How to Insulate PVC Water Pipe

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PVC pipe is a useful material for cold water plumbing applications. It is inexpensive and easy to work with, making it the choice for many do-it-yourself homeowners. To protect your investment of time, effort and money it is important to insulate PVC pipe so that it is not damaged from freezing temperatures in the winter. There are a few simple insulation methods that you can utilize on your PVC plumbing.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic foam, wool felt or fiberglass pipe jackets
  • Blanket insulation
  • Self-sticking insulating tape
  • Duct tape
  • Slip insulating sleeves over the longer runs of PVC pipe you need to insulate. They are split for easy installation. A small amount of duct tape can be used to secure the sleeves. For protection against extremely cold temperatures, first wrap some electric heat tape on the pipe according to the manufacturer's directions, and then cover it with the insulating sleeves.

  • Wrap traditional blanket insulation around pipes if you have some lying around and don't want to invest in insulating sleeves. Cut the blanket insulation into strips and wrap the PVC pipe with it. Peel back the insulation a little so that you can tape it along the seams to hold it in place. Do not compress the insulation as you tape it; this will reduce its insulating effectiveness.

  • Wrap short sections of pipe and fittings with self-sticking insulating tape. Simply wind this tape around these areas in a spiral fashion. This type of tape works well in oddly shaped and difficult-to-reach areas.

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