Plumber says up to code before he installs water heater

cassie225February 24, 2012

Please all plumbers help because this sounds like a crock. We have AHS-trying to get DH to drop them cause they are not worth it-Our water heater has a leak and it is draining from the pipe out out back door. AHS will give us 400 for the water heater,but the plumber they sent out says it has to come up to code before they install to the cost of 700 extra dollars. First he said $300, went to his truck and came back with 700 dollar figure. He says we need Code upgrades- Dielectric Unions $45,3/4 porter ball valve-$50,run new 1" pan drain line 20ft-$225(the one we have is 3/4"),Electrical quick disconnect-$155,Permit and inspection fees-$180( he said the inspector might drive by my house while they are working and they will get fined ,mandatory disposal fees $45.Help me know the truth. Water heater in the attic. We have 2 and this is my electric one. Is this just a bunch of bull??

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First and foremost - DUMP AHS. You can Google AHS and see the host of complaints - don't be another victim. Get yourself a REPUTABLE plumber and see what he / she says.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 7:16PM
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Interesting how $300 worth of xtra work (originally) + $400 from AHS just happens to equal your final price, isn't it ???

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 5:15PM
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Obviously your local jurisdiction requires pulling a permit to change the water heater, (That requirement is rapidly becoming the norm everywhere).

All the additional items noted by the plumber are basic code requirements and your installation must meet the code that is in force at the time of the installation so I see nothing unusual about the bid.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 5:56PM
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actually, it is not obvious to me that a permit is required to replace the heater. But the guy quoting the price is certainly threatening that it is needed.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 7:34PM
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In my community if you get caught changing a water heater without a permit you get a $1000 fine and you still have to pull a permit and get the installation inspected.

If you set the old water heater at the curb for trash pickup you have to write the permit number on the tank with a magic marker or the city trash collectors will turn the address in to code enforcement and they will come check to see if you installed a new tank...

Personally, I wouldn't risk it.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 8:06PM
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Where I am this is not true. A homeowner may replace an electric unit in the same fashion (and size) as it was originally installed with out a permit. Gas, I believe, is different.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 6:56PM
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Whether or not you require a permit is stictly up to the AHJ and under the national model codes the drip pan drain line is required to be a minimum of 3/4", however all the other upgrades that the plumber specified have been code since the early 80's.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 9:16PM
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Then we should be up to code. The other plumbers I had do an estimate just kinda chuckled when I told them what the AHS plumber said we needed. But to replace that heater with anew 40 gallon is about the price quoted. But do I trust him now-NO!!!

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 6:54AM
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