Hot water heater question

I inspected a relatively new condo with the hot water tpr valve drain pipe routed up through the ceiling?!? Is this a new exception to the code in Georgia?

TPV valve drain routed upwards0001.JPG

No it’s just plain old wrong



As Gerry said, it’s wrong. However, it it cannot be easily plumbed to the exterior and within six-inches of grade, it should be removed and a Watts 210 gas shut-off valve installed, which serves the same purpose. If this is done, the plumber should confirm that there is a pressure relief valve elsewhere on the system. PS That’s my understanding, but I’m not a plumber.


If I am not mistaken arn’t the Watts 210 Value for Gas Water Heaters?

The one shown is Electric…is it not?

P2803.6.1 ( quoting only the last portion ) The discharge pipe shall be installed so as to drain by gravity flow and shall terminate atmospherically not more than 6 inches above the floor.

And no.
The Watts 210 gas shut-off valve does not serve the same purpose as the TPR valve, which is why, as you did note, a pressure relief valve still needs to be installed. However, a temperature relief valve also needs to be installed, so why not just make it a TPR valve?

Unfortunately, every time I find a W210, I find that there is no TPR valve. I quite often have to print out the W210 instructions from the Watts site to give to my Clients to give to the plumber who says that only a W210 is needed.

All the W210 does is shut off the gas, with the theory being that if there is no gas, then there can be no flame to make the temperature go higher and higher, so the water will start cooling down. However, it does not cool down instantaneously, which is why the TPR valve is also needed.

There’s a reason why one is called a “shut-off” valve and the other is called a “relief” or “release” valve. They are inherently different and need to be married in order to work together.

Why would you heat hot water? :smiley:

Because it is inherently more efficient.

For example, cold water comes into my place at about 68°F. When it hits my hot water heater, it causes the thermostat to come on and heat the cold water to about 120°F.

However, if the temperature of the water in my tank hot water heater falls below 115°F, then the thermostat comes on and heats that 115°F hot water back up to 120°F. So you are, indeed, heating hot water quite often. In fact, you’d find that you heat hot water far more often than you heat cold water.

I can use a mere one gallon of hot water at the kitchen sink and cause the hot water heater to start up. This is why hot water heaters with tanks are so inefficient and why tankless water heaters are making significant inroads into the hot water heating industry. Once everyone has been converted to tankless water heaters, then we truly won’t have hot water heaters anymore, just water heaters. Until then, either “water heater” or “hot water heater” is correct.

Actually Russ, in areas where the Watts 210 valve is allowed, a pressure relief valve (not a TPR valve) is required in conjunction with the Watts 210.

Paul, you are correct. The Watts 210 works on the gas supply only, and they are not made for electric water heaters.

The picture above is just wrong, plain and simple.

True. Thanks for clarifying my post.

I should have stated that the temperature of the water can still continue rising some after the gas has been shut off due to the heat of the metal, so common sense would seem to say that a temperature relief valve should be installed along with the pressure release valve. Therefore, why not just install a TPR valve?

You guys are killing me. Here in Illinois, items which in your opinion are “unsafe” or “not functioning” are required to be reported-on using the phrase, “SIGNIFICANTLY DEFICIENT.” I’m thinking about going to our State’s Home Inspector Advisory Board to suggest that we replace that language in our reports with “JUST PLAIN WRONG.”

I’m actually not kidding…consider what we come-across in the field. Many times, we find items that are…strange…questionable…could be done better…marginal, etc. On occasion, we obviously find totally unsafe or other obviously fubared items. For such occasions, don’t you think “JUST PLAIN WRONG” carries more impact than “Significantly Deficient?”


There could be a whole new set of categories:

Just plain wrong.
Just plain dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
A fire waiting to happen.
Ingenious but unsafe.


Actually, in GA the TPR drain can go up. A thermal expansion device must be installed on the cold water side and there must be a provision for a low point drain to drain the trapped portion of the discharge pipe.
Ga St Amendment to the SPC 504

I would like to see how that is worded. Can you quote the reference here?


I do not believe that a “TRAP” is ever allowed in the TPR drain line as listed clearly by the IRC.

Well, I found the amendment. I guess I need to get up to speed on Georgia’s amendments:



*Delete Section 504.6.1 and substitute the following:

**504.6.1 Discharge.
**The relief valve shall discharge full size to a safe place of disposal such as a concrete floor, outside the building, an indirect waste receptor, or other approved location. The discharge shall terminate in a manner that does not cause injury to occupants in the immediate area or structural damage to the building. The discharge pipe shall not be trapped. When the relief valve discharge piping goes upward a thermal expansion control device shall be installed on the cold water distribution or service pipe in accordance with Section 607.3.2 (GA.

Ga Standard Plumbing Code (International Plumbing Code) Amendments 2002

Amendments). Provisions shall be made at the low point to drain the trapped portion of the discharge pipe.
(Effective January 1, 2002)

Learning more every day.



Maybe it was a Georgia plumber who did the home I inspected a couple of months ago that looked just like that in the picture. You guys should look at the above site to understand both watts 210 and Pressure Relief Valves are installed so as to not interfere with the fuction of both Valves. STEVE;-)


This is a 9 year old thread.