Cost of moving a water heater?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by CapnSharpe, Nov 2, 2002.

  1. CapnSharpe

    CapnSharpe Stunt Coordinator

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    My water heater, which is located in the attic, sprung a leak from it's drain valve last weekend after I drained it for sediment. The thing is on it's last legs and should be replaced soon, before it goes completely and dumps 40+ gallons of luke-warm water inside my house.
    I called a few plumbers yesterday to try and get an estimate of having a new water heater installed in the garage instead of the attic, or at least to find out the installation cost of tankless water heater in the attic. All of them told me they would have to see the house and I would have to pay for privilege of an estimate. [​IMG]
    Has anyone here had a water heater moved from the attic to the garage? Or had a tankless water heater installed in your attic? Is the cost reasonable or should I just get a new water heater put in above my head again?
     
  2. DonnyD

    DonnyD Screenwriter

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    Moving a water heater can be a task..and expensive since it does require moving incomingand outgoing water lines as well as as electrical feed... Personally, I would have the heater replaced at its current location but also have the drain pan replaced while you are at it. Any competent plumber will assure that your drain line from the pan is adequate enough just in case.
     
  3. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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  4. Dheiner

    Dheiner Gazoo
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  5. Patrick_S

    Patrick_S Producer
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    Only word of advice I can give is to stay away from tank-less water heaters. Sure they provide some hot water right away but then everything is luke-warm. Doesn't make for nice long HOT showers.
     
  6. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    The tankless is a pretty good idea. You have to pay attention to the sizing, though, and take water inlet temperature into consideration. Doing so, makes it quite easy to avoid the pitfalls Patrick speaks of.

    I think tankless is a better way for most to heat their water, particularly for a modest sized home in the South, with only one person living in it (assuming those are your circumstances). Alternately, you may not save too much with it. From a hot water point-of-view, the attic's a great place for a tank, given that you're in Houston. If you just get a new tank installed, have a drip tray with drain to outside installed under the tank to minimize future problems.

    Todd
     
  7. CapnSharpe

    CapnSharpe Stunt Coordinator

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    The current water heater uses gas and has a pan underneath it. The pan and water heater both have pvc pipes that allegedly end outside, just in case of a disaster. I know where the pipes end outside in the brick veneer. Naturally the pipes were cut off. If water goes through those pipes it will likely come back into house through the brick or the weep hole underneath the pipes.
    Last week's drip became an emergency because the water seaped through the pan and into the timber under the pan and water heater. I kept a watchful eye with a cup under the leaky drain and a few towels to prevent damage to the drywall and insulation. After this incident, I find it hard to believe that a water heater in an attic is good idea.
    I would only go with a tankless water heater if it could handle 2 showers simultaneously AND the variation in water temperature from outside. In August the water comes pre-boiled and in January the water can be freezing.
    The 2 car garage is attached and has both the water and gas lines going through it. I know where the gas line is in the garage. The water is a bit of mystery. The main shutoff valve is on the opposite side of the garage from the gas line (I think the water line is buried under the front yard in a diagonal or other odd pattern). The distance between the water heater's current location and where I would like it is 18 feet and near the utility room adjacent to the garage, which contains both gas and water lines from the attic. Heck, if the utility room weren't so small it would be perfect for the water heater.
    I know the HVAC contractors provide free estimates. The a/c condensor and water heater have been in a competition to see who can die first. I already know what the a/c condensor will cost me next Spring, assuming I can't get one more year out of it. [​IMG]
     
  8. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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    I'd yank that sucker and put a new one in the garage! Why duplicate the mistake? I can't see it costing that much more to put it in the garage.
     
  9. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    it sounds like it's leaking from the temperature and pressure valve, have you put a new T&P on? they're about 10 bucks, how old is the tank?

    moving to the garage would be expensive, the water considerations already mentioned but also gas pipe is never cheap, and there are venting considerations, if there's living space above the garage you'll have to run it out the front or side if there's room, also kinda spendy.. the platform mentioned, also some places require earthquake strapping now too.
     
  10. CapnSharpe

    CapnSharpe Stunt Coordinator

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    Philip,

    If there's an earthquake in Houston Texas then the water heater will be the least of my concerns - my cheaply built house would likely collapse. The leak was on the bottom valve I used to drain my water heater. The plumber replaced it last Sunday on time and a half. The tank is almost 4.5 years old, but it has taken quite a bit of abuse (the previous never had the vent pipe caulked, so it rained on the water heater for 2 years). Both the pan and the heating elements have to be replaced. It almost seems pointless. If it's as expensive as everyone is saying, then perhaps a tankless water heater is worth further consideration.
     
  11. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    if it's required by code in your area, the building inspector doesn't really care if you care or not. Code's code, of course if your contractor bothers to get a permit and get it inspected. Many don't.
     

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