This blog aims to highlight the various different kinds of thermal pipe insulation, and highlight their particular strengths and weaknesses.
Choosing the right product for your application helps to avoid wasting money, and understanding more about what you are doing helps you to avoid making mistakes.
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Product Highlight: Eurobatex Class 0 - Quality Assured at a cellular level
Eurobatex Class 0: Premium Quality Rubber Pipe Insulation
Eurobatex Class 0 is the first product of its type in the UK market to be able to declare a test result of BL - S2, d0 to the new Euroclass fire ratings in tubular form, and B - S3, d0 to the new Euroclass fire ratings in sheet form.
Eurobatex was also one of the first companies in Europe to receive approval to use the CE Mark, in accordance with the specifications laid out in EN 14304.
Eurobatex is particularly suitable for the thermal insulation of pipework on refrigeration, air conditioning and heating systems. It is dust and fibre free, HCFC free, and has an Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) of 0 as well as a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of Zero. Furthermore Eurobatex Class 0 contains active Microbial resistance throughout its cell structure as part of its formulation, making it ideal for use in hospital applications or applications where a sterile environment is required.
Eurobatex products are manufactured by Union Foam in Italy,
who are one of Europe's oldest and most respected manufacturers of flexible
elastomeric foam insulation. The range available consists of tubes, both as 2m
lengths and continuous coils, sheet and with a variety of facings. Union Foam
also manufactures a range of EPDM rubbers that are suitable for the insulation
of solar thermal pipework.
Eurobatex Class 0 has a temperature range of -45°C to
+105°C, with its fine cell structure giving it a thermal conductivity of
0.034W/m.K @ 0°C. This, when combined with its integral vapor barrier and high
emissivity surface make it an excellent choice for condensation control on
chilled water pipework.
It's good, stable thermal insulation performance also make
the product an ideal choice for energy conservation applications on heating systems,
minimizing heat loss on domestic, industrial and commercial central heating
pipework. You can choose from Unslit, PreSlit of Self Seal tubes - the choice
Frost protection is another area where Eurobatex makes an
excellent choice. When using the appropriate thickness to correspond to the
size of pipe, Eurobatex will provide effective frost protection to give a
minimum of 12 hours down to -6°C in accordance with water Byelaw 49.
Eurobatex Class 0 comes in a range of products broad enough to
suit a vast range of applications; offering a flexible approach to Class 0 pipe
Next up in the series we are doing on pipe insulation is "flexible foams"; a category that includes polyethylene and expanded nitrile rubber.
Polyethylene Pipe Insulation Climaflex pipe insulation is the UK's leading brand for polyethylene pipe insulation. This is the grey foam that most people are familiar with, the kind you would traditionally find in garden centres for example. Polyethylene is the cheapest, widely available product in the market. People very often wrongly assume cheap means poor quality, this is not the case with a brand such as Climaflex. It has a thermal conductivity of 0.034 W/m.K at 0°C which is broadly equal to that of any other flexible foam, and it also has a much higher "μ factor" than other foams, making it more resistant to moisture ingress. These facotrs make it ideal for use around the home, being easy to work with and providing good insulation. The material can be purchased in 1m and 2m lengths, and is available in wall thicknesse…
Our Beginners Guide series of blogs will look at the common areas of pipe insulation lagging that you will want to look at when choosing your product. This guide will be of most interest to the DIY installers, but some of our later guides will cover more complex products and areas of application.
One of the things we get asked about a lot is what the dimensions quoted for pipe insulation actually mean. You will always see three measurements quoted when describing pipe insulation; Wall Thickness, Bore Size and Length.
In the below diagram, A is the "Bore" and B is the "Wall".
Wall thickness is very simply how much insulation you have; so for example if you have 13mm Wall pipe insulation, then that means you have 13mm of insulation on either side of your pipe. This thickness is very often one of the most important part of your decision; too thin and you might not get the results you are looking for but too thick and it might not fit between your pipe and the wall.
With the cold weather approaching we thought it would be a good idea to touch on how best to protect your pipes from frost this winter.
When dealing with frost protection on pipes inside a building your aim with insulating them is to delay the onset of freezing for as long as possible; it is not possible to guarantee a pipe will not freeze by insulation alone. The better the insulation, and the thicker the insulation, the longer you will give yourself. Under normal circumstances you aim to give yourself about 8-10 hours protection against sub zero temperatures. With pipes inside a home this is usually long enough to be sure the pipes will not freeze.
Ice formation inside the pipes will lead to an increase in pressure. As the water tries to flow this pressure will increase, and eventually will lead to the pipes bursting. A burst pipe can cause a lot of problems, not least of which is a lot of damage to your property and a lot of expense incurred.