The cold season is finally here and we all have to get ready. People have to prepare their swimming pools for closing. We also have to prepare the plumbing system for the cold season. The cold season is not only hard on our bodies; it’s also hard on the plumbing system. One particular plumbing device is deeply affected by the cold season. This is the home hot water heater. The hot water heater is used to heat cold water in the house. The main reason why the water heater is very much affected by the cold season is due to standby heat loss. The most affected model is the one that comes with a storage tank for holding the heated water. The tank suffers heavy standby heat loss during the cold season. This is the main reason why you should prepare your water heater for the cold season; to minimize standby heat loss during the chilly weather conditions. The newer models have built-in insulation but the older models are quite “naked.” This is how you should prepare your old water heater for the cold fall and winter seasons.
Check The R Value
If your water heater is ten years or older, then you have an insulation problem on your hands. These old water heaters have very little insulation in their hot water storage tanks. Such water heaters lose a lot of heart during the cold season. To determine the insulation level in your hot water heater, check the label for the R value. The R value indicates the thermal resistance of the hot water heater. Old water heaters have R values in the single digits but the newer models with built-in insulation have R values in the mid to high 20s. If the R value in your water heater is 8 or lower, then you have to insulate the tank during the cold season. Water heaters with R values between 10 and 20 are very confusing. Sometimes it’s not necessary to insulate such water heaters because the cost and time of insulation is not worth it. Insulating such water heaters can also cause problems to the heating components. You should consult a professional plumber before insulating such water heaters.
Cover With An Insulating Blanket
If the R value in your old water heater is less than 10, then you need to cover the hot water tank with an insulating blanket. You can buy an insulating blanket from your local hardware store and do the insulation yourself. You will need to mark all the valves, vents, and electrical components so that you can cut out these parts in your insulating blanket. You can now proceed to wrap the whole tank with the insulating blanket and hold it securely with tape. Insulating a water heater is a 2-man job but you can also try to do it alone.
You can also decide to upgrade to a new water heater with built-in insulation to avoid energy loss during the cold season. The newer models have high R values and are slightly bigger to accommodate the built-in insulation. You can also inquire about Townsville tankless water heaters and buy one. A tankless water heater does not require insulation because it does not have a hot water storage tank.
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