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  1. #1
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Water heater in a garage, protection

    I had a realtor call me about a water heater being protected in a garage.


    In plain English (US English) what if any protection should a water heater have in a garage that is already 18 inches off of the floor from vehicles damaging them?

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Philadelphia PA
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    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    I had a realtor call me about a water heater being protected in a garage.


    In plain English (US English) what if any protection should a water heater have in a garage that is already 18 inches off of the floor from vehicles damaging them?
    A steel post like the ones you see (or maybe you don't, but they're all over around here) protecting gas meters outside.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Ted, here is a diagram that I stole here.
    I just talked to McKinney Building Official about this and he said they look at it on a case by case basis and the protection could be an alcove, curb, etc. It is left to the judgment of the individual inspector.

    That part of the code is not very high on their priority list, IMO, judging by what I see in all the new construction around here.

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    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  4. #4
    David Banks's Avatar
    David Banks Guest

    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Called a "Bollard"


  5. #5
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    Ted, here is a diagram that I stole here.
    I just talked to McKinney Building Official about this and he said they look at it on a case by case basis and the protection could be an alcove, curb, etc. It is left to the judgment of the individual inspector.

    That part of the code is not very high on their priority list, IMO, judging by what I see in all the new construction around here.
    This is another one of those things around here where you never see it. This is the second call I have received about this from a couple different realtors that refer me but had a listing sell and the same inspector wrote it up. I only know one inspector around here that writes it up. There is not a city around here where the building inspector calls for it.

    I had to agree with the other inspector about some protection needed. It (they) were 18 inches off of the floor and a small curb. I guess I will have to be honest here (I hate myself sometime) I do not write them up if in *MY* opinion they have enough protection. If there is no curb in the garage I do write them up. If the step up is real short I write them up.

    In these cases *MY* opinion says they were not necessary to write up. Step up (curb) and relatively deep.

    Thanks Jim


  6. #6
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    Healdsburg, CA
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    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    I recall we had a discussion on "bollards" a while ago. Check the archives as I'll bet it's there.

    Jerry McCarthy
    Building Code/ Construction Consultant

  7. #7
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Another choice, the preferred choice in most of South Florida, is to build a masonry block cube platform, 2 feet square by 2 feet high (3 courses) and fill it full of concrete, then set the water heater on it. It is anchored to the slab with rebar to resist lateral movement.

    That raises it higher than the bumper of about anything which will fit in the garage and is much stronger than most bollards you will see.

    If you hit that thing and manage to push it far enough to topple the water heater, you've got a lot more problems than just the water heater. It is like hitting a 2 foot thick concrete wall (because that's what it effectively is).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    It's funny how things vary by area.... here in Oregon we always have bollards in garages in front of furnaces and water heaters but I don't think I've ever seen one outdoors in front of an electric or gas meter.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    4,519

    Default Re: Water heater in a garage, protection

    Matt,

    Here in Texas we have no bollards in front of water heaters in the garage and we place the gas meters near the street or alley ways so that drivers can easily hit them.

    As far as the meters, it all about convenience of the meter reader to drive down the alley and read the meter from the front seat of the truck.

    My neighbor has backed out and hit her gas meter 3 times in the last 2 yrs.

    The gas company keeps coming out and replacing it or straightening it up.


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