Finishing my basement. Regardless of whether I put carpet or
engineered hardwood, I don't want the flooring to be ruined (or be a
bed for mold growth) if the water heater decides to go, which will
eventually happen (10 years old now). I've heard horror stories of
several inches of water flooding the basement when these systems
fail. My water heater and furnace are going to be in a separate
10x14' room as I finish the basement, so is there anything I can do to
mitigate the risk of ruining the flooring in the main room should the
water heater fail after the basement project is complete? I was
thinking along the lines of some caulk or sealant along the floor
plate to isolate the mechanical room somewhat - although a long enough
leak before noticing it would still rise above the floor plate and
into the adjacent room. Any ideas? How do others deal with this?
Proactively replace the water heater? Deal with the wetness and just
try to dry out wet carpets/wood flooring? Thanks
10 year old heater?? Replace it now.
And install a pan:
under it if you have a floor drain.
I would also consider some form of flood alarm
that will detect excess mositure on the floor
in the mechanical room (burst pipes, etc.).
eh, maybe not. Mine is about 18 years old and the anode when I pulled
it was probably good for another year or two, but I replaced it anyway
"while I was in there."
Or even if you don't. Better to contain the flood than have it spread
over a large floor area, if you can shut 'er down in time.
Absolutely. It is possible to tie one into a solenoid valve that will
shut off the water to the house if it detects moisture, so no more
than 50 gallons or so (assuming a 40 gal. tank and 10 gal. of water in
the pipes) could ever leak and flood your basement.
I would also consider a raised threshold in the doorway into this
room, combined with vinyl baseboard, well caulked. Thus if you do get
a full 50 gal. dump it will still be contained.
Along the same lines, anyone have any recommendations for a moisture
alarm/solenoid valve? I've got a similar issue to the OP where I do
not have a floor drain in my basement, and I've already had one
flooding incident due to a failed T&P valve. Last time I left for
more than a day I completely shut the water off, but even so, a lot of
water can dump in a day with a real catastrophic failure.
All of the kits I've seen recommend placing the solenoid valve at the
inlet to the HWH but I was thinking it would simply be safer to mount
it remotely and shut the whole house off just past the stop valve
where the line enters the house.
(my shop vac got a workout after I discovered the mess...)
Mine in furnace room next to finished family room in basement just
failed but it is next to French drain which would have taken up water
although not a flood and I do not have and do not need sump pump. Thirty
plus years in this house with probably 5 water heater failures due to
slightly acidic water but none have been catastrophic. Tray or dam with
some place for water to go is what you need. I would worry more about
I use these on water heaters, dishwashers, ice makers and washers in
my rental units:
Remember to replace the back-up batteries once a year.
Paragon Property Services Inc / Home Inspections
According to State Farm, failure of washing machine hoses is
one of the common causes of insurance claims.
Replace those rubber hoses with good quality steel braided
hoses -- inspect them regularly and replace at the first
sign of impending failure.
Consider drip pans, alarms, automatic shut-offs and more
depending upon the situation and how much damage is likely
to result from a failure and leak.
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
shutting off all the water in a home might be a bad idea.
a fire occurs, you spot it and get out the garden hose, the detector
reports leak and shuts down the garden hose when you need it the most.
isolate room with a shower pan type arrangement and solenoid valve on
heater is worthwhile idea.
If you decide to use a pan, DON'T use a plastic pan under a gas water
heater. They dry out and crack after a few years. I know, the pan
didn't last as long as my heater. Luckily I caught it when it was
only a small leak. Our area now requires a metal pan (easy to find,
about $20) now. Also might want to check the main shutoff valve now,
just in case.
On Dec 13, 9:40 pm, "Michael Thomas, Paragon Property Services,
On Thu, 13 Dec 2007 08:38:37 -0800 (PST), firstname.lastname@example.org
I have a water tank pan under the water tank. I ran a PVC pipe to
the outside and into the downspout. You could put a battery-operated
moisture alarm in the pan.
Still, it is a good idea to caulk the flooring-shoe molding interface.
This will help stop moisture and insects and make it easier to keep
the floor clean. A better option for the basement is vinyl flooring.
My gas fired tank is 30 years old & working fine.
Put a pan under the tank. There are special pans just for this at hardware
stores. They have a drain outlet in them; hopefully your tank is close to a
floor drain so you can hook up some PVC pipe from the pan to the drain.
Mine happens to be right over the drain so I don't bother with the pan. :-)
<My Whirlpool 52 gallon, 12 year guaranteed heater, failed
after 3 years, so age sometimes doesn't count.The original
Rheem copper lined tank lasted 20 years, that was installed in
the house when built 1955
I get about 6 years out of my tanks. They rust out on the bottom.
The Whirlpool that just failed, had a broken weld joint at the cold
water inlet. I'm on a municipal water system.
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