When Is A Water Heater Drain Pan Required?

When Is A Water Heater Drain Pan Required?

Water heating systems are necessary for all homes today, but as with all systems, there are risks of malfunction. For water heaters, one of the risks is the danger of water damage from the volume of water when the bottom of the tank leaks. You can take several steps to manage this risk, and the most efficient so far is installing a water heater pan or a drain pan. Over the past few years, plumbing codes have changed, including installing drain pans under water heater tanks. So, what is a drain pan? When is a drain pan required? Which is the best water heater to buy?

What Is A Drain Pan?

As mentioned above, having a water heating system also means the risk of the tank leaking, which can lead to water damage in the house. A drain pan is a simple and inexpensive solution to this problem, as it catches the dripping and leaking water from the bottom of the tank. 

  • When Is A Drain Pan Required?

The need for a drain pan depends on the location of the water heater tank. Usually, when your water heater tank is on the outside, you will not need to install a drain pan, but if it is inside, you must have one. Most people will have the water heater in the interior living space, the attic, and sometimes the garage. Many states do not require drain pans in water heater tanks installed in garages. 

  • Drain Pan Installation

According to the International Plumbing Code, a drain pan is necessary when a water tank's leakage can lead to damage. The code recommends installing the water tank in a stainless-steel pan with a thickness of at least 0.6010 mm. The pan must be sizable enough to capture all possible leaks and condensation from the water heater or the tank. The drain pipe on the water tank should have an indirect connection and be at least 19mm in diameter.  

Why Is A Drain Pan Required in The Specific Areas?

  • Water Heater Above Ground or In the Attic

Drain pans become increasingly important if the plumber installs the water tank above your ground floor. When a leak happens, and you do not have a drain pan installed, your house could incur much structural damage. The water that leaks from a much higher level will seep into the walls and through your ceiling. This could lead to diminished structural integrity or even a mold outbreak.  

  • Inside A Living Area

A drain pan is a critical mitigation option when the water heater tanks are in a living area due to a lack of out-of-the-way options. Without it, a leak can lead to property damage or damage to the tank's room. It is essential if the room contains electrical devices or outlets because they can cause an electrical hazard. You must call a plumber to maintain your water heater tank if you notice any leakage.

For more on when a water heater drain pan is necessary, visit Water Heating Direct at our office in Ft. Worth, Texas. Call (401) 552-HEAT​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ to book an appointment today.