Are you a homeowner looking to install a water heater or replace an existing one? Do-it-yourself projects are a great way to feel a sense of accomplishment and save some money. But projects such as water heater installations should be left to licensed individuals. Attempting DIY water heater installation can be challenging for you as a homeowner and has many associated risks. For you to properly install a water heater, you need specialized equipment as well as specific training. Lack of adequate skills leaves you susceptible to making mistakes that may cost you a lot in the future. Also, you need to have access to special equipment, which can be expensive to purchase. The following are some reasons why DIY water heater installation may not be worthwhile.
1. Dangers Related to Gas Lines
Gas is highly flammable and is easily ignited. That is why you should be cautious when handling the gas lines. The effects of gas leakage can be devastating. It can result in massive explosions, fire hazards, and carbon monoxide poisoning. You may not notice carbon monoxide poisoning since carbon monoxide is an odorless gas. Thus, you need to have a functional carbon monoxide detector in your home. Also, ensure that you check it regularly. Carbon monoxide poisoning may have some symptoms, which include headaches, nausea, and dizziness.
Because of the many safety protocols and local regulations that you are supposed to comply with when installing gas lines, you should leave the task to a licensed person. Our plumbers can install the lines and test them for efficiency and safety. They also have the necessary tools to repair leaks if they occur.
2. Electrical Dangers
The electrical dangers involved are among the most important reasons to refrain from DIY water heater installation. Installing an electric water heater looks easy, but it can be dangerous if you do not have the necessary experience and skills. The wiring should be thoroughly inspected when installing a water heater that runs on electricity. Faulty installation or improper wiring can result in an electrical shock or a fire hazard that can damage your home. If professional plumbers install the water heater, they will ensure it is connected to a dedicated circuit that can easily handle the electrical load demands. Additionally, they connect the water heater to a grounding wire that protects it from shorts and electrical faults.
Turning the power on before the tank is filled with water and all air is purged is an electrical danger. If the heating elements are turned on before the tank is full, they can become damaged and cause a short circuit, leading to an electrical shock or a fire hazard. Filling the water heater with water and purging any air from the lines ensures that the water heater functions effectively and that there are no hazards to worry about. Besides electrical dangers, you should also be worried about the clearance and ventilation requirements when installing a water heater. They require proper ventilation, which prevents the accumulation of flammable gases and ensures proper combustion.
3. Pressure Relief Valve Dangers
The TPR valve and connected discharge tube of a water heater are essential components that should operate well at all times to avoid any potential disaster. When a water heater is running normally, the TPR valve is always ready to release pressure from the tank. When it does so, the discharge tube should be capable of safely discharging the potentially scalding water. High pressure in the tank can be caused by sediment accumulation or an improperly functioning thermostat.
Nonetheless, incorrect TPR valve installation can lead to some dangers. For instance, water may leak if the valve is installed at the wrong angle or not well-fastened. Water leaks can cause severe damage to your home, especially if it goes unnoticed for a long time. It can cost a fortune to repair water leak damage. Another danger of improperly installing a TPR valve is that it may not function efficiently in the event of an emergency. The water heater tank can become over-pressurized and be at risk of explosion. An explosion can be hazardous if the tank is in a small space, where it can cause massive damage to your home and put you in danger.
It is crucial that the TPR valve is installed by licensed plumbers who have the necessary equipment to do so since they test the valve and ensure it performs at peak efficiency. In addition to proper installation, the valve needs to be inspected regularly. With time, the valve may be blocked by sediment or corroded, preventing it from being efficient.
4. You Need a Plumbing Permit
Most municipalities require that you have a permit before installing a water heater. Permitting agencies can be very strict about code enforcement. They will likely send an inspector to check if the work was done correctly and will not create problems in years to come. Thus, attempting DIY water heater installation without a permit can be risky if you’re caught. It can lead to fines, especially when trying to sell your home in the future. There are several local and state regulations that water heaters and hot water storage tanks must comply with. Such regulations can be very complicated and require someone familiar with them.
5. Insurance and Warranty Issues
If you install a water heater by yourself and it explodes and causes damage to your property, you may have issues with your insurance company. If an unlicensed plumber also installed the water heater, there is a high chance that your home insurance will refuse to take liability for the damage caused by the heater to your home. Keep in mind that paying out of your pocket can be costly if the damage created is huge. Additionally, many water heaters have a warranty that only applies if a licensed professional does the installation. More often than not, warranty registration will require you to provide the license number of the particular plumber involved in the installation.
The Bottom Line
DIY water heater installation may sound like an excellent way to save yourself some cash, but the potential dangers involved do not make the task worthwhile. DIY installation may put you and your family at risk and potentially damage your property. You should hire a licensed plumber to handle the installation to ensure everything goes smoothly. Besides, a professional plumber has the necessary equipment and will test the water heater to ensure it operates optimally.
Rely on the Professionals
Are you a resident of Tucson or the surrounding areas? Are you looking for professional plumbers to install your water heater? At Cal’s Plumbing, we have a team of licensed plumbers dedicated to installing your water heater efficiently. Additionally, you can rely on us if you need water treatment, drain, and plumbing services. Call us at Cal’s Plumbing and schedule an appointment with us today.