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Anonymous asked in Home & GardenMaintenance & Repairs · 2 months ago

Hot water heater going out?

The guy I want to do the work is not available for a week. Mine is 10 years old. Leaking rust colored water from around the doors where you replace the heating elements. I have turned off the cold water intake and that seems to have slowed the leak a little. I have not turned the power off.

My plan is to use it for a few showers over the next week by turning the cold water knob on and then off again after the shower.

I also want to buy a lowes or home depot coupon to save on the water heater.

Anyone see a problem with my plan as long as I contain the leak?


I considered turning the power off to it, but I was concerned that might cause it to mess up sooner or leak faster or something.

Update 2:

And I doubt the water will drop below the top element. But, I am not exactly sure how much water I use for a shower. I do know it takes a while to get hot...because it goes upstairs thru the attic to my bathroom. 

3 Answers

  • 2 months ago

    any time you have water leaking near the electrical, you NEED to turn either the water or power OFF.  [it's cheaper to turn the power off -- why heat what you can't use?]  Water heaters do not have GFCI circuits and the risk of accidental serious electric shock becomes high.  As to the replacement -- any experienced handyman can do this job, or even DIY [with a neighbor's help in moving the tanks].  My 40 gallon electric replacement a couple of years back cost me under $500 total -- tank, new flex hoses, drip pan and all.  -- grampa

  • T C
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Two things ....First you will need to turn on the cold in order to take a shower ... You need water pressure that is provided by supply (cold)

    Also...By leaving power on, and no water supply ...(depending on how great the leak is) your top element could burn out if the water level drops below the element. Elements need water to transfer the heat to.

    I realize you are getting a new water heater it doesn't matter but why waster the electricity. Shut off the electrical ........turn it on 2 hours before you shower. 

  • 2 months ago

    It is not only going is dead.  Replace it ASAP.  I doubt it will even heat up water.

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