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    Every major water heater manufacturer has models of water heaters specifically designed for mobile homes. State Water Heaters, for example, has the “Scout” line approved for mobile homes. Water heaters that meet HUD standards have the following characteristics:

  1. 1)Usually side plumbed for cold water inlet.

  2. 2)Approved by a major national rating agency as compliant with HUD standards for energy efficiency. To avoid the possibility of carbon monoxide leakage into a mobile home when a gas water heater is installed, there must be a complete separation of the combustion system from the interior air of the home. This can be achieved by a “direct vent” sealed combustion system (although not all direct vent water heaters are HUD-approved) or by installing the water heater in a compartment that is sealed-off from the living area of the home and only accessible from outside.

  3. 3)Must have a non-adjustable temperature and pressure relief (TPR) valve.

  4. 4)A corrosion resistant catch pan and drain to the exterior necessary under the water heater.

  5. 5)Water heater required to be secured in place, usually by a strap system.

    After a mobile home leaves the factory and is installed at a site, it is no longer under the oversight of HUD. So, theoretically, you could install a non-approved water heater when the time comes for replacement. Some local jurisdictions check for HUD approval and others don’t. But what happens if the water heater causes an insurance claim? Will your homeowner’s insurance honor the claim if the damage was caused by a non-approved appliance? Also, will a home inspector like us call out the lack of HUD-approval for your replacement water heater when you sell the home? For these reasons, we recommend a HUD-approved replacement water heater. They are more expensive than a standard water heater, but a good way to avoid future grief.


    Here’s links to more of our blog posts with useful information about buying and owning a mobile home:

  1. Does it make sense to buy an older mobile home and remodel it?

  2. Where do I find the vehicle identification number (VIN) on a mobile home?

  3. How do I find out how old a mobile home is and who manufactured it?

  4. What is the life expectancy of a mobile home?

  5. What are the most common problems with older mobile homes?

  6. What is the right price for a used mobile home?

  7. What does the HUD tag look like and where do I find it on a mobile home?

While we hope you find this series of articles about home inspection helpful, they should not be considered an alternative to an actual home inspection by a local inspector. Also, construction standards vary in different parts of the country and it is possible that important issues related to your area may not be covered here.
© McGarry and Madsen Inspection

Even more blog posts about mobile homes:

  1. How can I make my mobile home look more like a house?

  2. How can I tell the difference between a manufactured home and a modular home?

  3. How much does it cost to move a mobile home?

  4. Can I install a mobile home myself?

  5. Where are Wind Zone 2 and Wind Zone 3 for mobile homes located?

  6. Can I paint the vinyl covered wallboard in a mobile home?

  7. How can I know if my mobile home meets HUD Code?

  8. What can I do to prevent moisture problems in my mobile home?

  9. Does an addition to a mobile home have to comply with with HUD Code?

  10. How much does a mobile home inspection cost?

  11. What is a Park Model mobile home?

  12. What is an air conditioner for a mobile home called?

  13. Do I need stairs at all exit doors from a mobile home?

  14. Why are there two VIN numbers on some mobile home titles?

  15. What’s the difference between a manufactured and a mobile home?

  16. Why are there cracks in the wallboard in a mobile home after its moved?

  17. Can you move a mobile home that is 20 years old in Florida?

  18. What is a pit set mobile home?

  19. Do you have any tips for buying a used mobile home?

  20. Why is the floor tile cracked in my mobile home?

  21. Why is it important that a mobile home stay level throughout its lifetime?

  22. How much venting is required for mobile home skirting?

  23. What do I need to know about building an addition to a mobile home?

  24. What is the average lifespan of a wood deck?

  25. What is the best air conditioner for a mobile home?

  26. What is a D-sticker mobile home?

  27. What is the life expectancy of a modular home?

  28. How do I upgrade my old (pre-1976) mobile home to meet HUD standards?

  29. When was the first double-wide mobile home manufactured?

  30. Why is my double-wide considered a HUD home?

  31. How energy efficient is a mobile home?

  32. Can I tell the year of a manufactured/mobile home from the HUD tag (red tag)?

  33. Can a mobile/manufactured home have a high radon problem?

  34. What are the HUD requirements for selling a remodeled or renovated mobile home?

  35. How many mobile/manufactured home manufacturers are licensed to sell their homes in Florida?

  36. Can a mobile/manufactured home get termites?

  37. What are the limitations on homesites where a mobile/manufactured home can be located?

  38. What does a home inspector look for when examining a mobile home crawl space?

  39. How do I look for mold in my mobile home?

  40. What is the difference between the electric service to a mobile home and a site built home?

  41. How can I make my mobile home more energy efficient?

  42. What are the ventilation requirements for bathrooms and kitchens in mobile homes?

  43. What would cause half of a double-wide mobile home to lose electric power?

  44. Can I convert a shipping container into a HUD-code manufactured/mobile home?

  45. Where do I find the water heater in a mobile home?

  46. How do HUD-code mobile/manufactured home standards compare to the IRC building code for site-built homes?

  47. What is the right humidity level in a mobile home?

  48. What is the building code for mobile/manufactured homes in Florida?

  49. Where do I find the VIN/serial number on a very old (pre-1976) mobile home?