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

Currently, Santa Rosa 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, Santa Rosa 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 Santa Rosa installer can answer any specific questions you have.

Local Water Heater & Plumbing Permits – Santa Rosa, CA

Water Heater Codes Currently Enforced in Santa Rosa

Approved Location – Most types of water heaters are not permitted in bedrooms, bathrooms or closets (unless the closet is dedicated only for use of a water heater). This prevents accidental burns or other injuries as well as possible contact with small amounts of Carbon Monoxide (CO) that spill from the gas water heater vent. Santa Rosa currently enforces this.

Earthquake Straps – California is an earthquake zone and as such, water heaters must have certified earthquake straps attached to the top third and bottom third of the water heater. This will be enforced by Santa Rosa for your safety.

Venting – Most water heaters in Santa Rosa are gas combustion and generate carbon monoxide (CO) as part of the combustion process. The water heater must be properly vented. The size of the vent must be adequate for the size of the water heater. If the ventilation material gets hot, you must have ample clearance from flammable or combustible surfaces. Currently Santa Rosa actively enforces this requirement.

Pans and Drains – Some water heaters are placed on a built-in raised area or in an interior position where there is a potential for leakage, Usually, Santa Rosa requires a pan beneath the water heater with an attached drain to the exterior. This is required by the CA Plumbing Code. Santa Rosa requires the drain to run to the exterior.

Pressure and Temperature Relief Drain (“P&T Drain”) to the Exterior – Your P&T Relief Drain is required to run to the exterior of your house. This prevents the scalding of someone close to the water heater while the P&T relief is discharging. This is a requirement of the California Plumbing Code. Santa Rosa currently enforces this. In some cases where piping to the exterior is not possible a Watts 210 valve may be substituted. Santa Rosa may allow this.

Dedicated Water Shutoff – Water heaters require a dedicated water shutoff. If your water heater needs servicing, the shutoff allows the water running to the heater to be turned off without disrupting water to the rest of the house. Santa Rosa actively enforces this code item. (46)

Pipe Insulation – Any pipes that are exposed to an unconditioned space must be insulated in Santa Rosa.

Bonding – According to the California Electric Code your water and gas pipes must be grounded to prevent the danger of your pipes being energized. You can ground the pipes using 6 AWG wire and clamps. Inspectors in Santa Rosa are presently enforcing this requirement.

Sediment Traps – Sediment traps are located on gas lines running to the hot water heater. They are used to catch moisture and debris in the gas line and stop it from getting into the combustion chamber of the heater. Santa Rosa enforces this requirement.