Why You Need a Water Heater Expansion Tank and How it Works

Have you heard of a water heater expansion tank? If you haven’t, you’re in the right place to change that.

According to the IBHS, the average lifespan of a water heater is 10 to 20 years. However, this number goes down as most heater failure is due to slow bursts and leaks, at an astonishing 69% from overall issues.  Unfortunately, this is quite a big number.

It’s essential to understand why an expansion tank is necessary, how it works, and its benefits. Understanding this is the first step to using the utility and power of the device.

This blog post will provide the information you need to make an informed decision about an expansion tank within your home’s plumbing. Keep on reading to learn how installing expansion tanks helps and much more.

Water Heater Expansion Tank: What Is It?

The water heater’s expansion tank is a small, yet important component that helps prevent excessive pressure from harming your home.

When heated up in the hot H2O department of any given structure (i.e., kitchen or bathroom), it will contract with increased force due to its size as well as thermal energy before releasing this extra strength back out again when needed most- during showers!

An expansion tank serves as a safety measure and will help protect both you and your appliances from any potential damage. It works by taking some of the extra pressure off of all of these devices. This is so they can continue working safely without causing problems with one another.

When it comes down to it, this piece provides insurance against leaks, ruptures, corrosion caused by excess heat exposure. It also protects clogging due to sediment buildup within pipes or valves. This has been tampered with or is improperly installed/maintained over time.

As you can see, this device can practically save your livelihood. Think of it as a guardian angel for your plumbing and water heater leaks. Not having one of these in cold weather climate is a big risk.

How Does It Work?

An expansion tank is required for any water heater installation. This is especially true if the home has more than one appliance drawing from the hot water supply line.

Tankless heaters are becoming an increasingly popular choice in recent years. However, they have one big drawback – no storage tank!

This means that when several appliances start up at once (dishwasher + washing machine), or there’s a demand spike due to unusually high outdoor temperatures, the flow rate of hot water can exceed the capacity of your plumbing and cause problems.

The expansion tank will absorb this excess pressure and keep things running smoothly without damaging your costly equipment.

Furthermore, if you are using a tankless water heater and live in an area with cold winters, it is essential to have an expansion tank installed on the system. When the temperature outside drops below a certain threshold, the water inside your pipes will start to freeze.

If this happens, the ice will expand and could cause damage to your plumbing or even rupture the pipe. An expansion tank can help prevent this by taking up some of that excess space. This is so the freezing process won’t cause as much pressure on the system.

When Does Someone Need One?

Most water heaters come with an existing expansion tank. But if you are unsure or built your home before 1986, it is best to have a qualified plumber check things out.

The expansion tank should be sized appropriately for the maximum flow rate of your plumbing. It should always be located after the pressure-reducing valve on the cold water line.

It’s also important to keep in mind that an expansion tank can only do so much. If a significant leak or burst is happening somewhere else in the system, no added pressure from the tank will help.

Professional assistance is necessary to get everything back up and running safely in these cases.

Furthermore, if you’re using a tankless water heater and live in an area with cold winters, it is essential to have an expansion tank installed on the system.

If the temperature drops below a certain threshold, the water inside your pipes will start to freeze. An expansion tank can help prevent this by taking up some of that excess space so the freezing process won’t cause as much pressure on the system.

What Are The Benefits?

An expansion tank provides several benefits for both homeowners and their appliances:

  • Prevents leaks, ruptures, and corrosion caused by extreme high-pressure temperatures
  • Keeps machines running smoothly without damage
  • Protects plumbing and piping from freezing and rupturing in cold weather climates
  • It is a necessary component for tankless water heaters in cold weather climates

If you are looking for a way to prevent your water heater from leaking or bursting, then an expansion tank is the perfect solution! It is a simple device that can help keep your home safe and your appliances running smoothly.

The benefits of expansion tanks are usually very inexpensive and can be purchased at any hardware store for a meager cost.

While there aren’t many downsides, some people claim that the tank takes up unnecessary space within their home plumbing.

Your Water Heater Safe

An expansion tank is a necessary component in most homes. This simple device will keep both your water heater and your appliances running smoothly without causing damage.

Furthermore, if you live in cold weather, it is essential to have an expansion tank installed on the hot water supply line of any heating unit. This is because they produce no storage capacity, which could result in rupturing during freezing.

If you’d like to purchase your water heater expansion tank, get in touch with us to accommodate your pressing needs.

About Vincent Veilleux

After earning my Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the UQTR University, I entered the water heater industries to explore my passion for new experiences and green technologies. In addition to my primary job fonctions, I also studied at NACE about Corrosion and Cathodic Protection.

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