Hot water copper pipe support and linear expansion


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Old 04-30-18, 05:25 AM
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Hot water copper pipe support and linear expansion

I've got a run of unsupported copper pipe in my basement coming from my water heater and ending at a wall, where it then proceeds up into the house. The pipe runs parallel and centered between the floor joists.

I took a section of hardwood I had laying around, about 4 inches wide x 3/4" thick and attached it to form a brace between the joists, and attached a copper pipe support to the brace at about 6 feet down from the start of the run.

I've been reading about copper expansion, and wonder if I snugged up my pipe support to tight. Is there a rule of thumb as to how much "play" there should be between the pipe support, pipe, and joist? I'm guessing it wouldn't be more than a 1/16" range of movement to allow linear expansion?

Don't want to rip it down and use wire hangers with foam, or plastic J's. Would like to tweak my installation and forget about it.
 
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Old 04-30-18, 09:52 AM
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There is very little movement with hot and cold water lines.
There is much more with hydronic heating lines.

You should have no problem with what you've done there.
 
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Old 04-30-18, 11:08 AM
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The expansion rate of copper tubing and pipe is low enough that allowances for expansion are usually not made in residential construction. If you're curious and want to do the math the expansion rate for copper tubing is 0.0000094" per inch of pipe per degree Fahrenheit.
 
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Old 04-30-18, 11:46 AM
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Thank you guys for the help
 
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Old 05-01-18, 10:11 AM
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The only time I'd worry about it is with longer (40+ foot) runs on hot water pipes. They have a tendency to expand a little, and you get the 'ping' sounds as the water pipe warms and cools. More of a nuisance than anything else.
 
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Old 05-01-18, 11:56 AM
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Good rule of thumb, thanks..Iím way below 40 ft so sounds like this project is done.
 
 

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