water heater insulation

Discussion in 'HVAC Heating & Cooling' started by molo, Sep 7, 2007.

  1. molo

    molo Member

    Messages:
    845
    Location:
    cold new york
    Regarding water heater insulation, I'm wondering what the difference in operating cost is when the heater is in a cool area (doesn't freeze) vs an area that is kept at a comfortable temp.

    TIA,
    Molo
  2. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    There are to many variables to say accurately. The age of the heater, the amount of insulation used when Mfg., the temp of the room it is in.

    If it is going to be in a unheated shed then I would get a thermal reflective bubble blanket and a batts blanket for it.
  3. molo

    molo Member

    Messages:
    845
    Location:
    cold new york
    The water heater I'm referring to does have the insulation underneath the thin metal sleeve. I'm wondering if puting additional insulation around the
    unit will help, or if the additional insulation is insignificant?

    Molo
  4. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    Is it in a unheated shed?
  5. CHH

    CHH New Member

    Messages:
    225
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Put your hand on the water heater shell. Does it feel significantly warm? Better yet, measure the temperature of the metal shell. If it is more than a few degrees warmer than the surroundings, add insulation. Do the test early in the morning when the space around the heater is at it's coolest.
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,825
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    heater

    Read all the lables on the outside of the heater. Some manufacturers specifically say not to use a thermal blanket on the outside of the heater. Heat loss is a function of the temperature difference between the ambient air and the water heater's temperature. So the cooler room is going to cost some additional electrical consumption, but probably not a great deal.
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