You probably don't give your water heater much thought until there's no hot water or a leak, but a plumber in Dallas made an excellent point last week about where the water heater is physically located in the home.
New home builders charge by the square foot, so they don't like to put water heaters
in living spaces. Instead, they prefer to add them in the garage, which is fine, or the attic, which may not be so fine.
A local plumbers union in Texas has actually lobbied for a new state law that makes it illegal for builders to install water heaters in the attic. The proposal didn't make it out of committee last session, but Sonny Friedman, owner of Atlas Plumbing
in Dallas, and one of the plumbers behind the idea, says they'll try again this year.
Sonny admits there's some selfish reasons behind the effort - like the fact that it takes two to three plumbers to take a water heater upstairs, job takes longer, etc.
But it's also more costly for the homeowner. Because the job takes longer and requires more labor, the cost of replacing a water heater increases for the customer. Not to mention the costs if the water heater ever leaks. Fifty gallons of water can get everything wet real fast.
So I'm just curious how many of you have actually thought about where your water heater is located. If you're building a new home, ask your builder where they plan to install it. If it's the attic, you might want to consider an alternative location.
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