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what kind of electric outlet do I need for a new pilotless gas water heater ?

what kind of electric outlet do I need for a new pilotless gas water heater ?

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  #1  
Old 05-24-13, 11:02 PM
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what kind of electric outlet do I need for a new pilotless gas water heater ?

Wow, I've been googling and searching forums for a couple hours now. Cannot get any information. Even Sears cannot answer.
I am adding a new 20 amp circuit to the garage and am wondering about electricity requirements for a new pilotless natural gas water heater. 40 gallon tank. My WH is 5 years beyond its warranty.

I'll be doing the wiring on Monday.

The garage door opener, chest freezer, lights and maybe woodworking tools may be used on the circuit.
The building inspecdtor will be checking so I need to know if there are code requirements.

Please, can someone give me some information?
thanks, gail
 
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  #2  
Old 05-25-13, 03:48 AM
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Edit: Well I wrote this post at 4am. Wider awake now I must ask why do you need to add a new 20 amp circuit if you already have power. I can't imagine needing much power for the igniter on a water heater. Why do you think you need a new circuit if, as it seems you already have power.

If it is an attached garage you just need to run 12-2 NM-b (AKA Romex) from a new 20 amp breaker. Receptacles need to be GFCI protected. That can be done by using a GFCI breaker or using a GFCI receptacle for the first receptacle and running the rest off the load side.

If it is a detached garage and it already has power you are going to have to replace the existing power with either a multiwire circuit or a subpanel using 3-conductor UF direct burial cable or conduit containing 4 conductors.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 05-25-13 at 10:45 AM.
  #3  
Old 05-25-13, 08:34 AM
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The garage door opener, chest freezer, lights and maybe woodworking tools may be used on the circuit.
How are the garage door opener, chest freezer and lights getting power now? Ray outlined the most important questions, is it an attached or detached garage?
 
  #4  
Old 05-25-13, 10:48 AM
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Gail it was 4am when I wrote the first reply. I have edited it now that I am fully awake. If you read it earlier reread.
 
  #5  
Old 05-25-13, 01:21 PM
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Attached garage, shares wall with the kitchen so very easy to poke thru the wall.

No outlet near the WH except for the two dedicated circuits at W/D. I considered putting w/d on one circuit with an A/B switch but I don't know if that's code. Code says two circuits dedicated.

The building inspector will be picky about any new stuff. I have been dealing with him for 5 years and I always tell him to be very picky, as I want it all to be correct and safe. I go to the library and read code, I've caught things he didn't notice or he said not in the permit. And I corrected them anyway.

The garage chest freezer is on the same circuit as the kitchen refrigerator+microwave oven+toaster oven+electric tea kettle+iron for ironing clothes in a different room. Codes says if kitchen the circuit can only go to the kitchen. I am not going to follow that rule but I will remove as much as I can from the circuit.
Refrigerators are supposed to be on a circuit by themselves, hence the new line for that. If I let Edison give me the free refrigerator they will bring it up to code.
The garage door opener is on a long extension cord to the outlet for the washing machine. Code doesn't allow for extension cords, nor that distandce. For shop and gardening tools I have to unplug the washer or dryer and plug in there, usually the freezer outlet is easier to get to so I sometimes use that. If someone else is in the house a lot of breakers might trip if they want to eat while I'm using the socket.

I only have 3 remaining spots in the circuit breaker box, the a/c took two recently or I wouldn't have the dilemma.l

A lot of the conduit is already in place or at least the hook/straps. I'll have an electrician connect to the panel-and check all my work.

I just wanted to know if I need to have a special outlet for the WH. There is electricity there for the switch and outside light a couple inches away. I don't know what circuit that is on or the amperage. That, we hope, will be determined Monday. Porch light hasn't worked since the termite guys maybe stepped on it and broke it.

I have the correct wires etc.


