Does Your Hot Water Heater Have A Gas Leak?

26 July 2023
 Categories: , Blog


When someone mentions a leak from a hot water heater, they are usually referring to a water leak. But there is another type of leak that a hot water heater can develop — at least, if it is a gas hot water heater. Sometimes, you may get a gas leak. Since gas leaks can be dangerous, it's important to know the signs of a gas leak from your hot water tank and how to handle such a situation.

Signs of a Gas Leak

If your hot water tank develops a gas leak, the key sign will be an odor of rotten eggs. While natural gas itself does not have an odor, the gas company adds sulfur to the gas for this very reason: so gas leaks don't go unnoticed. 

When you have a gas leak, your water heater may also fail to get the water as hot as you would like. It will generally still get warm, but not totally hot. This is because not all of the gas is making its way to the burner, so the burner is not able to get hot enough to fully heat the water.

What To Do About a Gas Leak

If you suspect your hot water heater has a gas leak, turn off the gas valve associated with the unit. This will cause your hot water heater to turn off. Then, open a window or door to ventilate the space. Call your plumber. They will come out as soon as they can. If they cannot make it there promptly, they may have you call the gas company in the meantime.

The plumber will determine where the leak is coming from. If the leak is from a valve, they will usually replace that faulty valve. If the leak is coming from a gas pipe, they will generally replace that gas pipe. 

How to Prevent Future Gas Leaks

Once your hot water heater is repaired, take some steps to prevent additional gas leaks in the future. For one, never work on gas lines yourself. It's too easy to cause leaks by under or over-tightening the valve or connection. Second, always make sure you maintain your water heater by periodically draining a few gallons from the bottom of the tank. This removes sediment that can contribute to corrosion over time and will help prevent your gas connections from corroding.

A gas leak from your hot water tank is a serious matter. For more info about water heater repair, contact a local professional.