The Hidden Energy Vampire: Hot Water Heater Leak The Hidden Energy Vampire: Hot Water Heater Leak

Telling if you have a hot water heater leak before the problem becomes too big will save you money that you would otherwise lose on wasted energy. It may also spare you a few cold showers. Probably the biggest factor in leaking hot water heaters is their age. They are durable but usually are not built to last more than a decade. If you suspect that your hot water heater is leaking, take care of the problem sooner rather than later. Read below to discover some telltale signs of a hot water heater leak and to learn more about replacing this appliance.

The Hidden Energy Vampire

When a hot water heater leaks, it sucks energy from two different sources rather than one. Not only does it waste water by either physically leaking it from the tank or by never heating it in the first place, but it also wastes whatever power source is used to heat it. Whether that source is natural gas or electricity, you lose money.

Signs of a Hot Water Heater Leak

You should first have an idea about a hot water heater’s age. If you know that your water heater is at least 8 years old, you have reason to be suspicious. If you electric hot water heater is 15 years old, you should start making phone calls to plumbing supply stores.


You will get the indication that the hot water heater is leaking first by noticing changes in the water that comes out of the faucets. Rust-colored water coming out of the hot water faucet is one sign. Other factors could cause this coloration, but combined with an aged water heater, this sign can tell you a lot.


If you begin to notice that the hot water is not as hot as it should be or as you are accustomed to, you have observed another sign.


Lastly, running out of hot water quicker than your home should or ending up in a cold shower can be two other indicators. 

Exterior Warning Signs

If you have started noticing signs while taking showers or simply running the hot water, go and look at the water heater itself. If you see water pooling up around its base or even a small drip coming from it, you should probably consider replacing it soon. 

Replacement Hot Water Heaters

If you can afford the switch, you might consider installing a solar hot water heater. Solar models do have some restrictions in terms of weather and position of your home, but they can reduce your usage of electricity or natural gas. A tankless water heater is another option, one with a longer life expectancy than conventional models. This type is also the least likely to leak because it does not store water for long periods. You may spend a little more now, but you will probably save money in the long run.

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!