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Water and Gas Safety Valves - Page 2

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Water Heater Maintenance

Water heaters, like furnaces, experience problems that require attention from time to time. Contained within most Manufacturers' installation and warranty booklets are lists of maintenance items that can be performed by a homeowner or in some cases must be performed by a qualified technician. For example the following items were listed in one particular Manufacturer's instructions and are provided as information only. Always refer to the specific instructions for your particular product.

  1. The water heater's internal flue must be inspected annually. To be certain it is clean remove the draft hood and flue baffle. When reinstalling the flue baffle make certain it is hung securely by its hanger at the top of the flue way. Reinstall the draft hood.

  2. Inspect the gas venting system to make certain that the event connector from the draft hood to the chimney is properly positioned and securely attached and inspect the chimney. Replace any corroded through vent connector and remove any obstruction in vent connector or chimney.

  3. Remove any scale that may have fallen on the burner or floor shield.

  4. Visually inspect the burner annually while firing the pilot burner flame with the main burner off. If any unusual burner operation is noted, the water heater should be shut off and call a qualified service technician. Caution! Electrical injury may result! If you have an electric water heater, first make certain that the power is off, then proceed to check all wiring and wiring connections.

  5. The area near the water heater must be kept free of flammable liquids such as gasoline or paint thinners, adhesives and other combustible materials.

  6. For adequate combustion (proper burner operation) make certain that the flow of air to the water heater is not obstructed.

  7. CAUTION! Before operating the relief valve, make certain that no one is in danger of coming into contact with the hot water released by this valve. The water may be hot enough to create a SCALD hazard. The water released should be directed to a suitable drain to prevent injury or damage.

    Make certain that the drain tube (blow-off tube) is firmly attached to the valve. Lift and release the lever handle on the temperature pressure relief valve, located near the top of the water heater at least once a year. This procedure is to make certain that the safety valve operates freely. Allow several litres of water to flush through the blow-off tube into a drain or pail that you have provided.

    Note: If at any time the temperature relief valve on the water heater discharges automatically, it may be due to thermal expansion in a "closed" water system. You should immediately contact a qualified service technician. DO NOT plug the relief valve outlet, this is a safety valve and MUST NOT be tampered with.

    See News Releases: Safety Valves and Explosions

  8. A water heater's tank can act as a settling basin for solids suspended in the water. It is common for hard water deposits to accumulate in the bottom of the tank. Deposits should not be allowed to accumulate as this can affect the service life of the water heater. It is suggested that a few litres of water be drained from the water heater's tank each month. If sufficient hard water deposits accumulate, a rumbling or pounding sound can occur. There is no danger involved and the efficiency of the water heater is not seriously affected, but the noise can be annoying. If this is noted a qualified service technician should be contacted to clean the tank of these deposits.

  9. Rapid closing of faucets or solenoid valves in automatic water using appliances can cause a pounding "water hammer" sound. "Water hammer" can be described as a banging noise heard in a water pipe following an abrupt alteration of the flow with resulting pressure surges. Strategically located risers in the water pipe system can be used to minimize the problem. Also, "water hammer" arresting devices are usually available.

  10. The anode rod should be removed from the water heater's tank annually for inspection and replaced when more than 6" (15cm) of core wire is exposed at either end of the rod. Make certain that the cold water supply is turned off and pressure released. This is an item to be performed by a qualified technician.


Your water heater will eventually fail and leak!

WAGS - Water and Gas Safety ValveEssential Protection Against Water Heater Leaks

When a water heater tank fails, the WAGS valve:

  • Shuts off the water supply
  • Shuts off gas on gas-fired heaters


Round-the-clock peace of mind!

  • Prevents costly water damage
  • Alleviates related gas safety concerns
  •  Minimizes inconvenience


Most water heaters fail within 7-10 years. That’s about 5 million tank failures EVERY year. Without a WAGS valve, a leaking tank keeps refilling- and leaking. The WAGS prevents disastrous floods and untold damage to your property.

WAGS stands for Water And Gas Safety valve. The WAGS valve is designed to shut off the water supply (plus gas supply for gas-fired heaters) in the event of a water leak from a hot water heater, thus minimizing water damage and possible gas leakage. The valve can be installed on all styles of water heaters. The valve is fully mechanical and requires no external power supply.

