Water Expansion

July 31, 2012 | 1 Comment

Water Expansion – Ice water vs steam and how do they expand?

There’s a lot of questions about water expansion such as:

“Why do my water pipes expand and split when turning to ice?”

“What causes a Hot Water Cylinder to explode if fitted incorrectly?”

The answer to this is just below and also shown in the picture.

Expanding Water

Water Expansion

First of all we’re going to tell you about hot water and the effect this has.  Then we’re going to explain all about when water turns to ice.

When reading most articles,  you will always find its like reading a complete book before it gets to the point.  With us it’s made easier to understand.

We are going to talk about the everyday cylinders you will find in a standard house.  Once the cylinder is fitted you will normally find that the Immersion Heater is set to about 64°.  This is the correct heat but when the stat goes faulty then you may find that the water over heats and comes out of the Expansion Pipe.  This is because from 70° the water starts to expand, and as shown in the picture, gives you an insight to the amount of expansion taking place.  This is why it is very important to have an Expansion Pipe going to the tank, normally located in the attic.

Remember this:  No Expansion Pipe and water over heating = Could lead to an explosion (depending on the force and the strength of the cylinder).

When water turns to ice, there’s a 10% expansion which starts to take place at .  This will explain why when there’s a bad winter you may come across a few burst pipes. This is due to the expansion of the water after (even though burst pipes are normally found from about -8° or more).

Always remember that water is at its finest at and either way it can make a difference in the expansion of water.

If you have any further questions then please ask us below and we will do our best to help.   I hope this helps answer the un-answered questions you’ve been asking yourself for years.



1 Comment so far

  1. Water Damage Restoration Gloucester Services on August 6, 2012 11:02 am

    In my opinion one of the important driving factors for the expansion of ice is the thermal expansion which results in the expansion of the water and steam.

Name (required)

Email (required)


Speak your mind

RSS Image

If you Like our Blog then we would appreciate a +1.

Welcome to My Blog. I Hope you enjoy My Plumbing site as Much as i will enjoy yours.

Want to advertise here then please feel free to make an enquiry.

Plumbing Resources