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The picture below shows the leak that my on-demand water heater developed. What's the likeliest culprit? Is it where the blue tube connects to the fitting or is it the fitting itself? In either case, can it be repaired? Also, what do you call the conic-shaped gasket that creates the seal in the compression fitting?

enter image description here

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  • Hard to tell where the leak is coming from based on the photo. Can you dry everything off and turn the hot water on and see where it’s leaking from? – daneb Jan 18 at 2:25
  • your question Is it where the blue tube connects .... can be asked only of a person that can touch the heater and examine it (that would be you) ... the only answerable question that you can ask here is could it be where the blue tube connects .... ... and the answer is always yes – jsotola Jan 18 at 3:31
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To identify the source of the leak:

  • Dry it thoroughly.
  • Come back in a little bit (depending on how fast it's leaking) with a dry paper towel.
  • Starting at the top, carefully wipe around the blue PEX/brass fitting junction - check the paper towel for moisture.
  • If it's dry, move down to the brass/white plastic junction.
  • If it's still dry, continue moving down until the towel shows water.

When you've wiped around an area of the fitting and the towel comes up wet, you've found the source of the leak.

Is it fixable?

That depends on where the leak is.

If it's in the white plastic, that's probably not fixable (i.e., don't count on just gluing it back together). It looks very much like a bespoke piece that you will have to order from a plumbing supplier or direct from the manufacturer. Once you have that part removed, you may discover that it's just a fancy connector that could be replaced by some standard brass fittings. Your best bet would probably be to take it to your local plumbing supply house or home improvement center and find some fittings that match the threads on the heater end and on the existing brass fitting end (i.e. bodge something together that will work).

If it's in the PEX or the brass fitting, those are off-the-shelf, stock items that you should be able to source from your local home improvement center and replace. The replacement technique will vary depending on exactly where it's leaking, and would be an excellent topic for a new question with clear, focused pics showing exactly where the leak is.

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Plastic fittings seem to leak much more than their metal counterpart. Plastic is more likely to be cross threaded and break when force is applied.

The drip appears to be from the blue hose/brass nut connection as you can see the hard water deposits above the nut and thee blue hose has a low spot that wouldn't allow water to reach the fitting.

To repair the leak make sure the plastic fitting isn't cracked (or replace it with a brass one).If that's not possible remove the nut, wrap the threads with Teflon tape, reposition the ferrule on the hose, and re-tighten snuggly.

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