Home AppliancesWater Heater

How To Open Pressure Relief Valve on a Water Heater

Continuous Flow Electric Hot Water System

A water heater is a smart appliance that provides hot water within a few minutes. It has several beneficial features that make it a safe and convenient option for users.

Although dealing with several knobs and valves seems intimidating, knowing about your water heater is essential to fix minor issues and keeping things running smoothly.

Your water heater has a safety component called a pressure relief valve that stabilizes the water system if the pressure or temperature level inside the heater rises above the desired operating level.

Learning about the pressure relief valve and how to open it is essential.


Opening the pressure relief valve on your water heater is as easy as A, B, and C.

First, locate your pressure relief valve at the top of your water heater. Then, lift the lever of the valve to open it and pull the lever down to close the valve.

Read more about the pressure relief valve and how to open it if needed.

What Is a Pressure Relief Valve and How To Open It?

Man Working At Pipes.

Just like everything, water also expands when it heats up. This expanded water creates pressure inside the water heater, and that’s where the pressure relief valve comes into work.

Once the pressure rises above the desired level, the pressure relief valve opens automatically and expels the excessive water to normalize the temperature.

The pressure valve is mainly located at the top of the water heater or near the hot water supply.

How To Open the Pressure Relief Valve?

It is a good practice to check the pressure relief valve once a year and look for any leakage or issue with the lever movement.

Here is how to do it.

  1. Locate the pressure relief valve on your heater. It comes with a lever that lifts up and down.
  2. Place a bucket under the drain pipe and lift the lever.
  3. The heater will expel excess water, and it will start accumulating inside the bucket.
  4. Pull the lever down and check the water supply.
  5. Ideally, it should stop once the lever is down. However, if the water still drips, get the valve replaced.

Always remember that pressure relief valves are sensitive to specific models and brands.

If you have a faulty or leaked valve, it is better to look for a replacement for the specific brand.


A pressure relief valve is a safety feature that keeps your water heater from exploding due to excessive pressure. If you feel your valve is not opening automatically, it is good to check it manually.

Lift the lever to open the valve and check the water supply from the drainage pipe to get a better idea.

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