Can You Lay a Water Heater on Its Side? Words of Advice!

A fragile glass lining is inside the delicate metal housing of a water heater. Resting on its side can be pretty dangerous for the water heater. Can you lay a water heater on its side? Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to move a water heater vertically.

The rest of this article will go through safe methods for moving a water heater on its side.

How Fragile Are Water Heaters

The water heater’s inside is incredibly delicate and prone to damage from vibration when in motion. While tank water heaters only last 10–12 years, tankless water heaters often last 18–20 years. Traditional tank storage water heaters typically stay between 10 and 15 years, whereas tankless models can last up to 20 years.

How Can You Lay A Water Heater On Its Side?

There is a ton of misinformation about how carrying water heaters lying down might cause glass linings to break, anode rods or dip tubes to flex or damage, or some other fanciful issue.

can you lay a water heater on its side

Read also: Water Heater Burning Smell

  1. Prepare the Water Heater for Transport

You must complete a few steps before your water heater is ready to be transported:

  1. Get your supplies together
  2. Garden Hose
  3. Bucket
  4. Screwdriver
  5. Pipe cutter
  6. Wrenches
  7. Make sure the electricity or gas is shut off.
  8. Take it away from the heat source (gas or electricity).
  9. Using a yard hose and bucket, drain any hot water that is left over.

Ensure the electricity or gas supply is safely disconnected. For gas water heaters, carefully detach the gas line using a wrench, ensuring no leaks. Remove the water heater from its heat source, whether it’s gas or electric.

  1. Transport the Water Heater to Your Vehicle

The challenging aspect is this. It will help if you exercise extreme caution to prevent breaking the metal housing, rod, or dip tube. These components are necessary for a working water heater.

You must transport the water heater to the vehicle you use to carry it now that it has been detached and drained. It may be challenging for one person to lift a water heater’s 150–200 pounds (68–90 kg) weight.

Can You Transport A Water Heater On Its Side?

It is feasible to transport a water heater on its side, provided you handle it with care. Securing the pressure relief valve and other external components is crucial to prevent damage during the move.

If you’re planning to carry the water heater, it cannot be thrown around or have any weight placed on it. Parts inside and outside a water heater might move or break during transport, resulting in long-term damage.

Moving a water heater vertically and horizontally requires distinct procedures.

We have put up a tutorial that will explain how to move a water heater horizontally and vertically to ensure you don’t damage it. Remember that you would be better off paying someone to do this if you lacked the necessary tools or physical strength.

Read also: AO Smith Water Heater Reset Button

Also, if you transport a water heater improperly, you could have to replace it, which would be expensive.

Before moving your water heater, it’s also wise to inspect all connections, including the gas line and water pipes, to ensure they are fully disconnected and capped. This precaution prevents any accidental leaks or damage.

When laying the water heater on its side, use padding to protect the outer casing and internal components from shock and vibrations, which could compromise the integrity of the glass lining or internal mechanisms.

Final Takeaway

Hopefully, by this point, you will have enough knowledge to decide how to move your water heater. Your question now might be: can a water heater be transported on its side? If unsure, we strongly advise hiring assistance if you work on this project alone. A water heater will be challenging to move on its whole due to its weight and size.

You’ll almost certainly run into a problem if you try to handle this on your own, which might result in permanent harm or even injury. So instead, be sensible, follow the proper procedures, and take your time with this process.

The final verdict of the burning question is, can you lay a water heater on its side? Avoid rushing the procedure and buying a new water heater as a result. The water heater may appear to be a vast empty tank, but inside parts may be damaged if it is dropped or rolled while being moved.

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Heater Technician is a skilled author and water heater expert with years of experience in the field. He has authored several articles and books on various aspects of water heater installation, maintenance, and repair.