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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
We have a 2' x 2' water heater closet (1st floor, pier & beam cape code home, built 1935) which got wet after water heater leakage. The current flooring in the closet is very old linoleum tile, with the floor boards below. I recall when we had slate tiles installed in the kitchen, which is attached to this closet, there was no sub-floor but rather only thick maybe 2" x 6" planks -- or something like this.

At any rate, I just capped off the water supply lines yesterday and plan to let the floor dry for about two weeks.

I am also planning to rip out the old linoleum tile, apply hardy-backer board to the floor and maybe 1 foot up the side walls, then apply ceramic tile, and then paint the closet walls and hardy-backer which is on the bottom of the walls.

Questions:

1. Is two weeks long enough to let the wet floor and wet sheet-rock near the floor dry. What about the thick water-logged planks which form the flooring support, they have to be soaking wet?

2. After I rip out the old linoleum tile, should I place anything below the hardy-backer board when I screw it in to the floor boards (using star-screws for hardy-backer)?

3. Where the hardy-backer boards join together, is there a particular caulking or cement I want to use?

4. I purchased a new Rheem 29 gallon gas water heater that has a diameter of 16-1/2", so I need a very small drain pan. Does anyone make small drain pans that I can buy online?

5. Regarding the pressure relief PVC drain line, the PVC threaded adapter which fits into the brass outlet is 3/4, so do I need to step up to 1-inch PVC to meet code, or is 3/4 PVC for the entire drain line okay?

6. For the PVC drain line coming out of the drain pan, does that have to be 1-inch or is 3/4 PVC okay?

7. Last, can the new water heater sit directly on the pan, or is a stand needed to meet code?
 

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Naildriver
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1) Find out their condition first before you make plans. Drying with forced air always helps.
2) Nothing else needed as it isn't a traffic area.
3) Use gray mesh tape and thinset for the joints.
4) http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt...er-Drain-Pan-with-PVC-Fitting-15031/205407862 is 20" in diameter.
5) Your T&P valve is fitted with 3/4" and the pipe should match. You can purchase prebent pipes for that purpose.
6) It should be 1" since that is the size of the fitting on the pan. It can be necked down without problems to 3/4" since it carries no pressure.
7) If it is gas, it is always better to have a stand. However gaining access even to an electric drain plug is a challenge if it is sitting flat on the pan. I always use 3 bricks or 2" cap blocks to raise the water heater to allow that access.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
The 3 bricks would have to be placed in the drain pan if you wanted access to electrical drains on the bottom of the heater. The pan would then sit on the new tile floor?
 

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Naildriver
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Yes, and this may eliminate the need for you to overkill the situation by tiling up on the walls as the pan will contain any overflow in the future and guide it out to the atmosphere.
 
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Discussion Starter #5
Got it. Some of the sheetrock near the floor is worn out so maybe i'll just run a kickboard's height (4") of hardy-backer on the side walls, place a 4" tile on that. When I said I might use about a 12" height of hardy-backer on the side walls -- I wasn't planning on tiling that, rather, just painting.

It's a small closet for a water heater only, so I think it doesn't matter if I don't tile over the hardy-back on the side walls?

Is it true that, since the closet may not be square, my guess is that the hardy-backer should be applied to the side walls, and then measure and cut the floor piece of hardy-backer last. You probably would never assume the floor piece to be square and perfectly symmetric?
 

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Naildriver
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If you use hardiebacker on the walls, you will need to compensate for the gap between your wall and the tile. In essence, since it is not really a normally "wet" area, you could just apply the tile directly to the sheetrock after skim coating the boogered area. Remember, with the pan it definitely won't be a wet area and the tile will basically be your baseboard.
 

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Your 3/4" T&P lines should not be constructed with PVC. It is not approved for domestic HW- that is what will be discharged from your T&P if opened. Use CPVC (flowguard) and approved glue, or copper pipe.
PVC is acceptable for the pan drain though.
Your WH T&P should discharge to the exterior or an approved drain- the pan is generally not approved since it is only 1" deep and won't handle the water volume of the open T&P valve.
Do not combine the two lines. Both can be 3/4" Also, the heater can sit directly in the pan by most codes. I always set it in the pan
 
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Naildriver
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the heater can sit directly in the pan by most codes
It wasn't a "code" matter, but a matter of convenience when the water heater needed to be drained. The drains are so low that setting the WH in the pan will make it almost impossible to attach a hose to it.

The T&P valve can use the prebent pvc type pipes without conflict. They also only have to terminate 6" above the floor/ground, just so they do not direct the flow of water to personnel. I, too, prefer them to be terminated outside to the atmosphere.
 
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It wasn't a "code" matter, but a matter of convenience when the water heater needed to be drained. The drains are so low that setting the WH in the pan will make it almost impossible to attach a hose to it.

The T&P valve can use the prebent pvc type pipes without conflict. They also only have to terminate 6" above the floor/ground, just so they do not direct the flow of water to personnel. I, too, prefer them to be terminated outside to the atmosphere.
I interpret #7 as a code question and all the info I gave is compliant to UPC. If his code is different- so be it
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I purchased 3/4" CPVC with a CPVC 3/4 fitting to screw into the high pressure brass relief valve. I am also leaving the 1 inch PVC coming out of the pan as 1". Purchased a 1-3/8" diamond core drillbit and large arbor (3/8 hexagonal drive) to drill through the brick. Hardibacker is going down well.

Question: I am running bullnose tile on the sidewalls about 2-1/2" high. For the drain and pressure relief lines going outside near the floor, can I drill two 1-3/8 holes in a piece of bullnose starting from the front side, and drilling slowly with care? Then fill in air gaps with silicone when done?
 

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Naildriver
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Doubtful that you will be able to drill a hole in the tile. You may use a coring diamond bit, but the expense would be too much, IMO. Cut the tile in half, mark the two half holes, and rout the half holes with your wet saw. You can always put an escutcheon over the hole if you booger it up.
 
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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the comments. It sounds risky drilling a 1-3/8" hole in 2-1/2" bullnose tile, but I'll give it a try. Tile is not like brick in any way, as you can scratch brick with a car key; however, porcelain tile is quite hard. So, as you said, it may be impossible without breaking a tile and realizing that the only way to do it is to cut in two, and then route the semi-circles out with a wet-tile cutter.
 
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