LESLIE: Mike in Rhode Island is dealing with a leaky pressure valve. What’s going on? Tell us about the problem.
Leaking Pressure Valve
MIKE: Well, on the hot water tank …
MIKE: … there’s a pressure release valve with the long pipe. I guess that’s (inaudible at 0:16:32.3).
TOM: (overlapping voices) Yeah. Mm-hmm. That’s right.
MIKE: And they – the oil guy did replace it twice.
MIKE: But it still leaks; mostly when we take like a shower – after the shower.
TOM: OK. Did anybody check the pressure of the water tank? Because remember that the pressure relief valve, it’s technically known as a pressure and temperature valve. It’s supposed to go off when the pressure in the tank goes over 150 pounds. Now, if it’s leaking because it’s a defective valve, that’s one thing; but if it’s leaking because it’s relieving the pressure because the tank is now forming an excess amount of pressure, then in fact it’s doing its job. So I would first check the pressure in the tank to make sure the pressure relief valve is, in fact, relieving pressure so that you don’t have a tank that ruptures on you.
MIKE: OK. So I would tell him to check that?
TOM: Yeah, well, he certainly should be doing that. I wouldn’t just replace it without checking it. Now, it’s not unusual for those to leak and, in fact, you know, there’s like a test valve on the side of those things. But we always say never touch it because once you let a little water out, sometimes the valve seat never goes back quite the same and it leaks like from that point on.
But if you’ve replaced this a couple of times and it’s still leaking, my question would be why is it leaking? I doubt it’s a bad valve; it’s more likely you have an excess amount of pressure and something is not right with the system. So I would have him check that next, OK, Mike?
MIKE: OK. I’ll do that, great.
TOM: Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.