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WAGS Customers Share Their Troubles

It took three weeks of industrial fans and dehumidifiers going 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to dry out the damaged floors and walls.

Dear Taco,
Unknowingly, our hot water heater had been leaking for a few months. Over time the leak became a whirlpool of water, damaging our floors and walls. Under the carpet was linoleum. The linoleum had to be tested for asbestos. The results came back positive. Our home had to be quarantined off while the contractors tore out the linoleum. We couldn't enter the house until the "air quality" tests came back "safe."

It took three weeks of industrial fans and dehumidifiers going 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to dry out the damaged floors and walls. Everything in the living area had to be removed in order for the contractor to repair the damage, this included the water heater being "out of order" for four days. It was a total of four weeks until our house got "put back together."

Had I know about the WAGS VALVE we could have been spared of inconveniences. THANK YOU for introducing us to such an exceptional product. It's a feeling of comfort knowing that we will never have to experience this again.

Rory & Terri
Lynnwood, WA

Coming Home to Standing Water

Dear Taco,
When I learned of your WAGS valve product I knew I had to have it installed for my peace of mind, as you'll learn from my story below.

While I was out of town overnight on business I retrieved a message off my office voice mail system called in by my home security company. They said a neighbor had reported driving by and seeing water flowing out between the brick line and the floor foundation. I then called my neighbor and learned he had turned off the water supply to the house once this was discovered and called the service company.

I arrived back at my home that day to find water standing on the floor and soaked in the carpet throughout my 2300 square foot one story house. Walking through my home it wasn't long before I discovered the flooding source. The ceiling in the guest bathroom had crashed in from the water heater above the attic. For some reason the tank had cracked or rusted out causing a continuous flow of water since the water line does not shut off.

(Surprisingly, I had previously had the heater checked 3 months earlier by a local plumbing company. The plumbing company. The plumbing company came out and ran a through inspection check of the heater for any problems and flushed the tank to clean out any material and reported no problems.)

As you can imagine the water flow coming out of the heater tank was not a "leak" but a full force flow similar to the amount you might see out of your bathtub faucet turned wide open. This flow level was too great to be contained and drained by the drip pan under the heater.

I had to have a reclamation company, provided by the insurance company, remove furniture, pull up all the carpet and remove the soaked foam padding and finally set up fans to blow air throughout the house. It took a full 3 days after the carpet was ripped out before I could finally get the insurance adjuster out. This then began the long inconvenient process of getting a crew to remove the old heater, install a new heater, begin repairs on the ceiling, walls, baseboard trim and install new carpet. The whole process from flooding to final installation of new carpet took about 5 weeks to gather all the different shill repairmen involved.

Prior to learning about your WAGS valve I had been contemplating a way to move the water heater from the attic to avoid another catastrophe. Plus I felt this would be essential as a selling point for any home buyer if I ever needed to move. I was extremely happy to learn about your new product and leaped without hesitation to get a WAGS valve installed, because once you've been flooded by this type of mishap it becomes an uneasiness and concern especially when you're away from home.

Sincerely yours,

P.S. The busted heater was a (Name deleted) installed in February 1993. It ruptured in January 1999. My insurance claim came to a payment of $4,288.94 after depreciation and deductible. Total repairs exceeded $5,400.

All the home in my neighborhood are built with the water heaters in the attic and I bet several neighbors would be interested in your product especially after witnessing my fiasco.

One More Homeowner Who Won't be Without a WAGS

"What a nightmare," says Jeff Southworth, when he talks about what could have happened to his basement family room if WAGS had not been on the job.

Shortly after Southworth, his wife and three children returned to their ranch-style house in Pawtucket, RI, on the Saturday before Mother's Day, his wife discovered water on the floor of the laundry room that adjoins the family room.

"Earlier in the week, the pressure relief valve on my water heater had blown off some water and was trickling. I know that every once in a while one of those valves will pop and get stuck so that it can't reset," he says. Southworth "fixed" the problem by giving the valve "a light tap with a hammer," as a friend advised, he explains. But that Saturday, the pressure relief valve failed again and began dumping water through the overflow pipe.

The water first ran into a bucket that Southworth says, "I have always kept there, for whatever reason, just in case the pressure relief valve blew off water, it wouldn't go on the floor.

The bucket was wedged into a tight space and didn't sit level. The water soon filled the bucket, which fortunately was tilted toward the drip pan under the heater. It could just as easily have been tilted away, Southworth says. As water collected in the pan, WAGS did what it was designed to do-shut off the water and gas supply and stop the leak.

"I lucked out," he says. In a big way, as it turns out.

Only months before, Southworth had finished the family room with plaster walls and new carpeting. It was filled with new furniture, electronics, computers. "We live down there," he adds. "Three-quarters of my basement is finished. In the rest are the washer and dryer, the hot water heater, an extra freezer, my boiler and some extra storage," he explains. Add it all together and water damage could easily have run into tens of thousands of dollars.

Also, just months previously Southworth had a new, 50-gal, gas-fired water heater installed to increase his home's hot water capacity. A friend told him how frequently water heaters fail and about the flooding and damage they can cause, then gave him a WAGS valve for the new heater.

Southworth had a pro install the valve for him The plumber wasn't familiar with WAGS, Southworth recalls, and wasn't convinced of its value. He objected to the fact that WAGS can't be reset and must be replaced after it's been triggered.

"In hindsight, I probably thought a little bit that way, too," Southworth says. "Looking back on it and having had the problem, I think for the peace of mind I have now it is well worth the money."

His experience convinced Southworth of what we've said all along. Considering the financial and emotional disaster a flooded basement can be, every water heater you install should have a WAGS valve.

"I'm going out and buy my Dad a WAGS because he has a finished basement, too," Southworth says. "And I've taken a bunch of pamphlets to work and have been passing them out like crazy, telling people they are nuts not to have one of these."

He adds, "I will absolutely have a WAGS valve on all my water heaters."