Often asked: What Is A Water Heater Expansion Tank?

Is an expansion tank necessary on a water heater?

An expansion tank is always highly recommended if you have a ‘closed-loop system’ caused by any kind of check valve or pressure regulating valve installed on your house’s water supply line. However, the long-term wear and tear of this excess pressure can reduce the life expectancy of everything in your plumbing system.

How do I know if I need an expansion tank on my water heater?

If your home has a “closed” plumbing system, then yes, you’ll need an expansion tank. You see, homes have either an open or a closed plumbing system. A closed plumbing system prevents water from flowing in the reverse direction (i.e., water won’t flow back into city lines once it enters your home’s pipes).

How long do water heater expansion tanks last?

The average life of your tank can be anywhere between five and 10 years. You can extend the life of your expansion tank by making sure that your home’s water pressure matches the air pressure in your expansion tank. But in some cases, you’ll need to replace it.

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What happens when a water heater expansion tank fails?

Oftenthe diaphragm dividing the two systems will fail, causing the two systems to become one. When this happens, the expansion tank turns into a “dead leg” that will eventually cause damage and premature failure to your water heater.

How much does it cost to install an expansion tank on a water heater?

The cost to install a thermal expansion tank can range from $300 to $400. Often the expense of the thermal expansion tank is included in the cost of the new water heater.

Does expansion tank go on hot or cold side?

Although expansion tanks can be installed on the hot side, we strongly recommend they be installed on the cold line, downstream of the shutoff valve.

Where should an expansion tank be located?

The expansion tank (potable water type) should be installed on the inlet cold-water line. It can be installed anywhere in the building on the cold-water supply (after the regulator). It is usually installed by plumbers on the cold-water inlet of the water heater.

Can you install expansion tank upside down?

Expansion tanks can be installed in any direction. Whether oriented uprightly, horizontally, or even upside down, the expansion tank will function properly without any adverse effects. Without proper support, the expansion tank could break off its mounting pipe — especially if the tank fails and fills with water.

Where do you put the expansion tank on a water heater?

An expansion tank is generally installed directly above the water heater by means of a tee-fitting installed in the cold water delivery pipe. The expansion tank is usually installed horizontally, though it is acceptable to install it vertically if it is necessary because of space limitations.

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How much pressure should be in a water heater expansion tank?

The recommended water pressure is between 50 and 60 PSI. Thermal Expansion Tanks contain an air bladder which is pressurized with air, and expands and contracts to absorb the expanded water from the water heater. needed. Check the air pressure in the Expansion Tank using a tire gauge.

How do you know if the expansion tank is bad?

How to Tell If an Expansion Tank is Working

  1. Tap on the tank. It should be hollow about half way up.
  2. Check the temperature by feeling the top and bottom of the tank. The tank should be warm on the bottom and cool on the top if it is working properly.
  3. Use an air gauge to check the pressure inside the tank.

What happens if expansion tank is full?

The loss of air cushion in the expansion / compression tank means that at each heating-on cycle the system pressure can be too high, causing the temperature/pressure relief valve to spill. Air in the hot water heating system can cause loss of heat: air in baseboards radiators keeps hot water out – they don’t get hot.

Can an expansion tank explode?

In fact, the tank may explode! Thermal Expansion Can Cause Hot Water Heaters to Explode! A typical hot water heater in an “open” sys- tem has only a temperature and pressure (T&P) valve to prevent a rupture of the hot water heater (figure A). This compressibility allows the ex- panding hot water a place to go.

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