insurance company

Insurance failure rate of water heater
Install gas water heater

Replace and troubleshoot water heater

How to install gas water heater
How to install under-counter water heater

Do it yourself water heater
Replace anode rod

Troubleshoot gas water heater
Troubleshoot electric water heater
How to install gas water heater
Troubleshoot leaking water heater

Additional links

Electricity from pole to breaker box

See basic 120V and 240V water heater circuits

Compare all water heater timers
Do it yourself
Do it yourself water heater

How to twist wire

How to wire off-peak water heater
Cutler Hammer C25BUB230A
Recirculation system
Hot water circulation system
Solar water heater
9+ ways to save with water heater

Motorized shut off valve

Anode rods

Clean sediment from tank
Troubleshoot Rheem tankless

Troubleshoot Bosch tankless
Intermatic parts
Intermatic trippers and parts

How to replace circuit breaker

Pro - n- con tankless water heater

9 ways to save with water heater

How to install gas water heater

Water heater timers

Troubleshoot electric water heater

Low pressure on Hot side of faucet

Cost to run water heater

Wire T1906 and T1905 timers
Wire T-101 T103 T104 timers
Wire EH40 and WH40 timers
Tork timers and manuals
Tork TU universal timer
Paragon timers and manuals
Tork TU universal timer
Gas and electric water heaters Support the economy:
Buy water heaters  from my associate links:

50 gallon Gas water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon gas water heaters at Amazon
50 gallon Electric water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon electric water heaters at Amazon
Hybrid / heat pump/ water heaters at Amazon

How to install gas water heater
Troubleshoot gas water heater
Troubleshoot electric water heater
Intermatic control centers Intermatic control centers:
+ manuals and parts

Including Z-wave
box timers Compare box timers

Control with Z-wave
programmable timer Compare programmable timers

Control water heater with programmable wall timer
Countdown timers Compare countdown timers

Control water heater with countdown timer
Compare power packs

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