The job of your water heater is to heat up and store water; it should not be leaking water on your floor. If your water heater is leaking water on your floor, you need to figure out why it is leaking water and fix the leak right away. A leaky water heater can lead to water damage in the area where your water heater is located, giving you an even bigger mess to clean up. Here are four reasons you heater might be leaking water.
Reason #1: Faulty Temperature & Pressure Relief Valve
Your water heater has a temperature and pressure (T&P) relief value on it, the purpose of which is to release excess pressure from the tank and to help cool the tank off. This is an emergency valve that can sometimes leak.
You can check and see if the T&P valve is the cause by putting a bucket under the pipe opening connected to the valve, then opening the valve up and allowing everything to be flushed out the valve. If the T&P valve is the source of the leak, this should stop the leak. If you notice water continuing to leak from this valve, you will need to change it out.
Reason #2: Reduce the Thermostat Setting
If your temperature and pressure relief valve released a lot of pressure and debris, you may have your water heater set at a temperature that is too hot. Try to lower the thermostat on your water heater and see if this helps stop the leak.
Reason #3: Loose Pipe Connections
Next, you may just have some pipe connections that are loose. A loose pipe can easily lead to some leaking water. This is a really easy problem to fix. All you need to do is take a wrench and use it to tighten up all the connections to prevent water from leaking out. Just make sure you are not overzealous and don't tighten the pipes too much; that could be harmful as well.
Reason #4: Rusty Storage Tank
Finally, if your storage tank has developed visible rust on the outside of the tank, then there is more than likely rust on the inside of the tank. Rust will break down the strength of the storage tank and will lead to leaking water. If the storage tank is rusted out, unfortunately, you'll need to replace your water heater.
If you notice water on the ground near your water heater, you need to take steps right away to figure out where the water is coming from and stop the leak. Or you can hire a water heater repair contractor to fix your leaking water heater for you.