Most people consider a cold shower an emergency situation. Especially in winter. Freezing temperatures can wreak havoc on a water heater just like on any other pipe or fixture in your home.
Here’s the good news. There’s a really easy way to keep a freezing shower happening to you. I’m going to show you how to install an insulation blanket on your water heater to keep it flowing with hot water.
What is a Water Heater Insulation Blanket?
A water heater insulation blanket is a temperature-regulating cover for your water heater. It is made of thermal insulation materials (like fiberglass) that wrap around the water heater, keeping it warm in cold or freezing temperatures.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, insulating your water heater can reduce standby heat loss by 25 to 45 percent. This is a savings of 7 to 16 percent in water heating costs.
Not only can this potentially save you from an expensive repair, but it saves enough water-heating energy to pay for itself in a year. Energy-saving foam or fiberglass blankets are available in various sizes. So you should be able to find one for every size water heater. The cost is only about $20 to $50 and you can add the blanket yourself.
Just follow the below steps.
How to Install Water Heater Insulation Blanket
- On a gas water heater, turn the gas control knob to the OFF position and close the gas shutoff valve.
- On an electric water heater, shut off power at the main service panel.
- With waterproof duct tape, fasten the top of the insulating blanket to the top of the tabnk.
- Tape the edges of the blanket together to form a neat, vertical seam. Do NOT cover the top of the tank.
- Use a utility knife to cut away all insulation from around the access panels, relief valve, drain valve, control panel, and the space between the tank and the floor.
- Turn the gas or electricity back on and restart the heater.
BONUS TIP: To prevent heat loss, you can also insulate runs of hot water pipes that pass through unheated areas of your home with adhesive-backed foam, fiberglass tape, or pre-slit foam tubes secured with duct tape. For pipe insulation, it’s not necessary to turn off the gas or electricity first.
As you can see, learning how to install a water heater insulation blanket is simple. Make sure you have some basic tools handy and about 30 minutes of time. That’s all it takes to save money, prevent freezing problems, and ensure that you don’t end up taking a cold shower in the dead of winter.
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