How to Insulate Your Water Lines

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In most homes the water heater is the second largest energy user. The bare copper pipes release heat into the air every time the hot water is being used. This cuts down on the efficiency of the pipe and slightly cools the hot water as it travels to the faucet. You can greatly increase the efficiency of the hot water pipes by adding modern foam-type insulation, that can be done by virtually anyone with do-it-yourself experience.

Things You'll Need

  • Foam pipe insulation
  • Utility knife
  • Tape measure
  • Measure the diameter of your water pipe with a a tape measure. Next, measure the approximate length of the pipe you will need covered, and add ten-percent to that total to allow for error.

  • Pick up your modern foam pipe insulation at any hardware store that conforms to your diameter measurement. This type of insulation will will have a horizontal slit down the center for easy application onto water pipes. get as many feet that you will need to completely cover the hot water pipe.

  • Spread the foam insulation at the split and wrap it over the water pipe. Cut the length to fit each section of pipe. Once in place, pull the plastic strips from the attachment tape and push the insulation together. The two pieces will stick together and create a bond completely enveloping the pipe.

Tips & Warnings

  • At corners, slightly overlap the insulation and cover the joint with duct tape to keep it securely in place.

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  • Photo Credit Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images
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