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Electric Hot Water Heaters in Garages
November 7, 2019
5:41 am
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ramanbhalla845@gmail.com
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If you have the Best Electric Water Heater you can enjoy the hot water whenever you want.

December 1, 2008
4:13 pm
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john kopp
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Because these items are all stated by the Manufacturer the following are considered corrections if they are not done per the Manufacturer instructions.

Missing drain pan - Manf. requirement over locations that could result in damage due to water leaking.

Drain pan not 4? larger than water heater tank.

No drain line for drain pan.

Bottom of W/H not sealed to floor (or drain pan) with sealant or optional leg kit installed.

Thermal expansion tank missing in closed water supply system.

December 1, 2008
4:02 pm
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john kopp
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They did not say it however I interrupt this as having to be 18? high in a residential garage due to storage of probable ignition items. I pasted the following important items out of the install instructions.

Bradford White
ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

This water heater must be installed in accordance with local codes. In the
absence of local codes, install this water heater in accordance with the
N.E.C. Reference Book (latest edition).

This water heater shall NOT be installed in any location where gasoline
or flammable vapors are likely to be present, unless the installation is
such to eliminate the probable ignition of gasoline or flammable
vapors.

This water heater must be located in an area where leakage of the tank or
water line connections and the combination temperature and pressure relief
valve will not result in damage to the area adjacent to the water heater or to
lower floors of the structure. When such locations cannot be avoided, a
suitable drain pan must be installed under the water heater. The drain pan
must have a minimum length and width of at least 4 in. (10.2 cm) greater
than the diameter of the water heater. The drain pan, as described above,
can be purchased from your plumbing professional. The drain pan must be
piped to an adequate drain. The piping must be pitched for proper drainage.

To comply with NSF requirements this water heater is to be:
a) Sealed to the floor with sealant, in a smooth and easily cleanable
way, or
b) Installed with an optional leg kit that includes legs and/or extensions
that provide a minimum clearance of 6? beneath the water heater.

If this water heater is installed in a closed water supply system, such as the
one having a back-flow preventer in the cold water supply, provisions shall
be made to control thermal expansion. DO NOT operate this water heater in
a closed system without provisions for controlling thermal expansion. Your
water supplier or local plumbing inspector should be contacted on how to
control this situation.

[IMG]http://img114.imageshack.us/img114/777/electwhinstsl3.jpg[/IMG]

December 4, 2008
6:15 am
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tcart
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Dave I have thought about it. Also have had lots of problems with them going off from a lawnmower or other type of unit stored in garage and leaking. Most manufactures make you replace the water heater at a cost of 500-600 dollars. I have had a lot of experice with them as I was a facture service rep for most of the majore water heater manufactures.

December 4, 2008
5:13 am
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dsjtecserv
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I agree with Ken too, but I don''t think that means that ONLY gas flames are considered sources of ignition. The code is explicit in citing other equipment that can cause an arc or spark during its operation. That does include electical switches and relays. I agree with Ken that reasonable judgment can be applied to cases where the switch is effectively isolated from the atmosphere. That also applies to gas flames, particularly in direct vent equipment, which are just as effectively isolated.

Terry, I''ve made the point before, and you might want to consider this: elevating a flmmable vapor ignition resistant (FVIR) water heater may actually create a more dangerous situation. A little background might help. Elevation first became required as a stopgap measure to try to delay potential ignition of gasoline vapors after a spill. The idea was that by buying some time, either the level of the heavier-than-air vaoprs would not build up to the level of the ignition source, or there would be time to ventilate the area and eliminate the vapors. The downside of this method was, and still is, that if there is an ignition, it will involve a lot more flammable vapor than would be the case is the ignition occurred earlier, before vapors had built up to such a large pool. By buying some time, we are also running the risk of a more catastrophic event, should one occur.

FVIR water heaters substantially reduce the risk of ignition, even if they become immersed in flammable vapors. This reduces the need to use the "buy time" strategy of avoiding ignition -- we have a better approach. But the risk of a more catastrophic ignition from a deeper pool of vapor has not gone away. If you elevated an FVIR water heater, and an ignition occurs anyway, you have the likelihood of a more destructive, and potentially deadly event, than if the same thing happened with the WH not elevated.

