Expansion tank query

Is the black top tank the expansion tank? If it is, is the 'insulated brown pipe' that runs from directly under it (next to the white pipe), horizontally, meant to be connected to anything? I know it's difficult to see from photo due to shadows but it's just dangling in mid air. Roofers messed about the overflow pipe so wondering if they did something here as well. Upstairs heaters not heating up as much as downstairs heaters.


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  • grumbler
    grumbler Posts: 58,591
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    edited 2 November 2023 at 8:30AM
    Are you sure that the tank isn't disused?  What's the bigger tank below?
    IIRC, there have to be four (?) pipes connected to an expansion tank - CH system, mains water (ball valve, top up), overflow pipe, and (?) some vent pipe at the top.
    We are born naked, wet and hungry...Then things get worse. :(

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  • Section62
    Section62 Posts: 7,463
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    PoGee said:
    Is the black top tank the expansion tank? If it is, is the 'insulated brown pipe' that runs from directly under it (next to the white pipe), horizontally, meant to be connected to anything? I know it's difficult to see from photo due to shadows but it's just dangling in mid air. Roofers messed about the overflow pipe so wondering if they did something here as well. Upstairs heaters not heating up as much as downstairs heaters.

    If it is the central heating feed and expansion pipe then it would be normal to have four pipe connections (water supply, overflow/warning pipe, feed (to CH), & expansion).  There appears to be five pipes in total going towards the upper tank... which could suggest (a) one is redundant and therefore not connected to something, or (b) for some reason your setup is different, or possibly (c) that the upper tank isn't the F&E one.

    What makes the latter possibility slightly more likely is that the overflow/warning pipe (unusually) appears to discharge into the lower cistern.  Which is a big no-no if the upper one is the F&E tank as it would mean contaminated water from the CH system would be able to get into what should be kept as clean (if not potable) water.  So if it is the F&E tank you'll need to get the overflow/warning pipe re-routed so it discharges correctly and safely outside the house.

    There is another possibility - if the house has (or had) a gravity-fed shower then some bright person might have had the idea of having a smaller cold water storage cistern at a higher level to give better pressure/flow for the shower.  That isn't something you'd normally see, but might explain why the pipework is as it is, and why someone thought it Ok to discharge the overflow/warning pipe into the cold water storage cistern.

    More pictures from different angles would help....
  • born_again
    born_again Posts: 13,520
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    edited 2 November 2023 at 8:57AM
    https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6481825/loft-insulation-smell#latest


    Have you had a look in the tank to see whats in there?
    Life in the slow lane
  • Jonboy_1984
    Jonboy_1984 Posts: 1,187
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    Assume you have been through the normal bleeding of the upstairs radiators?

     On one system at a building I worked in, we had to bleed the two highest radiators once a week in winter as they kept collecting all the excess air in the (admittedly large at 28 radiator) system.
  • PoGee
    PoGee Posts: 524
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    Not sure at all about this, grumbler. I'll call in a plumber.
  • PoGee
    PoGee Posts: 524
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    Assume you have been through the normal bleeding of the upstairs radiators?

     On one system at a building I worked in, we had to bleed the two highest radiators once a week in winter as they kept collecting all the excess air in the (admittedly large at 28 radiator) system.
    Yes, I'll try that first, before calling a plumber and check what's in that wee tank also.
  • grumbler
    grumbler Posts: 58,591
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    This white plastic(?) pipe going from the small tank above to the big one below is very strange. Possibly, @Section62 is right and the small tank has nothing to do with CH.
    We are born naked, wet and hungry...Then things get worse. :(

    .withdrawal, NOT withdrawel ..bear with me, NOT bare with me
    .definitely, NOT definately ......separate, NOT seperate
    should have, NOT should of
    .....guaranteed, NOT guarenteed
  • ThisIsWeird
    ThisIsWeird Posts: 4,458
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    That wee tank doesn't appear to have a lid, so could you rubber-band your phone to a pole (I know you don't have a selfie-stick on you), set it to 'video' and have a gander? Not only at the contents, but all 4 sides.
  • PoGee
    PoGee Posts: 524
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    edited 2 November 2023 at 9:54AM
    The overflow pipe from the big lower cold water tank was at floor level. The roofer chopped the end off when fitting fascias. I know I can push him to remedy this but as I'm hoping to have saved up enough for a combi, I didn't force him (he said - I'll send a plumber, but never did); in 2 minds about having a hole in the fascia when removing all pipework and tank for combi. There was also a pipe going out at upper roof height level, from the upper black tank, as I now recall - called a swan's neck, perhaps? The roofer took this away also so that dangling bit might be the 'swan's neck' attachment. I'll get into attic later to get better pictures.
  • PoGee
    PoGee Posts: 524
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    Below is a picture of how old roof looked, with curved pipe at top and cold water tank overflow pipe through fascia. Both no longer thereon new roof. Still to get into attic.
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