Custom Vac Limited is a locally “Registered WAGS Installer” trained to install and protect you against the damaged caused by a leaking water heater.


  • The average water heater lasts 7-10 years

  • An undetected leaking tank can release hundreds, even thousands of gallons of water, causing costly damage to property.

  • Can you be sure someone will be there when the leak occurs?

  • Gas water heaters pose additional risk. Leaking water can extinguish the pilot flame allowing gas to escape.

  • The wags water and gas safety valve shuts off the water supply when it detects a water leak. It also shuts the gas supply off in gas-fired water heaters.

  • Proven technology, developed for the British Royal Air Force, is fully mechanical, requiring no additional power supply.

  • Cannot accidentally fire when splashed, and is impervious to humidity. The water level in the drip pan must be ¾” deep to trigger the valve.

  • Backed by a $1000.00 policy against water damage.

  • Manufactured by Taco, Inc., the most trusted name in high quality, high performance HVAC and plumbing products.

If your water heater is located on or above your main floor, located in an area not served by a floor drain, you need to consider installation of this new safety valve. Leaking water and/or high levels of moisture are the leading causes of poor indoor air quality. If water is not properly and quickly removed, furnishings, wallboard, insulation materials, wood, carpets, etc can all become breading grounds for mould. Once established, mould is very expensive and difficult to remove. Each year thousands of dollars in insurance claims are filed. The net result is lost time, out of pocket expenses and the hassle every time a water heater fails.

Are you a building owner? Think about the last water heater that failed on the third floor of your condo. We’ll bet that the damage claim, repair and hassle well exceeded 40% of the cost of the water heater. In fact an average claim today well exceeds $5000.00 for a simple homeowners claim for water damage. Good value… you decide. We have the solution… call us today!

We’ve all heard this one…

You got to be kidding… install a WAGS valve… how much water can leak from a water heater or relief valve anyway?

If asked by customers… Here are some numbers taken from Cameron Hydraulic data for WAGS

½” pipe             43 GPM            (1,032 Gallons in 24-Hours)
¾” pipe             97 GPM            (2,328 Gallons in 24-Hours)
1” pipe              173 GPM          (4,152 Gallons in 24-Hours)
1 ¼” pipe          270 GPM          (6,480 Gallons in 24-Hours)
1 ½” pipe          389 GPM          (9,336 Gallons in 24-Hours)

** GPM = Gallons Per Minute @50 PSI water supply pressure

Properly installed residential 30 & 40-gallon water heaters have a ¾” temperature and pressure relief valve installed. If that valve discharged and remained open it is possible that in 8 hours, 776 gallons of water would be discharged into the home. With a WAGS valve that number would be ZERO or near ZERO!

In the case of a catastrophic failure of a commercial 100-gallon tank with 1 ¼” piping the result in 8 hours could be 2,160 gallons of water. With a WAGS valve that number would be 100-gallons or less.

The next time you hear this from a customer you can share this information with them and know that the WAGS safety valve can without doubt protect their home or building from the damage resulting from water damage due to leaking water heaters.

  • See water leak facts for additional information

Other Water Leak Facts

  • A small leak in a metal pipe of just 1/8” of an inch at a water pressure of 40 PSI (Conservative since most homes are 50 PSI) leaks an amazing 2,500 gallons of water in 24-Hours

  • A leak the size of a pinhead can waste 336,000 gallons per year, enough water to fill 12,000 bathtubs to the overflow mark.

  • A leaking toilet can use 90,000 gallons in just one month.

  • A dripping faucet/hose bib can loose up to 180 gallons per month or 2,160 gallons per year.

  • Approximately 1 in 20 pools has a leak.

  • Approximately 1 in 318 homes or buildings has a leak.

  • A typical toilet leak at today’s rate can add $500.00 to a single water bill.

  • One trip to the car wash uses 150 gallons of drinking water.

  • Collecting water for gardening from the faucet while waiting for hot water saves about 250 gallons of water per month. (Think of many gallons of drinking water that you could save by collecting rain water from your homes downspouts)

  • Using a broom to clean the sidewalk instead of hosing saves 150 gallons of water.

WAGS Valve Custom Vac

WAGS Installer Checklist


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Custom VAC Ltd.
1567 Logan Avenue
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3E 1S5
T. 204-775-7744
T. 204-772-5799
F. 204-774-8557


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