How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Charles Your Own Question
Charles, Engineering Contractor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 2066
Experience:  20+ years in most phases of construction
Type Your Plumbing Question Here...
Charles is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I work for an apartment complex. For each of our water heaters,

This answer was rated:

I work for an apartment complex. For each of our water heaters, we have a drain line that connects to the T/P valve. This particular drain line is connected to main line.

This drain line for the water heaters is leaking under concrete. We were told that it was very hard to detect where the breakage is located since it's not under pressure. So replacing the broken pipe is not an option for us. Also, it could just break again. We would like to disconnect the T/P valves from each water heater.

I wanted to please ask the following:

-Most homes etc. and some other businesses do not even have this separate drain line for the water heaters. Our only concern is if the T/P valves leaks. If the T/P valve leaks and we can't send someone out right that moment, will turning off the circuit breaker stop the valve from leaking (maybe somewhat)?

-What can be done to stop the leaking from the T/P valve until someone gets there to replace it?

- How do these valves typically leak? I head that it typically only leaks a few drops until then it starts to really flow. Is that true?

-One other issue we had with this drain line for water heaters- if the T/P valve leaks, we don't know about the issue until the tennants electric bill is high. This creates a big issue for us as the tenants want us to pay- but no one knew about the issue. What do you suggest about this concern.

Charles : Hello, and thanks for your question!!
Charles : The t/p valve is a pressure activated device designed to keep the water heater from exploding if the temp got to the point that the tank would fail
Charles : The only thing that would stop the valve from leak inning would be to shut off the water flow to the heater
Charles : turningheater turning off the electricity to the water heater will only stop it from heating the water.
Charles : sorry, my keyboard jammed up, lol
Charles : the best thing you could do would be to make sure you have a shut off valve located at the cold water intake of the heater so it can be shut off without the need to shut off all the water to the unit

Thanks for your reply. What if the tennant is on vacation and the water heater leaks. How are we going to find out other than seeing the water? Is there any devices you'd recommend for finding the leaking water heaters remotely before the tennants do?


Also, do these valves typically leak a little bit before they leak a lot?

Customer: this page lists ones for $120. I can't afford this for every apartment. Are there any less expensive ones you know of? I think that the cut off valve just needs to connect to the shut off if water is detected.

Charles : That is about the best price I have seen on the market. These are an item that you really want o function right so I wouldn't go out and buy the cheapest one you can find. You will just end up throwing good money after bad. If the detector doesn't work then you have spent the money on the detector and still have the detection problem
Charles, Engineering Contractor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 2066
Experience: 20+ years in most phases of construction
Charles and other Plumbing Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • You did one super job of explaining to me everything there is to know about this fridge. I'm looking forward to asking you questions in the future. Jimmy Bagley, IA
< Previous | Next >
  • You did one super job of explaining to me everything there is to know about this fridge. I'm looking forward to asking you questions in the future. Jimmy Bagley, IA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland

Meet The Experts:

  • Marc



    Satisfied Customers:

    Plumbing heating & home maintenance contractor
< Last | Next >
  • Marc's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Plumbing heating & home maintenance contractor
  • Jerry's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    over 20 years residential plumbing experience.
  • Theplumber717's Avatar


    Plumber, Hvac Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    Lic Plumbing contractor, 28/yrs res,com,repair,Universal HVAC Tech
  • Mario's Avatar


    Master Plumber

    Satisfied Customers:

    Master Plumber, Fire Sprinkler, and Jobbing Spec.
  • Bud's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    22 Years Field Experience - 17 Years Business Ownership - Residential or Light Commercial
  • Phil's Avatar


    Mechanical Engineer.

    Satisfied Customers:

    Retired mech. contractor, shop owner, 51 yrs experience.
  • Rick Mather's Avatar

    Rick Mather

    Building Inspector

    Satisfied Customers:

    Assistant Building Official, HVAC Tech