shower head
Real Estate & Around the House

Atmospheric Water Heaters: How To Identify and Its Various Parts

October 28, 2022

It is essential to know that water heater installation is a highly complicated process that requires professional expertise. It often requires a unique study of the fuel type, extraction rate, conversion issues, space, output, and efficiency. Only professionals can give reliable advice and educate their clients by answering questions like “What is an atmospheric water heater?” and “How does it function?”. Their extensive usage can be attributed to their low cost and energy-efficient operation of heating fluids.

What Are Atmospheric Water Heaters?

Water heaters are storage tanks that utilize natural gas to heat water. Regardless of the type, they all use energy to heat it to desired temperatures and then condense them. Then how is an atmospheric water heater different? They operate by venting the exhaust.

When gas-based fuels are burnt, the exhaust remains. Atmospheric heaters vent these gasses through a pipeline component made of metal. This component is located at the top of the tank and eliminates gasses as it is filled with hot air. Atmospheric heaters use this vent to properly regulate tank pressure for maximum fuel efficiency. The most common atmospheric heaters utilize propane gas and natural gas for burning operations.

Identification Spots of The Heater

Identification is a straightforward process. If you have a black gas line that runs through your water heater’s burner, your home uses an atmospheric water heater. These lines must have a shutoff valve through the burner. Apart from this traditional identification technique, you can also identify them in the following ways:

  • A metal draft pipe is located above the tank: The system’s main component makes the operation atmospheric by venting exhaust gasses. This pipe is usually made of aluminum, a key identifier, as other systems use black fans for propelling exhausts.
  • There must be a gap between the tank and vent pipe: This gap is responsible for pulling air from the atmosphere into the tank—another crucial aspect that sets it apart from other models.

Parts of A Water Heater

Since you know the answer to the question “what is an atmospheric water heater,” it is time to move on to locating the components of this unique heater. Most features like dip tubes and tank replacements are readily available with your local professional plumbing service, which can install fluid heaters through expert system analysis.

  • The tank: All water is received cold, which enters the storage component of the heater—the tank. It is sent down the dip tube located at the bottom. Through a valve separation, the waters are not mixed and are appropriately secured by 2-3 inch insulation.
  • Heater: After identifying cold water in the tank, the burner starts heating it using the burner shutoff valve that controls the gas line. It acts as a thermostat that adjusts the temperature to your liking.
  • Expansion tank: This safety component prevents bursts from pressure difference. Rest assured, they are always included when installing an atmospheric heater.
  • Pressure relief and drainage: Another safety component is the pressure relief valve that adjusts the pressure build-up in the tank. As in the name, the drainage valve was issued to drain the heated fluid during repairs.
  • Exhaust: Toxic exhaust needs to be eradicated from the house as safely and accurately as possible. The exhaust is precisely installed for this purpose. The fuel chimney is located at the bottom of the tank and extracts the black air outside the home.


Hopefully, the article above helped you understand everything you need to know about atmospheric water heaters and how they work. With an atmospheric water heater, you don’t need to worry about breakdowns for up to 15 years with proper maintenance. Make sure you consider the type of fuel in use, output requirements, space restrictions, and energy efficiency before choosing a reliable heater.

Leave a Reply