The name “expansion tank” has sometimes confused people concerning their boiler. An expansion tank isn’t a place to expand the amount of water the boiler holds so it can provide more heat. (That’s not how boilers work, anyway.) The expansion tank is a safety mechanism designed to maintain an even water pressure inside the main hot water tank so that it won’t overheat.
But even safety mechanism can have problems that will result in repair needs. When the expansion tank encounters trouble, it can lead to pressure spikes and leaking. If you need work on your expansion tank to restore your boiler’s operation, call DB Heating & Cooling and we’ll send a technician to help you with your heating in Westwood, NJ.
What Might Go Wrong with the Expansion Tank
Old boilers used to absorb pressure increases with an empty air pocket at the top of the tank; however, this allowed oxygen into the tank and promoted corrosion. The development of the expansion tank solved this issue. The expansion tank has two chambers divided by a diaphragm: a pipe from the main tank attaches to one side and lets water in; on the other side of the diaphragm is a chamber of air controlled with a valve. When water pressure increases, the water pushes against the diaphragm, which relives the pressure by serving as a cushion. The air valve allows air back in to push against the water and restore the original pressure level.
A common problem that an expansion tank can encounter is lack of proper air charge. It should have the right charge at installation; however, if the tank begins to develop an air leak, it can have too much water and too little air inside it. This risks the pressure in the main tank rising above 12 psi, at which point it can cause leaking to occur throughout the boiler system. You will need to have a technician rebalance the air and water, and add more air to the tank as necessary.
Another problem is tears in the diaphragm, which will cause water to leak into the air chamber and ruin the tank’s ability to regulate pressure. If your boiler starts to rumble and the temperature gauge shows it’s running too hot, shut down the system and call for repairs. A repair technician will discover if the expansion tank was responsible for the problem and repair it.
Call DB Heating & Cooling for Boiler Repairs
At DB Heating & Cooling, we specialize in boiler repairs of all kinds. No matter the work you need done on your boiler, our skilled technicians can solve the problem. Call us any time of the day or night for your heating in Westwood, NJ.