Multi story water heater pressure relief question

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Bestdogever

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I am in a multi story condo building in Bellevue built circa 1967. Insurance has decided that all water heater relief lines need to be piped outside the building(currently none are) Can these be tied together into one line three at a time, or do they all need to have individual relief lines?
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Jeff H Young

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There are a lot of details to this and being a 50 plus year old building may give some discretion with building department. No idea if you are going at this with permits or just trying to find workable solution and get insurance co of your back? Example they might allow you to tie 3 waterheaters together with a 1 1/2 copper drainline extending down and out side building 6 to 18 inches above ground. Probably would want to insure that the T&P from each heater entered this drain through an airgap of sorts.
Also No mention from insurance company regarding a drain pan at each unit ?
 

Terry

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The city of Bellevue only required a 125 PSI relief on the incoming cold water in the early days. There was no requirement for a T&P on the water heater until they got a new head inspector. I thought it was the dumbest thing in the world and I had my losing argument with the inspector back then. I was building four homes in Bellevue, and did the 125 PSI on the cold and also did the standard T&P on the water heater. There were plenty of homes in Bellevue though during that time that never did get the right solution for the water heater T&P's. Some were not anywhere near an outside wall and draining was going to be a future problem.
I have worked on condos in Seattle that allowed combined reliefs on a stack, but that was a while ago. I would check with your local head inspector and ask what they allow.

sd-crossroads-02.jpg


My blue pickup truck, 1984 was the year.
NE 6th Street in Bellevue near Crossroads.
 
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Jeff H Young

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The city of Bellevue only required a 125 PSI relief on the incoming cold water in the early days. There was no requirement for a T&P on the water heater until they got a new head inspector. I thought it was the dumbest thing in the world and I had my losing argument with the inspector back then. I was building four home in Bellevue, and did the 125 PSI on the cold and also did the standard T&P on the water heater. There were plenty of homes in Bellevue though during that time that never did get the right solution for the water heater T&P's. Some were not anywhere near an outside wall and draining was going to be a future problem.
I have worked on condos in Seattle that allowed combined reliefs on a stack, but that was a while ago. I would check with your local head inspector and ask what they allow.


My blue pickup truck, 1984 was the year.

Yep that's how I'd handle it as well as Terry said. We used watts 210 valve on gas water heaters that couldn't get a T&P drain out as well
 

Terry

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Reach4

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So a common indirect drain could be run by each water heater, with each T&P valve discharging into it via an air gap?
That would satisfy code, but would it satisfy the insurance company? I suspect not.
 

Tuttles Revenge

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So a common indirect drain could be run by each water heater, with each T&P valve discharging into it via an air gap?

Yes so long as that indirect drain were plumbed properly. I would think that a common drain could be made that way. But unless it were plumbed to the sanitary it would never fly in Bellevue.

Perhaps if someone had an engineer design a system where each relief were piped to a local indirect drain that combined to a common stack to the exterior they could work that through the "alternate" provision of the code. Just a long shot in Bellevue.

.
 

Bestdogever

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Thanks for all of the great input.
Not planning to involve the city at this juncture. As they stand all of the water heaters have no pans no relief lines and all are plumbed only with half inch pipe so anything we do will be an improvement. I have no idea how this thing ever got past an inspector to begin with. This is a 30 unit three story building. I did see a similar building in Seattle that had all the units connected to a single stacked 3/4 non air gapped line.
 
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Tuttles Revenge

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IF... IF I were to plumb all the lines together, they certainly wouldn't be into One single 3/4" discharge.

Lots of condos we work in have clauses for water heaters that they all must be plumbed with pans, alarms and flood stops and some go so far as to stipulate that they must be replaced on or before their warranty expires so we have to register the installation date and the warranty period SN with the board.

I once was selected for jury duty on a case involving a leaky water heater in a condo.. I got booted from the jury pool likely because I knew too much about plumbing.

Its hard to say back then. Bit before my time, but I suspect there was a Boom in construction and it was like the wild west with things not getting full scrutiny. I'm certain we will see the same from the housing boom and bust of 08/09.
 
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