If you live in a rural area and depend on a well for most or all of your water, it is important to have a clear understanding of both the function of your pressure tank and the differences between two of the more common types of that tank. Specifically, the galvanized and sealed diaphragm pressure tanks are popular and serve a variety of needs. As a responsible homeowner, it only makes sense that you should be aware of the information discussed below.
The Role Of A Pressure Tank
A pressure tank exists in order to provide enough water pressure to the pump inside the well to produce adequate water flow through the use of compressed air. When functioning properly, they also maintain a certain amount of water in reserve. As the water leaves the well and is forced toward the pipes in your home, you will never have to wonder if there is enough water for your needs. However, if the water flow isn't as strong as it used to be or if it seems to stop and start at times, it might mean that the pressure tank is impaired.
Repairing it is often possible, but if you have been using the same component for a prolonged period of time, you might want to consider replacing it. As a result, you should discuss the situation with your well expert and learn about two common types of pressure tanks, as discussed in the next passages.
The Galvanized Steel Pressure Tank
The galvanized steel pressure tank is thought to be the oldest style. As you expect from the above information, it uses compressed air to force water into the well system. However, it does so without using the pump, which means that the pump itself can often be expected to last longer.
Unfortunately, one known issue with this type of pressure tank is that there is the potential for the unit itself to become too damaged over years of use for additional work. That is due to the fact that the water and air within the unit are not divided and are constantly trying to occupy the same space. While the galvanized tank has the advantage of having been used for many years, it is also plagued by the inefficiency of the water and air interaction. Fortunately, it can often be used for many years before problems occur.
The Sealed Diaphragm Tank
At the other end of the spectrum and with newer technology is the sealed diaphragm pressure tank. It consists of two separate tanks, one for the air and another for the water, so the issues associated with its galvanized counterpart are not common. The two units are divided by rubber and when the water level increases, it does so because the rubber forces it upward and allows it to enter the rest of the plumbing.
However, it's important to point out that some homeowners have reported issues with the rubber folding into itself and/or coming apart from the walls. Both can do significant damage to the pump, tank or well and you might not notice until it is too late.
In conclusion, pressure tanks are essential to the function and usability of your well and there is not a one-size-fits all answer when you are choosing a new unit. Therefore, when you need to replace or upgrade the pressure tank in your well, you need to be familiar with the pertinent details of two common types of tanks in order to make an informed decision.