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Is An Expansion Tank Needed For Your Hot Water Heater?

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One potential problem that can damage your plumbing is higher than usual water pressure. Unfortunately, many homeowners don't realize the risks this can cause. You can have plumbing fixtures become damaged, pipe connections start to leak, or even pipes bursting. One way that pressure on your pipes can be alleviated is through an expansion tank on your water heater. Here is what you need to know about what it does and can benefit your home.

Correcting Fluctuations In Pressure

You may not think that your home's water heater is the cause of water pressure problems, but it's all due to thermal expansion. When the temperature of the water gets hotter, it will occupy more space inside the tank. This causes the water pressure to increase before it leaves the tank and goes through the plumbing in your home. If your home's plumbing has a closed water system, meaning the water only flows in and not out from your municipal water source, the water pressure has nowhere to go.

While you may think that the solution is to allow the water to flow back out of the home, this is likely not an option. Municipal water sources often require closed systems so that the main water distribution center does not become flooded with water leaving people's homes. This causes homeowners to find their own solutions to fix the problem.

Installing An Expansion Tank

The best way to correct water pressure issues is by using an expansion tank. The concept is that the expanding water will have a place to go when it gets too hot, so it will flow into the expansion tank. Hot water is used from the main hot water heater tank instead of the expansion tank, so you will always get the hottest water possible. When the tank's water level goes down, the water is refilled by the extra water that went into the expansion tank. Overall, the system helps reduce pressure in the tank without wasting water or having it flow back to the municipal source, making it a great option to retrofit onto an existing hot water tank.

Do you think your home can benefit from a water heater expansion tank? Reach out to a plumbing service for assistance. They can take a look at your water pressure, determine if you have a problem, and come up with the correct solution. If an expansion tank is necessary, they can make the proper recommendation and install it for you.