Prepare your hot water pipes to reduce heat loss. Raise water temperatures two to four degrees Fahrenheit by insulating hot water pipes. Not only will this allow you to lower your water temperature setting, but you will benefit by not having to wait long for hot water from a faucet or shower, helping to conserve water.
While you can hire a contractor to insulate your hot water pipes, you might consider doing this on your own with instructions, tips and tricks from the U.S. Department of Energy.
Measure the pipes. Starting at the water heater, measure lengths of insulation to cover all accessible hot water pipes, especially the first three feet of pipe from the water heater. Also insulate the cold water inlet pipes for the first three feet.
- Cut and secure the pipe sleeve. Cut the insulation to lengths needed then secure it – every foot or two – with tape, wire or wire cable clamps.
- Determine the type of insulation to use and how much will be needed based on pipe length and size. Match the pipe sleeve’s inside diameter to the pipes outside diameter for a snug fit.
- On gas water heaters, keep insulation at least six inches from the flue and follow manufacturer’s instructions carefully. If pipes are within eight inches of the flue, the safest choice is to use one-inch thick fiberglass pipe wrap and secure it to the pipe with wire or aluminum foil tape.