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You may be wondering, “Do I need a permit to replace my water heater in Hayward?”

Currently, Hayward does require a permit for a water heater installation. The good news is we can obtain it for you, and it will not slow down any work on our end.

Every few years, Hayward 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.

Local Water Heater & Plumbing Permits

Water Heater Codes Currently Enforced in Hayward

Approved Location – Most types of water heaters cannot be located in bedrooms, bathrooms, or closets (unless the closet is used solely for the water heater). This prevents accidents and avoids human contact with the small amounts of CO (Carbon Monoxide) that spill from gas heater vents. Hayward currently enforces this.

Earthquake Straps – California is an earthquake zone and 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. Inspectors in Hayward enforce this regulation.

Venting – Most water heaters in Hayward are gas combustion which generate carbon monoxide (CO) as part of the combustion process. These water heaters must be vented properly and the vent must be adequately sized for the water heater. Combustible/ flammable surfaces must have proper clearance if the vent material gets hot. Hayward currently enforces this requirement.

Pans and Drains – A water heater positioned in an interior location or on a built-in platform could cause damage from leakage. The CA Plumbing Code requires a pan under the water heater with a drain line to the exterior. Hayward enforces this requirement. However, CPVC, which is approved material for all kinds of drain lines, is not allowed to be used by the city of Hayward.

Pressure and Temperature Relief Drain (“P&T Drain”) – The California Plumbing Code requires your P&T drain be run to the exterior to prevent accidental scalding while the pressure and temperature relief is discharging. Hayward currently enforces this. Hayward will sometimes allow the use of a Watts 210 valve if piping to the exterior is not possible. Hayward also may allow the P&T Drain to run into a water heater pan if they cannot be run separately. Although CPVC is approved material for all types of drain lines (and less expensive than copper), Hayward will not allow any CPVC use.

Dedicated Water Shutoff – A dedicated water shutoff is required for water heaters. This allows water to the water heater to be shut off for servicing, while water to the rest of the house is still available. Hayward enforces this code item.

Pipe Insulation – Pipes located in space that is unconditioned must be insulated in Hayward.

Bonding – The California Electric Code requires that your water and gas pipes be grounded. You can ground all the pipes by bonding them with 6 awg wire and clamps. Because plumbing is usually built near electrical wiring your pipes could be energized if the wires become frayed. Inspectors in Hayward currently require this.