As California residents, we all face tremors and the possibility of a more massive earthquake at any moment of the day or night. For this reason, there are strict building codes, and most locals take precautions to ensure their safety and that of their belongings. As an essential part of your preparations, you should make sure that one thing you do is secure your water heater.
In the event of a powerful tremor or earthquake, your water heater is vulnerable to tipping over and breaking your water and gas lines. This could result in a fire or flooding, adding to the damage the earthquake may already have done to your home. Furthermore, a gas fire or flood could cause damage that’s far more catastrophic than what a tremor could ordinarily cause. But, it’s preventable! By securing your water heater, you can prevent it from falling over and avoid these problems.
How do you do it?
Purchase Water Heater Safety Straps
There are water heater safety strap kits available at most hardware stores. Pick one up! These kits are also available online through sites like Amazon. Each package should include four straps, some J-clips, bolts, and some hex nuts. Make sure you check the sizes listed on the kit and ensure that the straps will be large enough to secure your size water heater.
Depending on the position of your water heater, you may need to consider some additional supports. However, most water heaters are close enough to the wall that you can secure them directly there. If you have a more complicated setup, call your trusted plumbers at BCPSI for advice. We can usually find a way to help you secure your heater.
Install the Kit
Next, get out your drill because it’s time to secure your water heater. Follow the instructions on your kit, and you shouldn’t run into any issues. Your straps should be located about a third of the way up and a third of the way down on your water heater so that it’s secured from two locations.
Now, in the event of an earthquake, your water heater should be secure, making it much less likely to tip over. Remember, after a severe quake; you can use the water from your water heater as clean drinking water should it come to that.
Consider Flexible Gas and Water Lines
Finally, since you’re doing earthquake preparedness, you may want to consider changing out your gas and water lines for flexible parts. The place where the gas and water enter your water heater are vulnerable to cracking or breaking during an earthquake. With flexible or semi-flexible lines, you can reduce your risk. Changing these lines can be a DIY project, or have your local, trusty plumbers at Biard & Crocket in Orange County do it for you.
Congratulations, now, your water heater is fully prepared for an earthquake! With a relatively small amount of effort, you can make a big difference in your home’s preparedness when facing a strong tremor or earthquake. Given how simple the solution is, there’s no reason not to do it!
Need help securing your water heater? Call the experts at Biard & Crockett to help! We look forward to serving you soon.