When the water heater starts leaking, what's a geek to do? That's right! Learn everything he can about water heaters and fix it himself!
Yes, my water heater broke. I called around, and the cheapest model is about $200.00. They can be much, much, more expensive than that. And the minumum installation fee? About $250.00. Ouch! So I did a bit of research, and discovered that the part that's leaking is called a TPR (Temperature & Pressure Release) valve. They're *supposed* to be checked once or twice a year. I've lived here for 8 years, and never knew to check it once. I also discovered that they can go bad and start leaking after 4 or 5 years. The previous owners probably never knew to check it either, so I'm guessing that the thing is close to 15 years old. It would probably be close to the end of the water heater itself, but I've already had the element and thermostat replaced on it. So long as the tank itself doesn't spring a leak, I should be good for awhile.
The problem I'm having is that I cannot seem to get the old valve off. It's a simple screw-on part, but 15 years is a long time to be stuck in something without ever being unscrewed. Anyone out there have any suggestions?