How Likely Is It For a Water Heater to Explode

10 / 02 / 2020

An actual explosion is unlikely. But it’s still possible for the hot water system to “burst” because of the pressure build-up. Somehow the pressure should be released and if the pressure relief valve malfunctions, the result is a burst which could damage your home or injure anyone nearby.

How likely is it for a water heater to explode

Hot water tanks from reputable brands can withstand high temperatures and pressures. These tanks are designed to endure the everyday build-up of heat and water vapour. However, if there’s too much of the heat, pressure and water vapour, the tank may not be able to endure the forces inside.

As temperature rises, more water molecules get more active and they try to occupy as much space as possible. Because they can’t get out and they have nowhere else to go, pressure builds up and they continuously bump on to one another and on the interior surfaces of the tank. The result is constant bumping and continuous attempts to get out of the tank.

For safety, the pressure relief valve should always function perfectly. This is crucial because the relief valve is forced open so that some of the contents and build-up pressure can come out. In other words, some of the active water molecules and their heat and pressure content should have a way out and somehow lower the forces inside the tank.

It’s rare to hear news about exploding hot water tanks but this is still a possible scenario. It’s especially the case when the relief valve leaks or malfunctions and the pressure inside the tank has been building up for too long. The bursting is also possible because of faulty installations in the electrical and gas connections.

As a result, it’s crucial to let hot water specialists to do the installation and inspection. That’s what we do here at NSW Hot Water. Our team of hot water specialists (plus plumbing, gas fitting and electrical professionals) ensure 100% compliance to all relevant Australian standards, codes and legislations. Phone us today at (02) 9722 4500 if you think something’s wrong with your hot water or if you need a new unit installed for your home.