Codes say I need a shutoff valve "near" the water heater, accessible on the same floor.

How near is "near" - is it OK if I have one on the source side of the pipe, near the water meter? (It's a single pipe feeding just the water heater.)

I have one there anyway, and it feels silly to have one on both sides of a single pipe. But if codes require....

  • More info needed. How near is the water meter to the water heater? Did someone tell you you needed one that is closer than the one you have or are you reading the code and not knowing the specifics of its intent? – Alaska Man Dec 7 '17 at 18:43
  • If you're going to have one, then have it be a good one that will do its job well. Put yourself in the shoes of a person needing to use that valve, presumably in an emergency. Recognizing that in emergencies, people don't rise to extraordinary skill, they slip into muddled thinking and panic. This is why armies train, train, train. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Dec 7 '17 at 18:51
  • @Harper, good point. If the one near the meter is like the typical ones found by meters then it requires a wrench to be turned. ( finding a wrench in an emergency will take valuable time) A good quarter turn valve on the supply line at or very close to where it enters the water heater is the best and it should be LABELED. – Alaska Man Dec 7 '17 at 19:04
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    The one near the meter is on a manifold, that connects to the PEX pipe leading to the water heater. Each output from the manifold has its own valve. It's a normal ball valve. – Ariel Dec 7 '17 at 19:11
  • The shutoff valve(s) at the water heater are meant for servicing the unit without shutting off the water to the entire house. "Near" is a term that is interpreted by your inspector. I would say if the valve is not within reach when you are standing at the water heater then it is not "near". But that is an opinion not a definition. The Inspector will have their own opinion. – ArchonOSX Dec 8 '17 at 14:54

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