Gas water tank install

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by John28, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. John28

    John28 Member

    Messages:
    34
    Location:
    PA
    Need to replace a gas water heater and had a few questions?

    1. Home Depot has Rheem and Lowes has Whirlpool, any preference?

    2. Best way to tie into plumbing , right now the old is hard lined to the tank. Hard line, Copper Flex, Stainless flex, etc.?

    3. I'm replacing the cold shutoff, there is no shutoff for the hot, Should I also install a hot shutoff?

    4. System has no expansion tank, never had any issues as this unit I'm replacing is close to 20 years old. There is no check valve or press, reducing valve within the house. Expansion tank or not? was thinking a expansion tank requires a press. reducing valve?
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,325
    Location:
    New England
    1. Whirlpool has had some issues...I do not know if they've resolved them, but a lot of people have been disappointed. There's a thread here you can peruse...it's long!
    2. In some places, they require it to be hard plumbed, and in others (like in earthquake country), they require it to be flexible. You first need to know what is required where you live. They all work.
    3. In most cases, there's no need for a hot shutoff...the cold one functionally does the same thing.
    4. This depends on where you live. Where I live, regardless of whether it is an open or closed system (i.e., a check valve or PRV creates a closed system, but the water utility may put one in their meter at some later date and not tell you), they require both an expansion tank AND a vacuum breaker to pass code on new and replacement tanks. But, if that isn't the case where you live, unless it is a closed system, you do not require an expansion tank.
  3. John28

    John28 Member

    Messages:
    34
    Location:
    PA

    Thanks, as for the expansion tank, is there any issue installing one, with no press. reducing valve? This way if they do install one later, I have a tank?

    And I thought a vacuum breaker is only required if water tank is above the highest water fixture? As this tank is in the basement, Thanks
  4. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,817
    Location:
    IL
    You could use a pressure meter with a "lazy hand" AKA tattletale hand. It will remember the highest pressure that it has seen. I would get one of those. About $10 to $15 probably. If the pressure stays below 70 PSI, I think if doing new plumbing, I might leave provision for a little tank in the future, but I would not get one now.

    Expansion tank does not require a pressure reducing valve, but a pressure reducing valve or a checkvalve needs an expansion tank.

    Without worrying about codes, flex copper would be best. Some places require flex couplings. Some forbid it. I did it anyway when I replaced the water heater at the old house maybe 25 years ago, and will do it if I replace my current water heater myself.
  5. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,422
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    You can always install with an expansion tank. I prefer having one regardless. There is less pressure drop with an expansion tank in the system.
    Some places like rigid piping. Here in the Northwest we use flex connectors. I like the corragate copper over the stainless, though both work fine. I don't use braided.
    I prefer Rheem over Whirlpool.
  6. John28

    John28 Member

    Messages:
    34
    Location:
    PA

    Thanks, well I got the Rheem and expansion tank, since I'm sweating in new line and a valve, decided to install tank.

    This Rheem just sets on the floor, I have no need to set it on a stand at 18in. as it is in the basement(concrete), dont even use a pan since a floor drain is very near. But question setting on concrete, or should I set it up afew inches on brick pavers, for air flow under it? Just says do not set directly on carpet? thanks
  7. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,422
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    On the Rheem, the air comes from the side, not the bottom.
  8. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,325
    Location:
    New England
    All new gas-fed residential WH require a burner that won't ignite combustible gases/fumes that may accumulate in the area. That was the rationale for raising the WH off of the ground in certain areas to keep them away from things like paint fumes, maybe a propane leak, etc. I do not know if that requirement was repealed with the new burner designs. If the slab regularly gets wet or damp from runoff or say ground water, it makes some sense to raise it on blocks some.
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