A pressure relief valve is a valuable safety device for controlling the level of pressure in an enclosed system. Pressure might otherwise build up and create problems, such as a burst tank or pipe, equipment failure or flooding. If not handled correctly, excess pressure can lead to accidents with severe consequences. However, there are ways you can prevent this scenario.
One of the most critical parts of any pressure vessel or system is the relief valve. These valves are designed and set at predetermined pressures to protect against exceeding safety limits when the device is in use.
Where the Hot Water Heater Pressure Relief Valve is Located
The location of the T&P (temperature and pressure) valve is usually on the side of your water heater or on the top. It’s connected to a pipe running down the length of the unit, and it should be closed off by another fitting called an elbow cock. The flat lever-like component doesn’t have any teeth, and one end is more expansive than the other. The lever will raise or lower depending upon how much pressure there currently is inside the tank. If this valve is functioning properly, it will automatically open when the internal pressure reaches 150 psi and the internal temperature reaches 210 degrees Fahrenheit.
To avoid a flooded home, we recommend that you test your hot water heater pressure relief valve at least once every year. Now that you’ve located the T&P valve on your unit, we’ll show you how to test it with ease.
Choosing the Right Pressure Relief Valve for Your Hot Water Heater
Installing the correct pressure relief valve on a water heater is crucial. This applies not just to new devices but also to replacing the relief valve on an older unit. The correct pressure rating is essential when installing a valve. It should also be matched up according to its relieving capacity This is common knowledge to professionals, but unfortunately, this factor often gets overlooked by those who aren’t trained. The code of construction can be a critical factor in choosing the correct valve capacity. However, those code requirements are unknown to most people. For these reasons and others, installing or repairing a T&P valve is best left to a professional plumber. The team from Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing would be happy to provide you with any assistance you need.
The T&P Relief Valve is an essential component of any water heater or hot-water storage vessel. These valves are designed to protect against excessive temperature and pressure without sacrificing performance in either area. A relief valve’s functionality depends on its rated capacity, which can vary significantly from one type to another.
Some people mistakenly believe that adding a T&P relief valve will only provide greater protection for the plumbing system. However, in many cases, they serve dual purposes as both temperature and pressure regulating valves, so it’s important to have both types installed when renovating or building out new hot water lines. The code requires them.
When the water in your tank becomes too hot, it will cause a valve disk and seat to push apart. That’s when you can hear sounds like popping or hissing as steam shoots from discharge vents near the area. This is where heat buildup is on its way out toward cooler voids where there isn’t much pressure. The vessel then fills again with cold water, which lowers its temperature. When the temperature drops back down below 210°, the valve seats itself once more.
How to Test Your Hot Water Heater Pressure Relief Valve
We cannot stress enough the importance of keeping up with proper maintenance. Ensuring the T&P valve operates properly is the most important test you can do. A faulty valve could cause an unsafe situation in a home or business. If the pressure release valve doesn’t work as designed, you’re risking possible injury from air pressure building up inside the tank with no release point.
A water test is an integral part of maintaining your system. The process involves connecting a pipe to the T&P valve and lifting the lever to listen for any water discharging. Doing so will indicate if it’s working correctly or not.
Natural mineral deposits can form in a closed position, which may cause the water valve to become clogged. If you notice that your T&P valve isn’t discharging or closing correctly, contact Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing as soon as possible for help eliminating any blockages.
When you hear the sound of hot water running through the pipes, the source of the noise is probably a leaky T&P valve. It means one of two things. Either there’s an issue with that specific valve, or perhaps your thermostat is faulty.
The next time your plumbing is acting up, get to work on finding out what’s causing the leak. First, check for water building up around the tank. Next, touch the line to see if it feels warm at any point along its length. If it does, the hot water heater is leaking. If you notice a leaky pressure relief valve, let our plumbing staff know. We’ll replace it for you so you can have safety and peace of mind in your home.
How to Replace a Pressure Relief Valve
So, you want to change your pressure relief valve? We don’t actually recommend this as a DIY project, but we’ll explain how it’s done. Before changing out any parts on a hot water heater, make sure the power is turned off. This includes both electricity and gas supply.
Next, you want to drain five to ten gallons from the tank. The goal is to get the water level below the valve you’re replacing. The water will be hot, so remember to be careful. Once the water drains, use a pipe wrench to unscrew the pressure relief valve.
Before putting the new valve in, coat the threads with plumbers’ pipe dope. Use your pipe wrench to screw the new pressure relief valve on, and reattach your pipe. Open and close the valve a few times to ensure it is free of debris. Finally, close your drain off. The next step is to fill your water heater back up with water and start it up again.
Professional Expertise You Can Rely on
Bardi Heating, Cooling & Plumbing has been providing expert solutions for residential customers in Norcross and the Greater Atlanta area since 1989. We are a family-owned and -operated company with core values of honesty, outstanding workmanship and respect for each client’s needs. Those attributes are instilled in our crew and displayed on every assignment we accept. Whether you require heating or cooling installation, maintenance or repair or one of our plumbing services, you can expect skill and efficiency from everyone on our team. We handle water heaters, water treatment, leak detection, pipe replacement and all sorts of plumbing repairs.
The Customer Satisfaction Guarantee that we offer is unique and unprecedented in the HVAC and plumbing industries. As a result, we’re happy to say that we’ve been honored with the BBB Torch Award for outstanding customer service. In addition, our professionals are here for you 24/7 for any emergency repair, regardless of how complex your problem may be. If you are looking for a plumber, give us a call today. We’ll take care of all your needs!