A plumber installed the hot water pressure relief pipe to point outside the water heater pan, as shown in this picture (on the right). What could be the reason to do so? Is this recommended/proper installation? Why not in the pan?
enter image description here

  • Seems like a great way to rot the floor ...
    – brhans
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 19:23
  • So what was the plumber’s name? Dilbert or Bob (the builder)?
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 19:27
  • It was installed in 2011, so too late to ask questions :(. The plumber replaced the water heater and installed this new pan. I'm asking just now since another plumber looked and had no clue why it was done this way.
    – sasha
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 19:33
  • 2
    The pipe from the TPV should go either outside the structure or into a drain. Is there an opening into the sewer near the water heater? The pan is also supposed to have an attached drain to conduct any water away. If there is no practical route for this you could put a water sensor in the drain pan and connect it to an audible alarm. Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 20:28
  • yes, there is drain at the back of the pan.
    – sasha
    Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 14:09

1 Answer 1


I'd cut it off just above the first elbow. If there's a drain in the back of the pan it can empty out there. Not perfect, but better than what you got now.

The end of the relief pipe is supposed to come down to within 6" of the floor, but it looks like that's about where it would be.

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