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How to Replace a Relief Valve on a Hot Water Heater

Learn how to replace a relief valve in a hot water heater from Winters Plumbing & Heating in this Howcast video.

Transcript

I get asked, "The little valve on the side of the water heater. It leaks or it drips."

And people say, "Can I replace it on my own?"

The answer is actually no, you can't, because number one: Why is it leaking? Number two: You have to be able to shut that thing off and replace the valve. It's simply just unscrewing something and screwing something back in, but there's a reason why it leaks. And the reason why is going to be one of two thing.

The temperature in the tank is too high, and if the temperature in the tank is too high, it's going to leak. If it's too high, people are going to get burned. So it's not a job I'd recommend doing on your own.

Electric water heaters and gas water heaters have a couple things in common. One of which is the little valve on the side that lets water out, if it's too hot or if there's too much pressure. So in both cases, too much pressure can be developed because of too hot a water temperature. So is it still a job you could do on an electric water heater? The answer is no. And the reason is that you have to understand why that thing is leaking. And if the water's too hot, people are going to get scalded. And that's never going to be any good for anyone's family.

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