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Can gas supply pipe be touching the water heater ?

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I just had a new water heater installed and permit was pulled by the installers .  The  gas line is touching the water heater and the contractor wasn't sure if it  will be a issue with city inspector
asked in Plumbing by marcinx (120 points)
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1 Answer

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Hi Marcin,

I'm not aware of any code paragraphs regulating contact of a gas supplying pipe and the water heater enclosure. But this does not mean that it wouldn't be flagged by an inspector, code and interpretation of it's paragraphs, even non existing ones :), often varies significantly. If it was installed this way because of space limitation around the WH you can use electrical tape to wrap the gas pipe section in contact area, just to increase your chances for passing the inspection.

However, if there's room around the water heater but the installer instead of rerouting the pipe left it this way because it was faster and easier, some inspectors may complain about it for purely aesthetic reasons.

I wouldn't worry about it and just let the inspector decide. Since the installer pulled the permit he must be licensed and takes full responsibility for his work.
answered by darekrudy (21,730 points)