Why Water Heaters Need Insulation in the Winter

Get Your Hot Water Heater Ready for Winter

Homeowners may need to insulate their water heaters in the winter to prevent heat loss and keep utility bills low. The water heater is one of the most important pieces of home hardware because it provides the home with hot water for bathing, cleaning, and other essential tasks. During the winter, cold temperatures may put extra strain on the water heater, which causes energy bills to rise. 

This blog post discusses why homeowners should add insulating water heaters to their winter to-do list. Preparing the water heater for the coldest months of the year will help homeowners save money and even improve the water heater’s lifespan. Failing to insulate the water heater can lead to unnecessary spending on energy bills and increase the home’s carbon footprint. 

Why is Water Heater Insulation Important?heater

Water heaters are often located in the home’s basement or garage, where the temperatures may fall below freezing during the winter. Because the air and water entering the water heater are colder than normal in the winter, it takes more energy for the water heater to heat and keeps the water warm. Both electric water heaters and gas water heaters can benefit from an extra layer of insulation during the cold winter months. 

The benefits of insulating a water heater in the winter include improved efficiency, saving money on utility bills, decreased wear and tear on the unit, and having more hot water when it is needed. The hot water tank contains gallons of water pre-heated to be available whenever the homeowners need it. While the water sits in the tank, it can lose some of its heat. This is called standby heat loss, and insulation can also help decrease it.

Do All Water Heaters Need Added Insulation?

There are multiple factors for homeowners to consider when considering whether or not they need to insulate their water heater. New water heaters are engineered with better insulation than older models. The older the water heater is, the more likely it is to need insulation, especially in the winter. Aging water heaters can also be less efficient overall, and adding insulation can help. 

The R-value of the water heater is a unit of measurement used to indicate how well-insulated the hot water tank is. The higher the R-value, the better the hot water heater is insulated. If the R-value of the water heater is less than 24, the homeowners should insulate it to promote more efficient performance. The R-value is often listed on the manufacturer’s sticker or manual. 

How to Insulate a Water Heater

insulationTwo common water heater insulation methods are water heater blankets and reflective foil. Water heater blankets are typically made from fiberglass, mineral wool, or vinyl foam and tightly wrap around the water tank. The water heater blanket keeps water warm by helping to reduce the water’s heat loss. It is important to ensure water heater blankets are securely fastened and fit tightly around the water tank for optimal insulation efficiency. 

Reflective foil is another popular material used for water heater insulation. Reflective foil can be found in various sizes and shapes and works by reflecting heat back into the water tank. It is important to ensure reflective foil insulation is installed correctly and sealed with no gaps for the best performance. Homeowners should consult a qualified professional if unsure which water heater insulation material best suits their needs. 

About Water Heaters Only, Inc.

Water Heaters Only, Inc. is a family-owned and operated company that has been serving Phoenix, AZ, and the surrounding areas for over five decades. They provide flat rate pricing, same-day service, and financing. Call them today for water heater services in Phoenix, AZ