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Old 06-24-2009, 08:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Water heater blankets - still worth it?

Hey guys.

I just replaced my old gas water heater with an "Energy Star" model (.62 efficiency rating.) Is it worth putting a blanket on this unit? The manual says that a blanket is not necessary, but acknowledges that some jurisdictions still require them. Would a blanket pay for itself in the 10 year lifetime of the water heater?

Also, I'm looking at reinsulating the pipes. Both the water heater and pipes are in an unfinished crawlspace. The temps get below freezing outside for most of the winter. Currently the pipes have that relatively thin slip-on insulating foam hanging on them, and I'd like to do it properly. Any suggestions?

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Old 06-24-2009, 10:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If you have a blanket, I'd use it. If not, I wouldn't buy one, but make something work.

As far as insulating your pipes, as long as it's warm out now, I'd be working on it for sure, otherwise you might just end up down there in the freezing temps replacing them.

You might also consider moving the whole setup, if you have the time/skills/money into a warmer part of the house?
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Old 06-24-2009, 11:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christ View Post
If you have a blanket, I'd use it. If not, I wouldn't buy one, but make something work.

As far as insulating your pipes, as long as it's warm out now, I'd be working on it for sure, otherwise you might just end up down there in the freezing temps replacing them.

You might also consider moving the whole setup, if you have the time/skills/money into a warmer part of the house?
Space is what's at the biggest premium. However, the water heater is in a section of the basement that has been separated from the rest with walls, so I've been considering just insulating that part of the basement. Also, the floor above is the bottom floor of the house, and that floor gets mighty cold in the winter. I'm considering installing insulation between the joists in the basement and sheetrocking that in.
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Old 06-25-2009, 12:06 AM   #4 (permalink)
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What's the water heater sitting on?
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Old 06-25-2009, 12:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
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What's the water heater sitting on?
It's on a concrete pad.
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Old 06-25-2009, 08:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I'd throw a blanket on it. They're cheap and you're talking about 10 years of wasted heat otherwise. Even if it doesn't help a ton, it sure is going to save you over 10 years.
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Old 06-25-2009, 01:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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And stick wood blocks under it... concrete leeches heat. Better to have an airgap under it, I think. Or just a solid (large, thick) piece of wood.

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