Gas Water Heater Locations

Had a clietn yesterday ask about restrictions on gas water heater usage. Their particualr house model is the only one in the new development that has electric water heaters. The house has gas service. They apparently asked to have the gas water heater and were told by the builder that they could not in their model.

I looked through my code books and cannot find a reason that seems to support this. The installation is a single story home, water heater tank in a garage closet. I cannot see a difference in this model from the other similar models that had a gas unit in the similar garage closet (closet was properly ventilated, etc.) Anyone know of a limitation that would apply in this type of situation?

The builder probably did not run gas lines to the area of the water heater. Often we find homes that are “stubbed out” with gas lines that are capped off in the areas where one might use either gas or electricity (stoves, water heaters, and clothes dryers and sometimes a gas line in the fireplace). If you did not see a gas stub out inside this utility closet that would be my best “guess”. I had a contractor tell a customer he really did not need the ridge vents (the vents were blocked off by the roofing felt) because the house had soffit vents. I talked to the contractor and told him “Cmon, you didn’t really say that did you?” He got embarrassed and had one of his guys go up and cut out the felt. Some times you just have to raise the BS flag.

In this case these are new construction. Every other home in the development I have seen has a gas water heater. Again the homeowner said that this was the only model being built that did not have a gas water heater - for some unexplained “code” reason according to the builder.

While I certainly agree about laziness and sometimes dumb reasons for contractors or builders not to do stuff, it seems that this would cause more problems for them than just having everything be the same. I just cannot figure out what the issue would be.

Have you called the builder for an explanation? Who’s the builder? I’ll call him…:slight_smile:

The code does not allow a gas appliance (source of ignition) to be installed in a garage unless the source of ignition is elevated 18" above the garage floor.
This is due to flammable vapors (gasoline) traveling along the floor.


Yes, Russell, I know that. As I said, I can see no code type reasons that this new construction could not have had a gas unit. Around here they do all new construction that way, regardless of appliance type.


I had not thought about that, I rather doubt that the builder would be very interested in talking to me. I have been forced to be rather critical of several major aspects of their construction at multiple homes in the last month, which have left much to be desired.

Aha! Well then, they are just playing head games with you.