Water heater installation tips

The Tank Water heater installation tips

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  • #5441
    les
    Participant

    Hi,

    My 26-yr old gas Rheem is finally ready to retire — I have a slow leak. I am an ambitious DIYer hoping to do the replacement myself. I have read a ton on this site and elsewhere about what to do, but am curious what I may *not* know.

    Any important tips/techniques to follow that aren’t covered in the installation manual or the Shop of Horrors?

    Thanks in advance,

    Lester

    #5442
    Randy Schuyler
    Keymaster

    Sorry to do this to you, Les, but I’m going to respectfully decline. There is no way to see your water heater setup or judge your skills. I don’t want to encourage you in something that might harm your water heater, your house or you. However, if some of the others who post answers here wish to respond, they are welcome.

    Randy Schuyler

    #5443
    les
    Participant

    Fair enough, so let me ask a more specific question….

    I read on this site that you use 7 wraps of teflon tape on pipe threads. My plumber friend is recommending only 3 wraps but also to use pipe dope on top of the teflon. Does mixing the two products make the seal twice as good? 😉

    Thanks for any advice,
    Lester

    #5444
    Randy Schuyler
    Keymaster

    To tell you the truth, I’m not sure what effect mixing tape and dope will have. But the anodes we’ve had the most trouble removing were installed with pipe dope. It seems to turn into glue with age.

    My friend Larry Weingarten, who pioneered water heater maintenance, says six wraps of Teflon are enough. On the other hand, somewhere lower in The Tank is an entry from someone who used three wraps, I think on an anode. Water was seeping out of the anode port.

    Randy Schuyler

    #5446
    Larry Weingarten
    Participant

    Hello: I cannot, in a few sentences teach someone how to install a heater, but I can talk about teflon tape. The stuff comes in different thicknesses. Companies like “Mill Rose” make wonderful, thick teflon in various grades. Three wraps of their teflon is plenty. Most suppliers however, sell thin stuff, which needs more turns to give a good seal. Mixing tape and dope is touted by some as the way to go, but my 30+ years experience is that teflon is fine given enough is put on.

    Might I suggest you put in the heater and then get a critique by someone you trust to know about such things?

    Yours, Larry

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