The realization that the balance of risk has shifted from "event avoidance" to "event consequences" is one of the reasons that the ANSI subcommittee overseeing water heater standards created the exception to elevation for FVIR water heaters, and the equivalent exception was added to the codes.

Hope that give you something to think about.

Dave

December 4, 2008
4:14 am
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jim baird
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I agree with Ken, and have always regarded "ignition source" as referring to gas flame, as in gas WH.

By the way, Jeff got this same question going on another BB that''s for home inspectors. It raised quite a difference of opinions there too.

December 3, 2008
1:14 pm
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tcart
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Around here I require any thing that can cause a spark to be elevated off the garage floor. That includes washer, dryer, etc. When we adopt the new code we will probaly amend to exclude the flame vapor water heater and require them to be elevated. Taht is probaly why I am the A--H--- around here instead of AHJ.

December 3, 2008
11:36 am
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lockek
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Electric water heater elements are inside the tank in water. The electrical portions of the elements are typically enclosed behind an access door which also has insulation around it. To me, this would not be a "source of ignition".

As to Dyers, Refrigerators and other electrically powered appliances, I''m not sure I would look to those as "sources of ignition" of they are all electric. The only other real concern would be the protection from damage depending on the placement of these appliances in the garage.

Luckily, this section was removed from the Florida version, so now we only have to comply with the manufacturer''s installation instructions. Anyone look at a washer/dryer installation requirements for garages lately? I haven''t.

December 3, 2008
10:17 am
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alias
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Good question jar.

I don''t require 18" for electric water heaters on a garage installation. We have a lot of electric w/h here but most are installed in the home. I do require them to put the pan under the water heater and strap it. I have had one contractor I argued with for quite some time over the strapping. Anybody else have this problem?

Sue, in CA

December 3, 2008
9:47 am
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fredk
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My take is the entire electic tank doesn''t have to be elevated 18" off floor but only enough that the center on the lower access panel is. That said the only stand I''ved seen used is 18" tall.

December 2, 2008
10:39 am
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frank castelvecchi
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The Anti tip brackets for stoves are the result of manufacturer''s getting sued when kids use the open oven door as a step to be able to reach the pots on the stove, tipping over the stove and dumping the hot pot''s contents on themselves resulting in sometimes significant injury.

December 2, 2008
8:59 am
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inspectorgift
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sp_Print Print Post Post #12

Mtlogcabin, glad you brought up the brackets... (Aren''t those "anti-tip" brackets?) In either case, they are required by the manufacture, and should be installed, as per M1307.1.

Someone else took the picture below, but it is worth reposting: (click on image for larger view)
[Image Can Not Be Found]

December 2, 2008
8:33 am
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mtlogcabin
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should also require them to be strapped to resist seismic displacement
My gas stove and dishwasher came from the manufacture with brackets to attach them to the floor to prevent seismic displacement.
M1307.2 Anchorage of appliances.
Appliances designed to be fixed in position shall be fastened or anchored in an approved manner.

December 1, 2008
8:42 pm
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inspectorgift
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Jar546, to chime in with the group...

Most all of the electric water heaters I''ve seen installed in residential garages are safe to set on the floor of the garage. Many jurisdictions have issued code interpretations allowing electric water heaters to be within 18 inches of the residential garage floor. [URL=http://www.cbs.state.or.us/external/bcd/programs/plumbing/2008_opsc/Chapter_5.pdf](Click here to read the State of Oregon''s Plumbing Code, section 508.14 (4))[/URL]

However, washing machines and dryers do not require permits, nor are nthey usually installed at the time of final inspection, they are not required for final occupancy, and as such are often not regulated or inspected.

Jeff, if we were to require the dryer and washing machines to be elevated, we should also require them to be strapped to resist seismic displacement -- like here on the West Coast. And what about sources of inignition from the lawn mower, shop vacuum, electric battery chargers, etc...? Where do we stop? IMHO, the code is adressing permanent appliance installations, such as a furnace or water heater.

