Insulating Pipes is Easy and Environmentally Conscious
Unsurprisingly, insulating your pipes can have a huge economic and environmental benefit. In insulating pipes that carry hot water from a water heater to various faucets, homeowners ensure that the contents remain hot throughout the journey. The delivered water temperature can be as much as seven degrees higher than with uninsulated pipes. This will allow you to turn down your water heater, saving both money and energy. Homeowners can expect to see a cost reduction of between 3% and 5%. Though the savings are small (between $8 and $12 per year, depending on your usage), the environmental payoff is worth the effort.
The process itself is remarkably simple—assuming you have easy access to the pipes. Insulation is available as polyethylene or neoprene foam, as well as fiberglass wrap. The insulation itself is inexpensive (generally under $2 per six feet of foam insulation), but if you hire somebody to install the insulation for you, the overall cost will increase. In fact, the cost of installation can easily overtake your savings; even paying $100 for installation will provide a ten-year return on the investment.
Thus, insulating pipes yourself make a lot of sense. Depending on how much pipe you have to insulate, you can spend as little as $8 to get the same result as hiring a contractor. The process is fast, simple, and requires a basic knowledge of the materials used.