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TOPIC: base on the gas water heater

base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26833

Is it required to to have a raised base on the gas water heater in a basement ?

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I've Been Rich and I've Been Poor "Rich" is Better
Fitzgerald Home Inspection
Link URL: www.sanfernandovalleyhomeinspection.com/
Body:Providing the best Home Inspections,Los Angeles and Ventura Counties 818-929-4860
Key Words:San Fernando Valley home inspections,Home...

Re: base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26836

There is no specific code requirement to elevate water heaters in basements.  The code is specific to garages.  It would be an good recommendation for safety.

P2801.6  Water heaters installed in garages.  Water heaters having an ignition source shall be elevated such that the source of ignition is not less than 18 inches (457 mm) above the garage floor.

People store gas cans, paint thinners, etc. in garages.  The vapors are heavier that air and sink to the floor of the garage.  The igition source of a water heater can ignite the vapors.  If the ignition source is at least 18 inches above the floor, the ignition source is likely to be above the vapors.  Of course the vapors must be the proper concentration with adequate oxygen to explode. 

Electric water heaters can create sparks where the wires attach to the thermostat.  Electric heaters have ignition sources.  There is not specific code requirement to install receptacles in a garage at least 18 inches above the floor but it would be a good safety recommendation to call out any receptacles less than 18 inches above the floor in a garage for the same reason.

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Bruce Ramsey, ACI
Last Edit: by Bruce Ramsey.

Re: base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26838

Thanks Bruce, The reason I ask is I do escrow repairs as well as home inspection. I had a call on one today and the inspector called it out as it was sitting on the floor. Now I have installed many water heaters in basements and never raised them but before I tell the owner the inspector is wrong I wanted to check

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I've Been Rich and I've Been Poor "Rich" is Better
Fitzgerald Home Inspection
Link URL: www.sanfernandovalleyhomeinspection.com/
Body:Providing the best Home Inspections,Los Angeles and Ventura Counties 818-929-4860
Key Words:San Fernando Valley home inspections,Home...

Re: base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26840

I had a call on one today and the inspector called it out as it was sitting on the floor. Now I have installed many water heaters in basements and never raised them but before I tell the owner the inspector is wrong I wanted to check


Is the inspector wrong?  How did he describe the situation?

If he called it out as a Safety Item due to potential ignition source to vapors collecting in the lowest level  of the house, then I agree with him.  People often store items with explosive vapors in basements.

If he called it out due to potential flooding potential and says it needs an overflow pan, then I agree that is a good recommendation.

Did the inspector say it was a code violation or a safety issue.  If it is described as a code violation, then ask for a specific reference from the inspector.  If he is describing it as a safety issue, make sure you understand what he believes to be the specific unsafe condition.  I am not convinced you have done due diligence regarding the situation before you call the other fella wrong. 

Installing a lot of water heaters does make you knowledgeable about plumbing code, it just means you were able to connect the pipes.  You might want to ask you question over at www.askcodeman.com/

Jerry loves to pour thorough all the code for any vague reference that might explain the do's and dont's of any situation.  If there is any obsure code reference regarding elevating water heaters, he would be able to find it.

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Bruce Ramsey, ACI

Re: base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26841

Due diligence is what I am doing by posting the question. There is no code it was a recommendation with out explanation. I do learn something new everyday even after "40 Yrs. of hooking up pipes"

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I've Been Rich and I've Been Poor "Rich" is Better
Fitzgerald Home Inspection
Link URL: www.sanfernandovalleyhomeinspection.com/
Body:Providing the best Home Inspections,Los Angeles and Ventura Counties 818-929-4860
Key Words:San Fernando Valley home inspections,Home...

Re: base on the gas water heater 14 years 4 months ago #26850

Hey Gary -- Check with a local gas-licensed plumber and see what they do locally.

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Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia
www.jaymarinspect.com
Northern Virginia Home Inspector
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