Legs or no legs?


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Old 12-22-14, 06:58 AM
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Question Legs or no legs?

Our gas water heater is leaking. It's easily old enough, so time to replace it.

Every water heater I've ever had has always had short legs under it to raise it 2-3 inches off the floor. Looking at Home Depot's site, it looks like the Rheem units they sell all come with no legs and sit directly on the floor, as with the Richmond units I see at Menards. The Whirlpool heaters I see at Lowe's show the legs I'm familiar with.

Do they sell a separate leg kit, or just don't bother to show the legs in the catalog photos? Or is it okay to put a water tank directly on the floor? How do they get combustion air? Don't most get at least some air through the bottom of the tank?

Ours is on a cement floor.

What say ye?

M.
 
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Old 12-22-14, 07:29 AM
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The traditional gas heaters I've seen all have the little feet while electric ones do not. The only gas ones I've seen without legs are the forced draft type. With whatever type you choose you should look at the installation instructions to make sure you supply the air it needs but I imagine if they sell it without legs then it's OK to install it without legs.
 
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Old 12-22-14, 07:44 AM
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Legs have been removed per Federal regulations pertaining to the combustion chamber redesign to reduce flammable vapor ignition*. (*atmospheric gas fumes being ignited by the pilot)
My two most recent purchases of water heaters in the last 6 years the heaters sit directly on floor and don't have a door to access pilot. It is ignited with a piezo sparker. (push button)
Hope this helps.

RR
 
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Old 12-22-14, 08:23 AM
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Just curious does that mean gas water heaters in garages no longer require 18" elevation by national code? (National because I know local will vary.)
 
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Old 12-22-14, 08:40 AM
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Newer water heaters are designed to sit flat on the floor. It's recommended that they sit in a pan designed for the purpose with a drain pipe attached to it. Some people will set a tank on bricks to raise it off the cellar floor in case of minor flooding.

 
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Old 12-22-14, 11:08 AM
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Thank you folks! That clarifies things for me a lot.

Reading up on the Home Depot site, I see that plastic drain pans are only used on electric tanks, so it looks like I'll be spending $20 for an aluminum one (24"). Having just seen where the water goes when it leaks I already have the best route for the drain hose.

Unless there's a serious objection, I think I'll put the tank on 1-5/8" bricks inside the pan just to keep the base drier if there's ever a leak or overflow.

It's kinda reassuring they've redesigned things to lessen the risk of vapor ignition, seeing as it's in a corner of the room I use for a shop. I'm careful about flammables anyway, but it's an extra measure of security.

Thank you for all the good assistance. Hopefully the install will go just as well.

M.
 
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Old 12-22-14, 02:39 PM
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FYI I only install AO smith heaters... Better warranty service if needed and better heaters IMO.

You can get them at your local furguson dealer...

Locations Finder

Last get a bigger pan if you can fit it.. 34"? 36"?

And yes I set the heaters up on bricks when put in a pan...

Just curious does that mean gas water heaters in garages no longer require 18" elevation by national code? (National because I know local will vary.)
Ill have to check code to see if they changed it... In NJ they still make us do it. And a loly column needs to be installed...
 
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Old 12-27-14, 10:12 AM
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Well, the new water heater is in and working.

Either by chance or by genius design, with the unit supported by 1-5/8" bricks the pre-installed nipples were exactly the right height to connect to the existing pipes! The gas connection required only stretching one nipple an inch to mate up. It was a lot easier job than I had any right to expect, I think. Only one extra trip to the store for parts.

I like the new sealed burner design, with its piezo pilot lighting gizmo and the thermopile-powered indicator LED on the controller. As long as it's durable, I'll be satisfied.

Thank you for the quick and helpful answers to my earlier questions. Here's hoping for another 10-15 years before it needs to be replaced again.

Mike
 
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Old 12-27-14, 11:57 AM
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So, did you go with Rheem or something else? Legs or legless?
 
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Old 01-06-15, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by CasualJoe
So, did you go with Rheem or something else? Legs or legless?
We bought the least expensive Rheem tall 50 gallon unit from Home Depot. Legless. Cost about $390. Set it on pieces of patio brick in an aluminum pan.

It's working fine so far after a couple of weeks... Ask me again in 10 years!

Mike
 
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Old 01-07-15, 06:39 PM
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I like legs too, but American Water Heater is the only company I am aware of that still uses them and I won't buy an American Water Heater product anymore.
 
 

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