Date : December 4th, 2018Posted By : admin

Difference Between Rubber and Metallic Expansion Joints

An expansion joint is a unit that is capable of relieving the overall stress present in any piping system. In addition to this, the replacement joints are also responsible for preventing flange gaskets from getting crushed easily. However, most of the times, it becomes a confusing state to select the best replacement joint –rubber or metallic expansion joints.

A rubber replacement joint is referred to as a flexible connector that is made out of the synthetic or natural elastomers as well as fabric materials. If needed, the internal metallic reinforcements of the rubber expansion joints are designed towards providing relief from the existing stress in the available piping systems which might occur due to mechanical vibrations and thermal movements.

At the same time, the metallic expansion joints are the flexible bellows or elements that are constructed out of a relatively thin gauge material (mostly stainless steel). The metallic expansion joints have been designed for the purpose of absorbing mechanical as well as thermal movements that are expected in the given service.

Advantages of Using Metallic Expansion Joints

There are several advantages of using metallic expansion joints for most piping systems out there. Here are some of the major points you should know about:

  • Temperature: The rubber expansion joints that have a standard construction, as well as materials, tend to have an upper-temperature range of around 230-degree Fahrenheit. However, most of the manufacturers out there are able to provide special constructions or materials having the temperature range of around 400-degree Fahrenheit.

At the same time, the metal expansion joints are known to provide a greater temperature range of around -420-degree F to +1800-degree F. However; most manufacturers tend to reduce the overall working pressure at higher temperatures.

  • Pressure: Depending on the given diameter, the rubber expansion joints are able to afford pressure capabilities of around 250-psi with the full vacuum rating. At the same time, the metal expansion joints are designed for handling pressures of around 1000-psi. The overall strength and agility of the metal materials tend to be major advantages over the rubber alternatives in high-pressure conditions & applications. However, the relative spring rates or the stiffness of the metal joints when coupled with the given thrust forces must be examined carefully. The anchors or the piping systems should be designed towards handling the overall combined load.

It can be concluded that metal expansion joints tend to be more frequently used in comparison to the rubber expansion joints. This is primarily because of the application conditions including the pressures and temperatures. Some of the experts in the given industry believe that metal joints are four times larger than the available rubber expansions joints in the market. For preventing the strains or pressures to be applied to the expansion joints, the manufacturers of the same aim at developing several types of supporting structures that can enhance the overall effectiveness of the given joints.

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