All gas powered water heaters come with special vents to safely carry exhaust fumes out of your home. Of course, things aren't quite that simple, owing to the fact that there are a variety of different vent types available today. If you would like to boost your understanding of this basic water heater component, read on. This article will introduce you to the three main types of vent.
This is the most basic- and thus the oldest- type of vent for a water heater. Basically it amounts to a long pipe leading upward from of the water heater's combustion chamber, through your house, and out the top of the roof. The idea here is simple: because exhaust gases carry residual amounts of heat from the combustion process, they will naturally move upwards through the pipe. This movement has another key benefit, in that it produces a certain amount of suction at the base of the system, thus helping to pull fresh air to the burners.
Direct vents are where things start to get a little more sophisticated and complex. One principal difference between direct vents and atmospheric vents is that a direct vent makes use of an auxiliary component known as the draft hood. The draft hood consists of a flared metal pipe positioned just above the water heater's exhaust flue. The draft hood allows the vent to draw in more air, thereby increasing the velocity at which the exhaust gases rise upward out of the home.
The draft hood places another key role where safety is concerned: preventing the phenomenon known as backdraft. This involves exhaust gases that begin to flow back down into the room with the water heater. This can easily happen with atmospheric vents if the pipe becomes misaligned. It is also important to note that direct vents do not suck in fresh combustion air from the room in which the water heater is located. Instead, a second pipe is utilized to draw in air from outdoors.
Power vents, as you can probably guess from their name, utilize a powered system to increase the velocity of exhaust gas flow. This powered system consists of a fan located inside of the vent pipe. The benefit of this is that the outflow system no longer has to consist of a straight line of pipes moving directly upward. The powered fan allows the venting system to incorporate right angles--and thus greatly increases the number of places where the water heater can be located within the home.
For more information, you will want to contact a company such as Vets 4 You Plumbing Heating & Air.
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