hot water heater blanket in a tight space

Old 09-21-08, 12:19 AM
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hot water heater blanket in a tight space

Whats the best way to insulate a hot water heater that is located against a wall.

I'm trying to put a blanket on my water heater but don't know what to do about it being up against a wall. There isn't enough space between the wall and the heater to get the blanket between (maybe 1/4-1/2 inch). I'm thinking I'll tape the blanket to the heater right at the wall on each side, so I'll not tape the blanket to itself as all the directions suggest. This will leave an open gap of at least a few inches, will the blanket be totally ineffective with such an open gap?

Also this is going to be a real feet of gymnastics, the heater is in a corner, up against one wall and about 5 inches from the other, so to reach the back I have to pull the blanket and the tape and my hands through the 5 inch gap and around the corner and somehow see what I'm doing...

At it is, there will be gaps and seams all over the place since this is a god-awful hydro-heat system, it has pipes coming out the sides as well as being gas, so a big open area in the insulation for access to that.

My other option is to move the heater a few inches. That sounds like a nightmare to me considering I'm not much of a heavy lifter or plumber and would have to adjust the flue and all the various pipes running in and out of it.

I'm beginning to think the insulation is as good as useless. But I've already purchased it so may as well use it. And the heater itself is undersized for the job, so I need to do something.

Sorry for the long post with a simple question. I have no skill for brevity.
Old 09-21-08, 04:38 AM
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I wouldn't waste your time with the blanket. Modern hot water heaters have good insulation in the jacket. The blanket is nothing but a waste of time.
Old 09-21-08, 07:06 AM
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I replaced my hot water heater a couple of years ago. The literature that came with the heater said that the warrantee would be voided if a blanket was installed.
Old 09-21-08, 10:48 AM
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And if I am correct, You cannot insulate the bottom third (aprox) of the water heater when it is a gas heater.

Sounds like too much work for not enough insulation to me.
Old 09-21-08, 03:32 PM
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The amount of energy saved by a blanket on a water heater made in the last ten years probably won't even pay for the blanket over the life of the water heater.

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