The Factors of a Water Heater Tank Explosion

When it comes to having to undertake servicing on ones water heater, it is a reasonably low maintenance home appliance. However, one significant component of it really should be checked out routinely. Hot Water Heater Repair Richmond VA wants to pass along this safety information about ones water heater today.

High temperature when joined with tank deterioration within the storage tank could cause an explosion. Any time the water temperature is below 212 degrees Fahrenheit, one shall be protected from an explosion, though there is a danger of scalding at that temperature. But, if the water temperature is above 212 degrees, water turns into steam, which will then enlarge to 1,700 times the space it occupies as water. This is the time an explosion can occur.

Cautionary Signals of a Water Heater Explosion

The leading sign is if one goes to get hot water from a faucet and only steam comes out. Quickly shut off electric power if one owns an electric water heater. If one owns a gas hot water heater, shut off the gas valve on the water heater. Then, give us a call to come evaluate the predicament.

Minimizing Potential Water Heater Dangers

The most essential maintenance endeavor having a water heater is to check the pressure relief valve, often known as the T&P valve, on a usual schedule. This valve helps manage the pressure accumulation within the water storage tank to avert a unsafe rise in temperature and overpressure.


Be aware, the water release with a T&P valve can be really hot. If you do not feel safe evaluating the valve let us know. Also, carrying out any kind of repairs to the valve really should be executed by a experienced plumbing repair company.

How to Test the T&P Valve

Clear the area close to the overflow pipe and floor drain.

Lift the test handle for roughly 5 seconds or until the water runs clean.

Let go of the handle.

If the T&P valve continues to run with water, raise the handle up and down quickly to get it to reseat itself. One may have to do so a several times. IF it has not been tested for a while, it might be difficult to raise it at first. Avoid using an excessive amount of force, although might need to make use of a little.

If the T&P valve continues to have water coming out, it should really be changed.

Some other things to look for are deterioration on the stem of the valve. If there is any water leaking from the valve stem or out of the drain valve.

Looking for far more hints? Look at our other articles here:

Water Heater Maintenance Infographic

Richmond VA 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 Richmond VA

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