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Thread: Water heater Removal, Up basement stairs

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Platinum824's Avatar
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    Question Water heater Removal, Up basement stairs

    Hey Everyone,

    I am trying to find out the best way to remove a water heater from a basement. I would like recommendations on what type of hand truck (dolly) would work the best. I would probably want one with stair climbing capabilities and a strap to secure the water heater. I have seen the power ones but they run $1,800 or more, that is too much. I would probably want to spend $400 max. The base would need to be large enough to support the bottom properly. Also I would like something that does not rust (water heaters usually leak water). And finally, I would like to make sure that the stair climber part does not damage say wood floors (usually top step) or any good ideas on a covering that doesnt move. If you have any recommendations or could tell me what you prefer/use that would be great. Also pictures or links would be helpful. Has anyone ever cut one out and hauled it in pieces; would you do it again? Thank you everybody for your help. I am new at posting here and will try to answer as many questions as I can on these as well.

    Thanks again,
    Brandon
    Last edited by Platinum824; 12-30-2011 at 02:51 PM.

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member Chad Schloss's Avatar
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    i had two people carry the one out of my basement. no need for a dolly. you can pay someone like a moving company or something the minimum rate they charge and have them move it for you, it will be under $400 by a long shot. more like $150. are you bringing a new one in? i kept mine in the box and slid it down the stairs, gently. worked great.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member Platinum824's Avatar
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    I am in the plumbing business. I have recently started my own company and would like to lean more toward service work. The company I previously worked for would do 99% new installation. If we had a defective heater it would be easy to drain and I always had an apprentice with me; therefor it would be easy to carry out. I have no problem bringing them inside, I do the same thing. I plan on removing many them on a regular basis and do not want to risk damage to personal property by dropping or bumping things (even with two people). I would also like to be efficient and safe. To hire movers would cost me and my customers more than I am willing to pay.

    Thank you for your reply

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    quote; Has anyone ever cut one out and hauled it in pieces; would you do it again?

    Only when someone installed a furnace or something in front of so there was no room to get it out. It is a time consuming, MESSY, job, and takes about 2 or 3 hours to do it. There are hand trucks with "slider rails" behind the wheels to take it up and down stairs, but, they still require a lot of effor to pull a water heater UP the stairs, so you should have a second person to help "lift it" up the risers. Motorized ones are "nice" but expensive and take up a lot of room in the truck.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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    DIY Junior Member Platinum824's Avatar
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    I always assume that if it has been blocked in (I see them framed in alot) that you should just remove the obstacle due to the fact that you will need to install a new one anyway. Unless they are getting a tankless or something. Thank you for your help. I am still open to more suggestions.

  6. #6
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Cool what a bunch of total wimps

    you can buy a refregerator truck for about 190.. with the straps
    and the ratchet , also it has the brakes at the bottom... the ones
    we have are rated for 800 lbs..

    as far as the unit dripping, you put a towell on the bottom plate
    then set the heater on top of the towell, it works like a diaper...
    but you cant fool around all day getting it u p the stairs

    we carry out an average of 3 a day....it keeps you in shape.

    you guys are all a bunch of wimps

  7. #7
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    you guys are all a bunch of wimps
    LOL
    I was in a rental once where the old HWT was so heavy from lime scale that they just left it where it stood and ran the pipes over to the new one. The old one was the kind with the three cast iron legs. My son was playing in the basement and managed to tip it over by climbing up on it. It was a miracle he wasn't killed.

    I asked the landlord to take it away and he sent over two real big guys to carry it out of the basement. I was worried that the weight of the tank and the two burly guys would break the stairs. Those guys weren't wimps.

  8. #8
    In the Trades Jerome2877's Avatar
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    I like to use the bag that comes with the new water heater, I pull it under the bottom carefully so its sitting in it then take it out. Havn't had one leak yet.

  9. #9
    In the Trades Jerome2877's Avatar
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    LOL
    I was in a rental once where the old HWT was so heavy from lime scale that they just left it where it stood and ran the pipes over to the new one. The old one was the kind with the three cast iron legs. My son was playing in the basement and managed to tip it over by climbing up on it. It was a miracle he wasn't killed.

    I asked the landlord to take it away and he sent over two real big guys to carry it out of the basement. I was worried that the weight of the tank and the two burly guys would break the stairs. Those guys weren't wimps.
    You sure it wasn't copper or brass, you could have got a couple friends to help you and cashed it in for beer!

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member Platinum824's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses everyone. I think your advice will work great. I will probably get the refridgerator cart. The water heaters I usually install are "State" they do not have bags. I will probably start a post or look into other posts about water heater brands at a later time.

    Thanks again,

    Brandon

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