Because water heaters can be inefficient, it is important to insulate your hot water tank with a water heater blanket. This can save you approximately 4 to 9 percent in water heating costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Your local True Value hardware store has a selection of precut water heater blanket kits to choose from. The kits include the insulation blanket and tape to fasten it on. Simply follow the directions to wrap the blanket around the water heater, making necessary cuts with a utility knife to leave access panels, valves, and controls uncovered. Fasten the blanket in place with the provided tape.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions carefully. If not installed correctly, a blanket can be a potential fire hazard on a gas water heater. Keep the blanket away from the flue and make sure the air to the burner isn’t obstructed.
Insulate pipes using pipe insulation kits to also help save energy and lower water-heating bills. Before insulating, measure the pipe to be sure you get the right fit. Make sure the pipe insulation kit you choose includes adhesive tape or contact cement for sealing. The most common pipe insulation is a tubular foam sleeve slit lengthwise. Tubes without slits are designed for installation over new piping, but they can easily be slit with a sharp utility knife. Open the pipe insulation along the slit, press it onto the pipe, and seal it with an adhesive tape or contact cement to prevent summertime condensation.
Good job! You have now taken the steps to ensure your water heater is operating at its peak performance.