New Hybrid Water Heater Install

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MTy

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Code where I am requires a vacuum relief valve on a bottom fed water heater. You should check into that.

Thanks, I'd missed that one.

Vacuum relief on an attic-mounted WH makes sense to me.

MTy, will the WH travel to the attic upright, or will it be tilted up upon arrival?

Taken up on an appliance dolly so 45ish degree angle. Unit is not supposed to be laid flat.
 

Reach4

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Taken up on an appliance dolly so 45ish degree angle. Unit is not supposed to be laid flat.
1. Could pan be put in place while the WH is at 45 degrees on the dolly?
2. Could the WH be placed in the pan, and the whole thing wheeled up already together?

I was wondering what the keep-upright rules might be.

Many refrigerator-type things, such as refrigerators, are not supposed to be put on their side, but if they are, they are supposed to sit upright for a day or two to let the refrigerant settle back down before powering the units.
 

MTy

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1. Could pan be put in place while the WH is at 45 degrees on the dolly?
2. Could the WH be placed in the pan, and the whole thing wheeled up already together?

I was wondering what the keep-upright rules might be.

Many refrigerator-type things, such as refrigerators, are not supposed to be put on their side, but if they are, they are supposed to sit upright for a day or two to let the refrigerant settle back down before powering the units.

Putting the pan under before taking it up I think will make things more difficult getting it up but putting it under while on the hand truck might be a stroke of brilliance.

I might also keep it on electric only mode for a couple days after putting it in in case I've up set any of the refrigerant during the move. Couldn't hurt anyways.
 

MTy

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Factoring in a vacuum relief valve and placement of the water heater to account for clearance required for filter and intake and ceiling slope (inlet and outlet will face to the back) I have come up with this new plan for line routes. Am I correct in my understanding that the vac relief valve does not need to be higher than the heater itself but just higher than the in/outlets?

The loop for the vac relief also solves any heat traps issues.

51729049242_89855e7513_c.jpg
 

Reach4

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Am I correct in my understanding that the vac relief valve does not need to be higher than the heater itself but just higher than the in/outlets?
Yes. I don't have a vacuum relief, but my WH is in the basement.
 

wwhitney

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Am I correct in my understanding that the vac relief valve does not need to be higher than the heater itself but just higher than the in/outlets?
That may depend on the installation instructions for your particular vacuum relief valve (although obviously the physics does not). For example, the Watts LFN36 says "Install No. LFN36 in cold water supply line with or above the highest point in the tank"

Cheers, Wayne
 

Reach4

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LFN36 in cold water supply line with or above the highest point in the tank"
I think it would be fair to say that the tank is below the compressor section. The T&P valve is going to be near the top of the tank.

From a functional point of view, I don't think it would be important to have the vacuum relief to be at or above the top of the tank. Sure, the highest point would be best, but say midway down the tank, or even even with the bottom of the tank, is still going to prevent a vacuum that could collapse the tank.
 

Too Ambitious

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Last Q for now. How do you pros get the thing into drain pans? Code requires a 6 inches walled one. I think building a ramp or s series of platforms the thing can be rocked onto. I'll have help but not enough for a dead lift.

If you have enough muscle to tip it on an edge, you could slide a 2x4 (or thicker if necessary) under one side, then screw the 2x4 down. Then you could tip the other edge up and slip in another 2x4, a bit farther under. Then slide the pan edge under it and put a 2x4 inside the pan under the edge of the water heater. Then maybe twirl the water heater around into the pan?

I did something similar to get mine in the pan by myself. I used piece of scrap 2x4 laid on its edge inside the pan as a fulcrum. But I just used a standard pan, not 6". You might be able to use the same concept with a bigger piece of lumber.

It would be much easier if you had a helper, too. Tilt heater, helper slides pan under, rock heater over the fulcrum, helper removes fulcrum.
 

MTy

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That may depend on the installation instructions for your particular vacuum relief valve (although obviously the physics does not). For example, the Watts LFN36 says "Install No. LFN36 in cold water supply line with or above the highest point in the tank"

Cheers, Wayne

Right most tanks are top fed so physics wise in order to get it high enough it would have to be above the tank.

However as Reach mentioned, my heater has a compressor on top. So I think I should be ok to get it above the tank but shouldn't have to make taller than the unit. That's more what I was getting at.
 

Too Ambitious

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Right most tanks are top fed so physics wise in order to get it high enough it would have to be above the tank.

However as Reach mentioned, my heater has a compressor on top. So I think I should be ok to get it above the tank but shouldn't have to make taller than the unit. That's more what I was getting at.
I installed the Watts vac relief valve on mine and just followed their diagram.

upload_2021-12-7_2-4-48.png



It's above the tank, but not the head unit (not sure if that's the technical term, but it sounds right)


IMG_6998.JPG


I don't know if that gooseneck heat trap is necessary, but... why not?
 

