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Common Water Heater Codes

Water Heater Installation CodesFast Water Heater Company performs installations as safely as possible to protect you and your family. Due to various injuries and accidents related to water heaters over the last ten years, most cities and counties have adopted either the 2001, 2003 or 2006 Uniform Plumbing Code (or in the case of California, the California Plumbing Code).

When we perform your installation, we will inspect your heater and ensure that it is up to date on all relevant safety codes.

Also, on the back of your invoice, you will find a list of all of the state codes that are relevant for your installation.

Some examples of common water heater codes include:

Gas and Electric Water Heater Codes

Earthquake strapping: In earthquake zones, your water heater must have approved earthquake straps installed. If approved straps are already installed, we can re-use them. Earthquake straps prevent severe damage and fire in the event of an earthquake.

Installation Water Heater CodesPressure & Temperature Relief Line: Depending on your location, you may be required to pipe your P&T relief line to an exterior or approved location. This is to prevent very hot water from scalding you as it discharges.

Expansion Tanks: Expansion tanks are required in some areas when the customer is on what is called a “closed” water system. On a closed system, when water is heated, thermal expansion can cause rapid increases and decreases in system pressure which causes wear and tear on the tank and all of your plumbing. An expansion tank prevents this from occurring and in many cases can even double the life of the hot water heater.

Pan and drain: If your water heater is on a wood floor without a drain, in an attic or attic ceiling assembly or some other location where damage may result from a leaking tank, a pan and drain to an approved location is often required.  This keeps the tank from leaking onto the surrounding area and is used to prevent property damage.

Gas Water Heater Codes

Adequate venting: Your hot water heater releases Carbon Monoxide (CO) and must be vented safely to prevent CO from leaking into your home. If the energy input on the new heater is greater than the old heater, we may need to upsize some portion of your venting. This is important for your safety.

Stand: Although new water heaters have sealed combustion chambers, many cities still require that your water heater is elevated off of the ground. In many cases, the city has additional requirements around what type of material the stand may be made of. Most of our hot water heaters are FVIR, or flammable vapor ignition resistant, which technically do not need to be put on a stand. Many cities are still learning about these new, safer heaters and still require us to elevate your tank.

Codes For Installing Water HeatersSediment Trap: Codes require us to place a sediment trap on the gas line into the water heater as close to the inlet as possible. This is to prevent moisture and debris from entering the firing chamber of the hot water heater.

Barrier or bollard: If your gas water heater is in the direct path of a car, you may be required to install a barrier or bollard between the garage and the water heater. The barrier is meant to prevent a moving vehicle from knocking the heater over and worse, severing the gas line.

Electric Water Heater Codes

Bottom board: For electric tanks in unheated spaces, the tank must be placed on an incompressible, insulated surface with a minimum thermal resistance of R-10. This bottom board is to help prevent heat loss out of the bottom of an electric water heater and can increase energy efficiency.

Call us now at (866) 574-2963 for more information on any codes or regulations in your area.

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