"or using a GFCI receptacle for the first receptacle" I just read that a few days ago. So I plan to put a GFCI receptacle just inside the wall from the circuit breaker then the whole garage circuit additions will be protected.

I'll investigate the whole house gfci, but that won't protect if a ground wire fails--or is that wrong?
We have to use a little copper bead thingey that compresses so the ground wire cannot detatch from switches.
 

Last edited by PJmax; 05-25-13 at 02:42 PM. Reason: removed incorrect link
  #6  
Old 05-25-13, 01:30 PM
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gail....why did you put a link in your post back to the same thread ?

Your new pilot-less water heater will require a standard wall receptacle. It may use several amps of power to run the ignition stages and maybe the power vent depending on model selected. As it's in the garage....it will be on a GFI

That would be a whole circuit GFI.....not a whole house one. If you lose the ground in your GFI loop you are still protected by the GFI itself.
 
  #7  
Old 05-25-13, 02:39 PM
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If it did that, it did it by itself, I don't even know what that means, I cannot figure out these links etc.
easy to put GFI there. I will move the outside light onto it too.,
 
  #8  
Old 05-25-13, 03:31 PM
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I will move the outside light onto it too.
If you want to put the outside light, or any other light, on this circuit, I suggest that you feed those from the second slot on the LINE terminals on the GFCI receptacle. Feed any other standard receptacles that you're adding by connecting the wires for those to the LOAD terminals.

Refrigerators are supposed to be on a circuit by themselves
Really?

The garage door opener is on a long extension cord to the outlet for the washing machine. Code doesn't allow for extension cords, nor that distandce.
Right. The receptacle for that needs GFCI protection, so this is an opportunity to take care of that.

I only have 3 remaining spots in the circuit breaker box, the a/c took two recently or I wouldn't have the dilemma.
Does your panel allow tandem breakers? Do you have any of those now?

I'll investigate the whole house gfci, but that won't protect if a ground wire fails--or is that wrong? We have to use a little copper bead thingey that compresses so the ground wire cannot detatch from switches.
I'll guess, along with PJ, that you're talking about using a GFCI breaker instead of a GFCI receptacle to provide the protection. You can do that but, if you do, the whole circuit will be GFCI protected, including any lights.

GFCI protection is different from the protection afforded by an equipment grounding conductor, aka a ground wire. Both are primarily intended to protect us from shock, but only the ground wire provides a path to ground for attached appliances.

Adding GFCI protection at the beginning of a string of receptacles actually allows the remaining receptacles on that circuit to be 3-slot receptacles, under the code.
 
  #9  
Old 05-25-13, 11:02 PM
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California code says refrigerator needs a dedicated line. Since they use less electricity than they used to.-- seems odd. House was built '73 before that code change so I'm grandfathered in. I have blown the circuit a few times while cooking when I am tired and forget.

The range hood is supposed to have its own circuit too. But don't tell anybody the builder put it on one of the washer/dryer circuits. I put the GDO on one but haven't been caught..yet

Washer and dryer require two dedicated circuits. Gas dryer.
built in microwave oven requites its own circuit but not a table top one. Go figure.
any circuit servicing a kitchen can only service a kitchen. Mine go all over the house.
Obviously a/c, furnace , and stove require their own.
They don't like you to mix outlets and lights on a circuit. so the lighting circuits are very underutilized since going to fluorescent and led.

I have always wanted outlets on the family room side of the kitchen island. I hope the fam room side is still considered kitchen. I'm adding some higher outlets, its getting harder to bend over to plug in the vacuum.

My neighbor is remodeling her house, to say the least! They are replacing all the wiring and using copper instead of copper clad aluminum. tore out plumbing, almost everyone around here has been flooded by bursting pipes at least once. They took out all the drywall to do this from the inside.

About the Gfi, I just bought some the other day and had read the insert.
Decided to let the electrician do those.

I think the ones for the whole circuit are bigger, the breaker bigger. I have skinny breakers.


