Bradford White gas water heater discharges about an inch of water into a five gallon bucket over 3 to 4 days. It is less than a year old. Is it working properly, or does it need repair already?

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    From the T&P valve? Either way, I'd say no, it is not working properly. – iLikeDirt Feb 24 '15 at 21:30
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    Assuming it is the T&P valve, try replacing the T&P valve first (like $15) before resorting to more expensive alternatives. Once opened they tend to continue leaking. Same thing if it's the drain valve, they throw cheap ones on there from the factory. You can replace it with a good quality brass one instead of lame plastic. – Jimmy Fix-it Feb 25 '15 at 6:04
  • Is there an expansion tank (looks like a small propane tank) installed near the water heater? Also, can you confirm where the water is being discharged from? – Tester101 Feb 25 '15 at 13:08
  • @JimmyFix-it Simply throwing parts at the problem, is almost never the right solution. A novice replacing a T&P valve can often cause more problems then it cures. Diagnose the system, and find the problem before replacing parts. – Tester101 Feb 25 '15 at 13:11

Actually, this requires a system analysis to determine if it's a problem of the water heater, or a problem of your system needing a expansion tank.

For instance, if your water supply is provided with a check valve or a pressure reducing valve/regulator on its input, a water heater full of cold water will cause expansion, and without an expansion tank or an open connection to a supply (which a check or regualtor is not) to relieve pressure, pressure in the system will rise as the cold water is heated and expands.

You may be seeing this more in the winter as your water supply may be colder, so it has more potential to expand.

The valve is a temperature and pressure relief valve, so EITHER overheating OR overpressure will cause it to vent. I'm going to guess that it's more likely a pressure issue, and would probably be easily resolved by adding a small expansion tank; but I can't be sure about that without more details about your water system, or actual measurements of the temperature and pressure when it's venting.

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During normal operation, no water should be discharged from the T&P (temp and pressure relief) valve. If the water is leaking from the valve at the bottom of the unit, then it likely isn't shut fully.

If you're talking about the T&P valve, either the valve is faulty, or a fault condition is occurring that is causing the water heater to overheat. You should definitely have someone repair or replace the unit.

If the valve at the bottom is leaking, ensure that it is closed - the screw should be perpendicular to the flow of the valve. If it is even slightly off (pointing parallel to the flow of the valve), then it might leak a bit.

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