Overflowing Hot Water Cylinders

A leaking hot water cylinder or hot water system is something you should repair swiftly for your safety. Generally, you only realize something is wrong when there is not enough hot water or worse, no hot water at all. KD Plumbing recommend you act as soon as you realise your hot water system is leaking this is because what starts as a small simple problem could quickly turn into a much bigger one.

A leak could indicate that your hot water service is corroding and once this has begun it will only get worse as time goes on. Some areas of Auckland have hard water which often leads to cylinder corrosion and while many hot water systems last longer than their warranty of five to seven years, the average lifespan is around 10 to 12 years.

You can usually find the age of your hot water system by looking for a manufacturer’s badge plate on the cylinder or unit and record the manufacturing date on it.

Follow these useful steps when you have a hot water leak.

Identify the leak

Before you call plumber in Auckland, you should first check the source of the leak. Is it at the top or bottom of your hot water cylinder? Or is it leaking from the pressure relief valve (PRV) or pressure and temperature relief valve (PTRV)?

If you determine it’s the PRV or PTRV, then your problem might not be so serious. It’s normal for these valves to leak small amounts of water occasionally, but not all the time and not a consistent flow.

Find the PTRV valve on the side of the cylinder near the top or bottom, then lift the silver lever three or four times to open, close and clear any blockages. If the water flow comes to a stop then your problem is solved. But if it keeps running then you probably need to replace the valve. This repair will prolong the life of your entire system and stop water wastage so it’s well worth doing.

If the leak is coming from the top or bottom of your electric or solar hot water system, you need to turn off the power to it at your switch board. This is important because electricity and water is potentially very dangerous.

The hot water system should have its own labelled fuse or circuit breaker, so you should still be able to run other appliances and lights in your home. You don’t want to run the heating element when the cylinder is nearly empty as it will burn out.

Hot water leak KD Plumbing

Our fully qualified plumbers and gasfitters can tackle any repairs or install a new hot water unit to give you access to reliable hot water.

Turn off the water

The next step you need take is to turn off the water on the inlet pipe to the unit. This is applicable for electric, solar and gas hot water services.

Look for a small black, blue or red tape or lever isolation valve on the pipe leading into the bottom of the unit. Turn this clockwise all the way to shut off the water. If you can’t locate the inlet tap, or it is seized up then turn off the water supply at the mains water meter on your property boundary. Befoe you do this we recommend you fill the kettle or a jug with water for drinking and have one or two buckets of water filled so you can flush the toilet.

If you are having issues with your gas hot water system, you will need to turn off the gas inlet. Look for another yellow or copper pipe (gas) running into the system and turn it off at that tap or lever isolation valve. You will also need to isolate the water supply which will be next to it depending on the unit.

Call the experts

Once you’ve followed the above steps to shut down your hot water system, it’s time to call KD Plumbing.

Because our North Shore team are fully qualified plumbers and gasfitters, we are able to handle any repairs or installations from start to finish, including gas pipe work.

We can supply and install a new hot water system identical or similar to your old one, or change over and upgrade to a unit better suited to your current family size. We can also take the old unit away. Our goal is to make everything as easy, convenient and efficient as possible for you.