Bonding, electric water heater

recently inspected an electric hot water heater. There was no bonding cable between the cold supply and the hot water side. I’ve always believed this to be a requirement, however checking the Nachi courses (electrical and plumbing) it is only mentioned in passing (one diagram). Is this a code/safety defect. Other problems with the water heater require correction so this is not the only issue. Guidance please.

It is not required in my area.

Thank you for the response. I was not sure of the requirement, always did this on new installations when working as a plumber in DC. Will not call it out. Again thanks.

Could it be you saw the Gas feed line bonded to the copper .
See Picture of How mine is done … Roy

Hi Roy, No this was on electric water heaters. I was told it had to do with potential failure of the elements. Going back 25 years so the mind may not recall all the details. Now that I think about it, the DC area had a lot of old ferrous pipe and dielectric unions on new water heater with copper installations. New water heaters here in Fl also have an electric break on the cold side.

I think he meant to say bonding from the gas line to water line.:smiley:

No, this is not a gas house, and I am aware of that requirement. Just wasn’t sure on this because of past experience.

The only bonding I ever see that on a WH is the electrical bond going to the panel. Most are done when both exist in the garage.

I have never seen a cold to hot bond. I would think since they are both conected at the tank it shouldn’t matter.

Of course I still can’t figure out why they want you to ground a gas meter when the gas line is buried to begin with.

The bonding has nothing to do with the water heater, and when it is required, it doesn’t matter whether the water heater is gas or electric.

The bonding connection is typically made at the hot-water side of the piping to ensure continuity of the required bonding for metallic piping within the structure.

Occasionally you might see a “jumper” from the cold side to the hot side of the water heater, and you may even see a jumper to the gas piping.

Most jurisdictions and Model Codes require bonding of metallic water piping and metallic gas piping, to the grounding electrode of the electrical system. Some jurisdictions, however, PROHIBIT bonding of the gas piping to the GE.

In any event, as others have implied, you should check your local AHJ to determine if they require a bonding connection at the water heater.

If there is a dielectric union on the water heater piping a bonding jumper from the cold to the hot water lines should be installed. You cant assume fixtures in the house have metal mixing valves to connect the hot and cold water lines.

JMO & 2-Nickels … :wink:

Hey Sean… that would be the Tracer wire, not a grounding wire! ;-):wink: