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Opossum 07-29-2012 02:23 PM

New water heater still leaks
Hello. I'm a new contributor to the forum, though I've gotten good advice from previous postings.
I'm having a recurring problem with discharge from my water heater's pressure relief valve. After our water company installed a new meter about 6 weeks ago, we developed our first PRV leak. Our water heater was 12+ years old, so we decided to have it replaced. (We've since learned from other postings that this might have been unnecessary.) We had a new water heater installed by a plumber. Within a day or two, the new PRV was also leaking. The plumber installed an expansion tank about a month ago. That seemed to solve the problem until a few days ago when the PRV started leaking again. So we have a new gas hot water heater (with its new pressure relief valve), a new expansion tank and we still have a leak.
My husband thinks the expansion tank might be full and we're right back to where we started. Do these things fail very often? It seems like a pretty simple device. The plumber says the PRV might be faulty and he suggested that we replace it with a "stronger" valve. I'm not sure that's a good idea, especially if the expansion tank has failed.
I appreciate any thoughts.

Opossum 07-29-2012 02:29 PM

New Water Heater Still Leaks
Sorry..that thread title should have been New WATER HEATER still leaks.
New at this. :o

JoeD 07-31-2012 12:42 PM

I would be looking at the expansion tank. If it is waterlogged that would be your problem. If you want to confirm this get yourself a pressure gauge and install it on the system to monitor the pressure. I think you will find the pressure rising when you have the leak.

CallMeVilla 07-31-2012 06:28 PM

Have you checked the water pressure with a meter? The usual purpose of the PRV is a fail-safe in case the heater gets too hot. However, I can imagine a situation where the main pressure is so high it trips the system too.

Meters are cheap ($10-$15) and you just attach them to your hose bib (faucet) above the house's water pressure control valve. Turn on the water and assess the pressure. If it is too high, turn the control bolt COUNTER CLOCKWISE to reduce the pressure. Just watch the meter and you will see the pressure drop to where you need it.

Best of luck.

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