Install Earthquake Strapping for a Waterheater

Earthquake Strapping Waterheater

Water heater strapping for earthquake safety is a code requirement in California. Many water heaters go unsecured until the home is sold, at which time the owner is required to do the work.

Earthquake strapping comes in different qualities. I suggest that you always choose the better grade.

The water heater must also be secure against the back and/or side walls which have the straps attached. This is often accomplished with 2×4 lumber wedged between wall and water heater. In the case of the water heater above, it was already situated against the back and side walls.

Low estimate for materials and labor:

  • Water Heater Strapping
  • Scrap 2×4 lumber for support (if needed)
  • Misc screws and anchor bolts
  • Labor 1 hour

High estimate for materials and labor:

  • Heavy Duty Water Heater Strapping
  • Scrap 2×4 lumber for support (if needed)
  • Misc screws and anchor bolts
  • Labor 1 hour

If you are a contractor or a handyman, how much would this job cost in your area?

Low Price: $75

Consensus Price: $80

High Price: $115


16 thoughts on “Install Earthquake Strapping for a Waterheater”

  1. Depending on if its a new water heater install or an already existing one that needs to be strapped in and also its location will give you various installation labor costs. If I was installing a new one I’d just throw in in as part of the install for free be it that the customer also purchases it along with the water heater. Now in opened areas to be strapped in I’d charge about $40.00. Enclosed areas can get a little tricky being the lack of space to work in. In that situation it would be hard to say but an average minimum of $75.00 depending on what needs to be done in order to safely, properly secure the unit.

    1. Vivian Arevalo

      I have a water heater that needs to be strapped, it is located outside in a- not sure of the name of container it is in. What is you minimum and highest charge. What does the service call cost. The house is located in East Los Angeles.

      Thank you
      Vivian Arevalo

  2. For an existing water heater including materials would be $80 assuming there is easy accessibility. Tight places could be more.

  3. It depends on the situation. I just strapped a water heater for a pending home sale. The heater was under the house, in a little cinder block room accessed through a trap door in a closet. I had to climb up and down a ladder to several times just to get my tools down there. I had to drill into the cinder blocks and install anchors and climb out to make braces because the heater was so far from the wall. This is an extreme example and the total cost was $125.

    1. Carol Dingwell

      Need to have earthquake strapping installed as soon as possible. Water heater is in the basement and we have the kit. The walls are rock not wooden studs. Husband is 76 and unable to do this chore. Located in Spokane,WA.

  4. Hello,this is mike and i’will like to know if you do water heater installation and if you do accept credit card as a form of payment?

  5. I called 4 places for a quote to do this job in Southern California. My water heater has easy access and space to install the bracket. I was quoted $249, $199, $150, and $160 parts and labor. I’m shocked to see such low prices being offered. The quotes came from local plumbers because I couldn’t find a handyman who could do the job on short notice.

    1. The quotes you are getting sound about right Brian. For a service call we always charge a high first hour cost. That covers our cost of going to the shop, supply house and then your house. It covers the gas and cost of materials plus our hourly rate which is anywhere from 65-80/hr up here in Seattle. Id quote you 200 even, 175 if you pay cash.

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