December 1, 2008
4:13 pm
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john kopp
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sp_Print Print Post Post #15

Because these items are all stated by the Manufacturer the following are considered corrections if they are not done per the Manufacturer instructions.

Missing drain pan - Manf. requirement over locations that could result in damage due to water leaking.

Drain pan not 4? larger than water heater tank.

No drain line for drain pan.

Bottom of W/H not sealed to floor (or drain pan) with sealant or optional leg kit installed.

Thermal expansion tank missing in closed water supply system.

December 1, 2008
4:02 pm
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john kopp
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sp_Print Print Post Post #16

They did not say it however I interrupt this as having to be 18? high in a residential garage due to storage of probable ignition items. I pasted the following important items out of the install instructions.

Bradford White
ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

This water heater must be installed in accordance with local codes. In the
absence of local codes, install this water heater in accordance with the
N.E.C. Reference Book (latest edition).

This water heater shall NOT be installed in any location where gasoline
or flammable vapors are likely to be present, unless the installation is
such to eliminate the probable ignition of gasoline or flammable
vapors.

This water heater must be located in an area where leakage of the tank or
water line connections and the combination temperature and pressure relief
valve will not result in damage to the area adjacent to the water heater or to
lower floors of the structure. When such locations cannot be avoided, a
suitable drain pan must be installed under the water heater. The drain pan
must have a minimum length and width of at least 4 in. (10.2 cm) greater
than the diameter of the water heater. The drain pan, as described above,
can be purchased from your plumbing professional. The drain pan must be
piped to an adequate drain. The piping must be pitched for proper drainage.

To comply with NSF requirements this water heater is to be:
a) Sealed to the floor with sealant, in a smooth and easily cleanable
way, or
b) Installed with an optional leg kit that includes legs and/or extensions
that provide a minimum clearance of 6? beneath the water heater.

If this water heater is installed in a closed water supply system, such as the
one having a back-flow preventer in the cold water supply, provisions shall
be made to control thermal expansion. DO NOT operate this water heater in
a closed system without provisions for controlling thermal expansion. Your
water supplier or local plumbing inspector should be contacted on how to
control this situation.

[IMG]http://img114.imageshack.us/img114/777/electwhinstsl3.jpg[/IMG]

December 1, 2008
3:19 pm
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fmanuel
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Gift, thanks, but I was only focusing on where the power cords were on the machine and the controls, not all the inner workings. Never really took one apart to see how they go together. Jar, I believe the intent of the Code was only for the water heaters that would be installed in a garage, the old water heaters used to have the opne flame, freely communicating with the air around the water heater, and any vapors in that garage would have probably have been exposed to the open flame. Now todays water heaters, are better built in sealed combustion chambers, with very small vent holes under the water heater. I just checked a gas water heater spec sheet (Sealed combustion chamber) and it still said to raise a minimum of 18 inches off of the garage floor.

December 1, 2008
3:03 pm
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mtlogcabin
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sp_Print Print Post Post #18

The mechanical code refers to appliances need to be elevated
APPLIANCE. A device or apparatus that is manufactured and designed to utilize energy and for which this code provides specific requirements.

Do photo eyes use energy? Does the code provide specific requirements for refrigerators and freezers?
Jar I believe the code refers to electric water heaters but some of us may have taken it to far with regards to items not specifically covered in the code. good post you got me thinking.

December 1, 2008
2:17 pm
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jar546
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The heating element of dryers is in the back and drops down to well within the 18" mark.

The blower motor for the dryer is also at the bottom and with washers, it is the same for the pump and motor, at the bottom.

Water heaters are primarily controlled from the top element 7 post thermostat and although it does have a lower thermostat, it is inside a sealed plastic unit.

Also, photo eyes are nothing more than switches so if you want a water heater to comply then garage door sensors need to too.

If you are enforcing the 18" rule for water heaters then you need to start enforcing more items to be raised. It is under the same pretense.

December 1, 2008
2:12 pm
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inspectorgift
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sp_Print Print Post Post #20

Fred, the dryer and washer motors are often at the bottom of the machine, and within 18" of the floor.