I have been accused of being “clever” myself on occasion, so I tend to recognize it when I see it. When it comes to home repairs being clever can be a good thing—but without enough information it can be dangerous.
Take TPRV drains for example.
There is a TPRV (Temperature, Pressure Relief Valve) on every tank type water heater. It should have a drain on it that runs to an appropriate location without running up hill. While these valves may harmlessly leak a little water now and then, they are designed as a safety relief valve where tremendous amounts of very hot water may need to be drained away in a hurry.
The installation of the drain termination pictured below (copper pipe entering from the top, right) will likely be satisfactory for minor leaking of the TPRV, but it will not be satisfactory in an explosive relief of pressure. Very hot water would likely be sprayed everywhere in the room before it found its way into the drain with a washing machine hose stuck in it.
The odd thing about this installation is that it would have been way easier to have routed the drain to a more appropriate location.
By Charles Buell, Real Estate Inspections in Seattle
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