Troubleshooting: Water Heater in a Crawlspace

Even if a full-height water heater fits within the vertical limitations of a crawlspace, the installation may not meet code.

A good way to create an air gap in the discharge pipe is to plumb in a reducer that acts as a cup. The plumbing shown in the photo, however, has created a scald hazard, because the air gap is not within 6 inches of the floor.

The discharge pipe from a T&P valve can’t have tees, and it can’t tie into other lines, such as the condensate line from the furnace.

The discharge pipe must slope down, but the crimp reduces the diameter of the pipe, which is a code violation.

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