The Causes of a Water Heater Tank Explosion

When it comes to having to do maintenance on ones water heater, it is a rather minimal maintenance device. Even so, one necessary component of it really should be inspected regularly. Hot Water Heater Repair Cleveland Ohio wishes to pass along this safety information concerning ones water heater today.

Excessive temperature when combined with tank deterioration within the storage tank can lead to an explosion. If the water temperature is under 212 degrees Fahrenheit, one will be protected from an explosion, though there is a danger of scalding at that temperature. But, if the water temperature is more than 212 degrees, water changes into steam, which will enlarge to 1,700 times the space it takes up as water. This is when an explosion can take place.

Cautionary Indicators of a Water Heater Explosion

The leading sign is if one goes to get hot water from a faucet and only steam comes out. Immediately shut off electric power if one has an electric water heater. If one owns a gas hot water heater, shut off the gas valve going to the water heater. After that, get in touch with us to come check out the condition.

Minimizing Potential Water Heater Dangers

The most crucial routine maintenance job having a water heater is to test the pressure relief valve, also referred to as the T&P valve, on a standard schedule. This valve helps control the pressure buildup within the water storage tank to hinder a unsafe rise in temperature and overpressure.


Remember, the water release from a T&P valve might be quite hot. If you do not feel comfortable evaluating the valve let us know. Additionally, performing any kind of repairs to the valve should be done by a experienced plumbing repair provider.

How to Test the T&P Valve

Remove anything from around the area around the overflow pipe and floor drain.

Raise the test handle for about 5 seconds or until the water runs clear.

Let go of the handle.

If the T&P valve keeps on running with water, lift up the handle up and down quickly to get it to reseat itself. One may have to do so a handful of times. IF it has not been tested for a while, it might be difficult to raise it at first. Don’t use too much force, although might need to use just a little.

If the T&P valve continues to leak, it should really be replaced.

Other things to watch out for are deterioration on the stem of the valve. If there is any water dripping from the valve stem or from the drain valve.

Seeking more strategies? Take a look at our additional articles here:

Water Heater Maintenance Infographic

Cleveland OH Water Heater Maintenance

Related T&P Valve Testing Videos

Mythbusters did a test of the potential dangers of hot water heater explosions here:

Water Heater T&P Valve Repair Cleveland Ohio

What the Experts Say

  • The discharge from a T&P valve can be very hot. It is very important that all T&P valves be installed properly with a discharge line piped downward to an adequate drain to avoid property damage and to minimize possible human contact.
    Read more…

Watts Water Technologies

If the temperature in your heater remains high after you turn down the thermostat, the thermostat may be faulty. Consult a professional for repair. Read more…

Home Guides

Pressure relief valves sometime develop a drip when opened for the first time in years. Try opening and closing it a few times to see if it will seat itself. If you have a large leak or the drip doesn’t stop on its own in a day or two, the valve will need to be replaced.  Read more…

Today's Homeowner

Check out some of our other water heater tips in our blog