Taking A Look At Frequent Mistakes Homeowners Make During DIY Water Heater Installation
If there is one appliance in your home that will cause you a great headache when it goes bad, it is definitely the hot water heater. Without hot water, even the most basic aspects of civilized life, like cleaning and taking showers, will be more difficult to achieve. It is not surprising that if you find yourself with a need for a new water heater, you will be will to tackle the task of installing a new one on your own if you have to just to get your hot water back.
Unfortunately, little experience with hot water heaters and their installation can get you into some trouble. Here are a few of the biggest mistakes homeowners tend to make when they install a new hot water heater on their own.
Inadvertently Causing Damage to the Exterior of the New Unit
The electrical connections to the hot water heater have to be soldered in order to remain stable and create a safe connection. Many first-time installers do not know this will be part of the job and do not leave enough space to safely accomplish the task. If you try to solder the wires too close to the tank, the heat can cause damage the exterior tank parts and pieces that are made of plastic, such as the pressure and water valve handles or the water line leading in. Before you initially set the tank where it will be situated, get the soldering done first to avoid this problem.
Making an Assumption About the Space That Is Available
Not all water heaters are made the exact same size, and therefore, when you remove your old tank and install a new model, the new model may be a much different size and shape than the previous one. If you are working with a tight space, do not just assume that a new unit will work just the same as the old one in the same amount of space. The water heater needs space surrounding it in order to be accessible in case of problems. Otherwise, you could end up with a leak or other issue that requires you to make adjustments quickly, but you cannot get to the water heater before a lot of damage has already been done. For example, a gas hot water heater needs at least two inches of space around it and 24 inches for access to the front of the heater.
Before you consider tackling a DIY water heater installation project on your own, keep in mind that it is easy to make a mistake that will cost you more in the long run. Talk to a plumber or heating service professional for advice before you get started.