Not sure what a tandem breaker is unless like for the a/c it takes two slots, same for stove and furnace.

I found some deeper elec boxes yesterday solving the problem of too much stuff in a box. I have to pigtail copper most of the time because that *&^%$$ aluminum wire has gotten brittle and doesn't bend like it used to. It breaks off. I opened one the other day and the wires kinda jumped out. Been in there since '73 and never let out. They want out. And if I pigtail copper they wont' go back in. I asked at the hardware store yesterday if they had some oversized boxes. And they did. I could always go 2 gang instead of 1 gang and use a thingey for the extra hole. Mess up my wallpaper.
 
  #10  
Old 05-25-13, 11:44 PM
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I have always wanted outlets on the family room side of the kitchen island. I hope the fam room side is still considered kitchen.
Hey, it's the kitchen island. Seriously.

About the Gfi, I just bought some the other day and had read the insert.
Decided to let the electrician do those.
Why? They're easier than a regular receptacle to wire.

My neighbor is remodeling her house, to say the least! They are replacing all the wiring and using copper instead of copper clad aluminum... I have to pigtail copper most of the time because that *&^%$$ aluminum wire has gotten brittle and doesn't bend like it used to.
Hmmmm... Just out of curiosity, what are you using to connect the copper wires to the aluminum ones?
 

Last edited by Nashkat1; 05-26-13 at 12:11 AM.
  #11  
Old 05-26-13, 09:46 AM
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My neighbor is remodeling her house, to say the least! They are replacing all the wiring and using copper instead of copper clad aluminum
This is one of the most important issues to address if you have aluminum wiring. The best solution would be to replace it with copper.
 
  #12  
Old 05-26-13, 11:26 AM
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"Hmmmm... Just out of curiosity, what are you using to connect the copper wires to the aluminum ones?"

The book said to twist them and put the wire nut thing on them. I make sure bare wire is not extending out from the nut. I also wrap it with electrical tape. For the ground (I assume it is really all copper)we have to use a
copper crimp sleeve connector--new code after house was built. Every connection. I think they found the ground wires were disconnecting. Electrician advised me of this, inspector agreed. I could not find it in the code. I only buy the wire intended for 20 amp circuits.


No aluminum wires, only copper clad aluminum. I somtimes call it aluminum (with a sneer) since it is mostly aluminum. No problem except for it breaking so easily now that it is old.

Just talked to a friend's husband who knows a lot of stuff. My #1 trustworthy person.
Pilotless ignition is for some special case and not for me. So I do not need electricity for the water heater. No wonder the people I checked with at the hardware store and Sears were at a loss. I was doing this based on information from a 'know it all' firend. Bummer.

They do make piotless wh but not advisable for a 'normal' garage here. So I will have one pilot light in the house and still in the worst place, the garage where the car could leak gas. It did once before.
I was looking into putting WH on a higher pedistal but it would need a short tank. Currently it is 19", better than code requires.
 
  #13  
Old 05-26-13, 11:34 AM
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Thank you for your help. I think I will add a GFI to the garage line at the beginning especially since I need an outlet a few inches from the circuit breaker for hedge timming. This should be enough for the whole line. As for the new circuit to the kitchen wall and island I'll put one at the first outlet to cover the line. I already bought them for the bathrooms but both bathrooms use the same circuit so I'll put it in the first bathroom only. The hair dryer has its own. For the refrigerator I'm planning a surge suppressor and maybe a UPS. Although it hasn't happened recently the power company could have another brown out, one I heard of destroyed refrigerators. Need to check on line conditioners vs UPS> Lots of momentary power failures here in the tract they reset lots of appliances each time. Have ups on the computer line.
 
  #14  
Old 05-28-13, 12:49 AM
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My last post got removed or didn't make it. Ok, talked with a respected friend who said about the pilotless gas water heater essentially that we don't do that.
So I'll get one with a pilto so no electric concerns.

Thanks for your help
gail
 
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