thermal expansion relief valve vs expansion tank

Thermal Expansion Relief Valve vs Expansion Tank – (EXPLAINED)

The thermal expansion relief valve, as well as the expansion tank, constitutes two of the most important parts of the pipes used to manage the expansion of heat. But how precisely do these two items of machinery vary from one another? In the following piece, Thermal Expansion Relief Valve vs Expansion Tank, we’ll examine both in more detail and discuss how they cooperate to control thermal expansion within systems of plumbing. Learn when to utilize both pieces of equipment in addition to their functions and significant distinctions. In this post, you can find such specifics.

What is Thermal Expansion and Why is it a Concern in Plumbing Systems?

The phenomenon of thermal expansion, which often excludes transitions between phases, is the propensity of matter to alter its form, area, quantity, and concentration in reaction to an increase or decrease in temperature.

Water increases as it is heated from a cold state. All home and business plumbing installations with tank-style water heaters experience this expansion of heat.

Thermal expansion, though typically not a concern, can result in excessive pressure of water and costly issues.

A household water system needs a broadening tank primarily to avoid damage from excessive water pressure, which is something over 80 psi.

Most of the time, water that is expanding just flows straight into a house’s primary source. However, the issue of the expansion of heat is getting worse.

Public water supply has become harder to manage as population growth has driven up water consumption.

Pressure controllers are currently required by building rules when strength reaches 80 psi, whereas backflow preventatives are occasionally needed to avoid cross contamination.

What is a Thermal Expansion Relief Valve and How Does it Work?

In order to safeguard the machinery and structure, thermal expansion relief valves are a safety mechanism used in fluid pipes and pipeline systems.

The heat relief valve opens to let go of certain fluids and reduce the temperature to a safe level when the warmth of a liquid causes an excessive amount of pressure to build up within an enclosed system.

Even if how much liquid there is does not change significantly, when the temperature rises significantly, the system tension may rise as a result.

Thermal relief valves work well to defend against such high pressure scenarios and prevent an explosion.

The use of temperature relief devices has several benefits, but the most important one is that it can assist in lowering the possibility of a fire or other damage caused by extremely high temperatures within an area.

These tools can also help in avoiding the overpressurization of boilers as well as other machinery parts, which is another advantage.

The tendency for temperature relief valves to prove less dependable than other forms of safety devices is one possible drawback. These valves also need to undergo routine testing and inspection.

Lastly, over time, dust or particle accumulation can make temperature relief valves susceptible to blockage.

What is an Expansion Tank and How Does it Work?

Another tiny tank, known as a water heater expansion container, is connected to the water heaters’ supply line. Expansion tanks function by balancing the system’s temperature.

A tiny tank with two portions is what is known as an expansion tank. Water is present on the other, which is also connected to the heating of the system’s tubes. The opposite side has compressed air and is dry.

The stress inside the system of heating rises when hot water is introduced. The growth tank’s diaphragm is forced downward by mounting pressure. As a result of the tank’s air being compressed, more water can enter.

Several Benefits are Offered by Thermal Expansion Tanks

  • Avoid pressure buildup-related leaks.
  • Added security should be provided in addition to the pressure relief valve on the reservoir heater.
  • Prevent spending money on flooding or pipe breaks.
  • Inexpensive to buy and set up.
  • Occupy little room.

Although Water Heater Expansion Tanks Provide Many Benefits, they Also have a Few Drawbacks

  • There are several parts that can fail.
  • Small setup mistakes may result in issues with the functioning of the system.

What are the Key Differences Between Thermal Expansion Relief Valve Vs Expansion Tank

What are the Key Differences Between Thermal Expansion Relief Valve Vs Expansion Tank?

Since it performs a similar purpose, the Thermal Expansion Relief Valve may replace the position of a device that heats the water expansion tank.

Both items reduce the extra pressure that thermal expansion causes in the piping network.

Each of these parts should be periodically examined for wear or damage since they both play a significant part in limiting the expansion of heat in the pipes.

The initial thing we might notice about their distinctions is how they seem. Small gas grill tanks, called expansion tanks, should be positioned above the heating system.


The temperature relief valve, on the other hand, is a small valve that is likewise mounted above the water’s heaters.

Devices called thermal expansion valves for relief are inserted into a home’s water system to guard against the destructive effects of heating and cooling.

Installation of expansion chambers in a property’s waters line permits the consumption of more water that is produced as an outcome of thermal expansion.

By enabling water to drain from the residence’s water pipe when the pressure becomes too high, thermally expanded relief valves reduce pressure.

Expansion tanks are used to store the extra water that is produced as a consequence of thermal expansion, which keeps the water tension from becoming too high.

Compared to expansion tanks, heating relief valves aren’t as costly, but they need greater upkeep and might not be as efficient in avoiding thermal expansion-related damage.

Whenever water gets heated, an expansion tank swells along with the steam, which is how they function. The force of the water is reduced, however, by facilitating the opening and shutting of a thermal expansion relieving valve.

When to Use a Thermal Expansion Relief Valve vs an Expansion Tank?

Although they are employed in various circumstances and for various purposes, thermal expansion valves for relief, as well as expansion chambers, are both able to be used for solving the same problem.

The right time to employ…

Thermal Expansion Relief Valve

  • For more compact pipes, when just a small amount of water needs to be warmed.
  • When there is less water force in the drainage line.
  • While installing takes up most of the space that is accessible.
  • When money is an issue, thermally expanded relief mechanisms are preferable over expansion tanks because they are often cheaper to purchase.

Expansion Tank

  • For bigger water lines where a significant amount of water has to be warmed.
  • If the plumbing system has a great water pressure level.
  • The pipe utilized in the water supply is particularly susceptible to harm from heat expansion.
  • When using a booster tank is required by local plumbing rules.

The decision among the two is based on the structure’s size, force rating, pipe type, regional plumbing regulations, and financial constraints.

Do Expansion Tanks and Expansion Valves Function Similarly


Do Expansion Tanks and Expansion Valves Function Similarly?

A heating element extension tank may be replaced with the Thermal Expansion Relief Valve since they both perform comparable roles. Both items reduce the extra pressure that the expansion of heat causes in the plumbing line.

Watch this one,

Video Credits – Walley Plumbing Company, LLC

You May Also Like

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *