On the top or side of every water heater, there is a “TPR” Valve. This abbreviation stands for Temperature & Pressure Relief. It is a simple device that releases water from the tank and plumbing system to prevent the tank from bursting or exploding if the temperature in the water heater reaches or exceeds 200 degrees.
The TPR valve is one of the many things we look at during our inspections. It’s also one of the missing safety devices we seem to write up all to regularly.
The correct way to terminate the valve is to install a 3/4″ pipe straight down to within 6″ of the floor, that’s it.
So, why do we see some of the most amazing plumbing with pipes bent around the tank and then down with multiple right angle connectors. Pipes reduced to 1/2″ pipe, connected to a main drain, going up into attics or even a garden hose?
Most of these solutions, which are not safe or legal, cost more than the correct straight pipe (available at all big hardware stores for about $10).
Even plumbers sometimes make a huge job out of a simple installation.
Follow the old adage, “keep it simple stupid”.
There must be a pipe on the valve
to prevent scalding in case of a malfunction.