Stainless steel pipes and fittings: the importance of the correct insulation
Pipes and fittings for hot or cold water distribution systems must be lined with insulating material to keep the conveyed fluid at a constant temperature, by avoiding dispersions, and to maintain the efficiency of the installation.
The heat loss of a system which conveys hot water is influenced by different factors, like:
Internal temperature of the conveyed fluid and external temperature
Thickness and material of pipes and fittings
Use of suitable insulation-covers
A correct insulation is very important in order to prevent heat loss but even to contribute to the energy efficiency of the whole system and to avoid the formation of condensation which, in the long term, could jeopardize the tightness of the installation. Serious damages can be avoided with simple choices.
By focusing on the insulation of stainless steel systems, it is necessary to pay attention to the choice of the insulation material: it must be totally free of chlorine or its compounds, because the contact with these substances could damage the anti-corrosion properties typical of this metal.
The most used insulation materials are:
Closed-cell expanded polyethylene;
Elastomeric insulating materials.
Thermal insulation of stainless steel installations for hot water distribution offers different advantages. The correct insulation influences the energy consumption to keep the temperature of the conveyed fluid constant (hot or cold).
Besides, the insulation cover can soften the accidental shocks, it contributes in the acoustic insulation of the system and it can avoid the formation of condensation with the consequent corrosion.
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