Why Does an Expansion Joint Need to Absorb Heat?


Expansion joints are an innovation that changed the face of construction. Before they were built into large structures like concrete slabs, building faces and pipelines, these systems would crack under stress.

Expansion joints are assemblies designed to safely absorb the contraction and heat-induced expansion of construction materials. You will find them between areas of bridges, skyscrapers, railroad tracks, sidewalks, ships, piping systems and other structures. These systems contract and expand over time from cooling and warming during seasonal changes as well as from other heat sources. The ability of the expansion joint to absorb this heat allows structures to remain intact and avoid cracking under changes in temperature. These joints are also called “compensators” because they compensate for thermal activity and are very important to the safety of a construction framework.


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