You may be wondering, “Do I need a permit to replace my water heater in Berkeley?”
Currently, Berkeley does require a permit for a water heater installation. The good news is we can pull the permit for you, and it will not slow down any work on our end.
Every few years, Berkeley water heater codes change to adopt new installation and safety measures. While intended to increase your overall home safety, these code requirements can result in extra installation charges.
Some customers scoff at the idea of paying for a permit for a water heater replacement, but the fact of the matter is water heaters can be dangerous if not installed correctly. In fact, water heaters cause more property damage than any other home appliance. And if the unit is not installed to code by a licensed professional and causes damage, your home insurance could reject any claims. That’s why we put a premium on safety and doing everything by the book.
Your expert technician will go over an item-by-item checklist of all applicable safety codes needed for your installation prior to any work being completed, or cost to you.
We try to keep this information as up-to-date as possible, but your local installer will be able to answer any specific question you may have.
Approved Location – Gas water heater vents release miniscule amounts of CO (Carbon Monoxide) into the air. To prevent accidents and avoid human contact with the CO, regulations are in place stating that water heaters cannot be located in closets (unless used exclusively for water heater), bathrooms or bedrooms. Berkeley enforces this regulation.
Earthquake Straps – As California is in an earthquake zone some regulations are required for everyone’s safety. Water heaters must have certified earthquake straps – one on the top third of the tank and one on the bottom third of the tank. Most inspectors in Berkeley enforce this regulation.
Venting – As most water heaters in Berkeley are gas combustion they generate carbon monoxide as part of the combustion process and must be properly vented. The vent must be adequately sized for the size of the water heater. Correct clearance from flammable or combustible surfaces must be allowed if the vent material tends to get hot. Berkeley currently enforces this requirement.
Pans and Drains – Water heaters located in an interior location or on a built-in platform could leak and cause water damage. Berkeley usually requires that a pan be placed under the water heater with a drain line running to the exterior. This is a requirement of the CA plumbing code. It is our experience that Berkeley requires the drain to run to the exterior.
Pressure and Temperature Relief Drain (“P&T Drain”) to the Exterior – To prevent accidental scalding while the P&T drain is discharging, the CA Code requires your P&T relief drain to be run to the outside. Berkeley enforces this at present.
Dedicated Water Shutoff – Water heaters with a dedicated shutoff are required by CA Plumbing Code. The shutoff allows water to the water heater to be turned off for servicing, while the water to the rest of the house is still available. Berkeley actively enforces this code item.
Pipe Insulation – Pipes exposed to unconditioned space are required to be insulated in Berkeley
Bonding – Water and gas pipes must be grounded. By bonding your pipes with 6 awg wire and clamps you can effectively ground all the pipes. Since plumbing is often built near your electrical wiring, it is possible your pipes could be energized if the wires were to deteriorate. Inspectors in Berkeley currently enforce this requirement.
Sediment Traps – A sediment trap, located on the gas line that runs to your water heater, catches moisture and debris in the gas line and prevents it from entering the combustion chamber of the water heater. Currently, Berkeley actively enforces3 this.
With more than two decades experience, we have installed countless water heaters in single-family homes, condos, apartments and townhouses in Berkeley, CA. All our skilled-technicians are background-checked, thoroughly experienced and trained to efficiently and safely install your new water heater.
Whether you’re replacing a broken, old unit, being proactive and installing a new model, or switching to a tankless water heater, our skilled technicians can answer any of your questions and, generally, get your hot water heater installed the same day you call us.
Most importantly, our technicians are local to the area, which means they are up-to-date on all local plumbing codes, safety regulations and regional installation trends.
We install Rheem water heaters, and are an official Rheem service provider for Berkeley.
We look forward to helping you. Please keep in mind, while we can quote you a starting price over the phone, we are not able to give a final price until a technician is at your home and can see your unique setup. If you’re happy with the final price, your technician will get to work immediately. But due to this uncertainty, our appointments are no cost and no obligation.
Fill out the form below to receive more information about a Berkeley water heater replacement or installation.
Even in Berkeley, water heaters are constantly operating, heating and storing hot water for your use. They’re built to last, but if yours starts leaking or you’re out of hot water, you may need to have your water heater repaired.
Typically, a water heater comes with a warranty anywhere from 5-15 years on parts. For this reason, if you start experiencing issues, try to find the model & serial numbers of your water heater so we can determine if it is still under warranty. Our service technicians are local to Berkeley and are familiar with most regional heater applications, brands and models.
It’s important to note, if your current unit is more than 10 years old, it’s probably nearing its last legs. Considering the cost of labor, rather than repairing it, a more prudent financial choice might be to just replace the water heater.
In Berkeley, common water heater repairs and maintenance include:
Fast Water Heater Company frequently partners with utility companies around Berkeley to offer savings on more energy efficient water heating solutions, in the form of rebates.
These rebates are great because the water heaters utilize energy more efficiently, and save you money as a result.
Check below for water heater specials and rebates in the greater Berkeley area:
Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) Water Heater Rebates
*Tankless water heaters do not qualify
Learn more about PGE Rebates!
Sacramento Municipal Utility Department (SMUD) Water Heater Rebates
Learn more about SMUD Heat Pump Water Heater Rebates