MTy

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Getting it into the pan wasn't too bad with three of us. Stacked some board until they were a bit higher than 6 inches, taped them together, then one person held them while we rocked one end of heater onto them the last person slid the pan underneath and we rocked it until we got it where we wanted.

I rethought the location of the heater and decided to put it next to my furnace. This means I can tie into it's condensate drain assuming no issue with doing that.
But that means probably 1-2 ft. more of copper. Is that additional length going to make much difference in hot water cooling off? I'm insulating the pipes.

Also it means I have to run the pipes across the walkway in the attic. Is it better to run them along the floor? ( Gas line already runs along the floor) or up over the walkway?
 

Jeff H Young

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OK a few feet of copper not a big deal. The question about walkways and floors just isn't very clear. but in general pipes are best where you wont be walking, If its a mandatory cat walk it might be an issue with inspector
 

MTy

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Can it be too cold for flux? Otley 95 flux won't stick to the cleaned pipe. Its about 40-45 in the attic right now.

I left the flux in the 50 degree garage overnight. I warmed it up though.
 

Tuttles Revenge

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you can heat the pipe up slightly with your torch when you apply the flux. I like to heat the joint then wipe it with a clean rag to clean away the excess flux that can make a mess. You'll get nice clean joints this way.

Overheating solder joints is the most common mistake in soldering.
 

MTy

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The project has been a bear. Should finish up tonight. Moving the heater to the other side of the attic, about 4 feet tripled my work because I had to run some pipe under the floor and had to redo previous piping I could have made use of.

Not to mention I have learned that some 3/4 copper and fittings don't go together well test fitting. Also don't leave test fitted pieces together while sweating nearby one or you'll have to cut them off.

1. Condensate line- does the pvc need any dope (mine is rated for plastic) where it screws into the condensate drain hole of the heater?

2. Can I tie my 3/4 condensate line into my 3/4 furnace condensate line before the trap? Or do I need to tie it in further down stream when it becomes 1inch and add a new trap?

3. When I go to test my hot lines for leaks tonight will the water stop flowing from the heater through those lines if I close the ball valve on the cold line?

Or will I need to hook a hose to the tank to drain it in case I have a leak?
 

Reach4

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1. Condensate line- does the pvc need any dope (mine is rated for plastic) where it screws into the condensate drain hole of the heater?
Since it is low pressure and a tiny leak is not going to be a problem, I would think pipe dope would be optional.
2. Can I tie my 3/4 condensate line into my 3/4 furnace condensate line before the trap? Or do I need to tie it in further down stream when it becomes 1inch and add a new trap?
Yes, you can combine before the trap. You should go through an air gap into the standpipe.

3. When I go to test my hot lines for leaks tonight will the water stop flowing from the heater through those lines if I close the ball valve on the cold line?
Potential leaking should be slow and low volume, since it will not be pressurized with the valve off. If you find a leak, turn off the valve, and open a downstairs hot faucet. That should drain water from higher pipes.
 

wwhitney

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1) Why not use pipe dope?

2) Where does the furnace condensate go, and does it have a neutralizer? I'm liking the idea of connecting after the trap, but I don't know if that's required. Certainly connect after the neutralizer.

3) If you don't have a shutoff on the hot side of the tank, you certainly could get drainage through an open hot pipe below the heater. Or you might get lucky and it's air locked and it doesn't run out. [Not sure how the vacuum breaker affects that, perhaps it guarantees it will drain?] I think you need to be prepared to drain the tank to below the hot water outlet level.

Cheers, Wayne
 

MTy

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1) Why not use pipe dope?

2) Where does the furnace condensate go, and does it have a neutralizer? I'm liking the idea of connecting after the trap, but I don't know if that's required. Certainly connect after the neutralizer.

3) If you don't have a shutoff on the hot side of the tank, you certainly could get drainage through an open hot pipe below the heater. Or you might get lucky and it's air locked and it doesn't run out. [Not sure how the vacuum breaker affects that, perhaps it guarantees it will drain?] I think you need to be prepared to drain the tank to below the hot water outlet level.

Cheers, Wayne
Probably hook a garden hose to the drain just to be on the safe side.

I have no idea where the condensate line for the furnace goes or if there is a neutralizer. It's original to the house (built in 78). It drops under floor boards in the attic and then out of sight.
 

wwhitney

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How about a picture of the attic with the furnace condensate line and so forth? I'm inclined to be cautious and wouldn't want to connect to a pipe that I didn't know where it goes.

Cheers, Wayne
 
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