Add Extra Storage Next To Water Heater

With a small apartment and a bathroom you literally have to close the door before you (ahem) sit down, I needed more space. Cornelius needed some space, too. Since space is something we both needed, I decided to revamp the whole "hot water heater room".


The first thing I did was make a trash can bag a liner, using it cut down and elastic to keep it in place. The board in front is to keep the "kicking litter" inside the room and easy to vacuum.

A storage unit was worth the $14.00 to store the things I didn't have room for: tools, towels, cleaning supplies, candles and matches, flashlights, batteries, and hardware.


Finishing up the project was the lace curtain to cover it all up.

This is a real coup for me as I was trying to keep the things I needed in the house in cabinets, drawers, under the sink and even in the tub to take out when I need it. I think this is much better!

Hope this inspires someone to clean, organize or decorate for whatever need they have!

By Poor But Proud from Salem, OR

July 17, 20110 found this helpful

Been there, done that, tiny spaces an' all. Great idea, but, but, please check with your local codes! We had a fire-marshall inspection away's back, and were told to keep a 24" clearance around the water heater! It's difficult sometimes, when others don't pay attention, and we're getting the water heater enclosed soon which will take care of some of those frustrations (the enclosure doesn't hafta be quite so spacey). You mentioned storing towels, cleaning supplies, candles and matches(!) there, whoa! Flammable items, to be sure! From your photos, it looks like the drain plug, and maybe even the pilot light access door, has been covered. This, too, is not a good sign. Maybe, if permitted, you could erect a sheet of drywall next to the water heater, one that could be easily & quickly removed if necessary, trade places of the litter pan and the shelving unit. Safer, to be sure, but please, please have your setup checked by an official, you may have just a little space, but you don't want to have no space!

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July 18, 20110 found this helpful

It's not gas, so there's that. But, good advice. Thanks!

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February 20, 20162 found this helpful

As a firefighter, I have to disagree with using this area as storage. In fact, it is against most building and zoning codes. Most laws state a 2-3 foot clearance surrounding the hot water unit, regardless of if it is gas or electric. I have seen many fires caused by this very thing. The items you listed are flammable, especially the cleaning supplies. I would NOT recommend this at all, but advise against it.

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February 23, 20160 found this helpful

Well I am no longer in that apt. You are the first person to even comment and this was first posted 4 years ago. Point taken.

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April 15, 20160 found this helpful

Glad you moved.

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In This Article
Beautifully Organized Apartment
Organizing an Apartment
Home and Garden Home Improvement Helpful HintsJuly 4, 2011
Cleaning a Water Heater
Cleaning a Water Heater
Water Heater
Does My Water Heater Need To Be Replaced?
Water Heater
Troubleshooting a Water Heater
Maintaining Your Water Heater
Maintaining Your Water Heater
Halloween Ideas!
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