A water heater blanket, also known as a water heater cover, or heat jacket, is a money-saving cover used to prevent heat from escaping a hot water heater. The best water heater blankets will feature sturdy and durable construction, will be easy to install, and will include seal tape (Source).
Water heater blankets make your home more energy-efficient. Even if you have a modern water heater installed in your home, additional insulation will make it even more efficient, which will save you money. Insulating your hot water heater tank with the right water heater blanket will save you between 4 and 9 percent on water heating costs (Source).
To maintain safety, water heater blankets usually include some sort of fire-resistant layer. Water heater blankets can be found made of all sorts of materials ranging from reflective foils to denim. Most are generally pretty sturdy and lightweight, but there are definitely some things to watch for.
Water heater blankets can vary significantly in effectiveness and ease of installation. Before you go out and buy a water heater blanket, you should consider its size, price, and quality of its materials. It is also important to consider its weight, and how easy it is to install.
In this article, we will check out all the top-rated water heater blankets. All of the models in this review will help you save on energy costs, whether you are a homeowner, or renting an apartment.
Do Water Heater Blankets Really Work?
Table of Contents
- 1 Do Water Heater Blankets Really Work?
- 2 How Much Does A Water Heater Blanket Cost?
- 3 Comparing The Best Water Heater Blankets
- 4 1. Frost King SP57/11C Water Heater Blanket – Best Overall
- 5 2. Reflectix ST16025 Staple Tab Insulation Blanket – The Best Affordable Water Heater Blanket
- 6 3. Duck Brand 280464 Water Heater Insulation Blanket – The Best Heater Blanket For DIY Installation
- 7 4. SmartJacket Water Heater Blanket Insulation – The Best Water Heater Jacket for Larger Tanks
- 8 5. ESP Low-E SSR Water Heater Insulation Kit – The Best Fire-Resistant Water Heater Installation Blanket
- 9 How Many Types of Water Heater Blankets Are There?
- 10 Can You Save Money With A Hot Water Blanket?
- 11 How To A Wrap Blanket Over A Hot Water Heater
- 12 Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Water Heater Blanket
- 13 1. The R-Value
- 14 Water Heater Blanket Material
- 15 2. Heater Jacket Size
- 16 3. Thickness
- 17 Ready To Buy The Best Water Heater Blanket?
Water Heater Blankets help insulate your water heater so you can save on energy costs and make your household more energy efficient. Not only do they stop heat from escaping, but they’re also often made from fire-resistant material to ensure your safety.
How Much Does A Water Heater Blanket Cost?
Most water heater blanket rolls will cost you between $15 to $80. You can use pre-cut blankets available for specific water heater models without the need to purchase a full roll. However, a roll will also let you create cuttings for insulating water heater pipes if needed.
Comparing The Best Water Heater Blankets
|Frost King SP57/11C Water Heater Blanket|
|Reflectix ST16025 Staple Tab Insulation Blanket|
|Duck Brand 280464 Water Heater Insulation Blanket|
|SmartJacket Water Heater Blanket Ins|
|ESP Low-E® SSR Water Heater Insulation Kit|
1. Frost King SP57/11C Water Heater Blanket – Best Overall
To begin with, the easy-to-install fiberglass jacket features a foil covering on both sides. This makes it a better insulator, with a reflective value of 10. The product measures 3” x 48” x 75”, hence it may be used on most 60-gallon electric, gas, and oil water heaters.
If you would like to install the insulator on your own, the Frost King would be a great choice. In this regard, the product is relatively easy to install around water heaters. The product comes with a foil tape that should be used to secure it in place. With every purchase of this insulator, you will get installation instructions, which are comparatively easy to follow.
However, it is advisable to wear gloves while installing the jacket. This will protect your hands against irritation.
2. Reflectix ST16025 Staple Tab Insulation Blanket – The Best Affordable Water Heater Blanket
The various layers are availed in rolls and vary in widths and lengths. The first two layers, from the outside, are made of aluminum foil. The two layers have been proven to reflect about 97 percent of radiant heat. The two innermost layers of the blanket are made of insulating bubbles. As such, these help to prevent the loss of heat by conduction.
The central layer in the water heater blanket is made of polyethylene. This enhances the strength and reliability of the water heater jacket. For additional strength of the jacket, each of the individual layers is bonded to a layer of tough polyethylene. The blanket is mainly offered in dimensions of 16 x 25 inches.
However, you can manipulate the size to get the best fit for your water heater. This is because the product was designed for use in an array of applications, including the crowded locations, wall and metal buildings as well as in attics.
3. Duck Brand 280464 Water Heater Insulation Blanket – The Best Heater Blanket For DIY Installation
When it comes to construction quality, effectiveness, and durability, Duck Brand 280464 blanket is not different from the other products by this manufacturer. In this regard, this water heater jacket has been proven to prevent the loss of heat from heaters; hence save on heating bills.
Measuring 1.8 x 48 x 75 inches, the blanket is enough for 60-gallon tanks. The material used to make this blanket is non-irritating, which makes it relatively easy to install. As a matter of fact, you can install this jacket without gloves on your hands and not experience any irritation on your hands. Weighing about 6.3 pounds, this heater jacket does not contain any fiberglass. Collectively, this water heater insulator has an R-value of 6.7.
The product is ideal for DIY installers as it is relatively easy to install. In addition to installation instructions, you will also get an installation tape when you buy the product. You will also love the fact that the blanket is fire retardant. In this regard, the jacket has a class-A fire rating.
As such, it does not pose any fire hazard in your home. For a better coverage around tanks larger than 50 gallons, it is advisable to buy two rolls of the Duck Brand 280464 Water Heater Insulation Blanket.
4. SmartJacket Water Heater Blanket Insulation – The Best Water Heater Jacket for Larger Tanks
With a reflective rating of 6.9, this jacket will definitely insulate the hot water tank in your home or residential property. This will, in turn, help you save some money on energy bills every month.
To help preserve the heat in hot water tanks, the product features a decant 5 mm thickness. With such aspects, a roll of this insulating jacket will save about 40 percent of the heat in your hot water tanks. Additionally, the roll is relatively easy to install for homeowners who love DIY projects.
5. ESP Low-E SSR Water Heater Insulation Kit – The Best Fire-Resistant Water Heater Installation Blanket
With a R-value of 5, this kit will offer the installation you need on your residential or commercial hot water tank. By preventing heat loss from the tank, this blanket will help you save some money on your monthly heating bills.
If you love DIY projects, you will find this installation kit easy to use. When you buy this kit, you will get a foil tape, spacers, and Hypo-Allergenic insulation kit. The product does contain toxic or allergic materials. As such, it will not affect the quality of indoor air in your home.
Again, the product will not cause any irritations to your eyes, skin or throat. The kit has been rated Class A fire resistant and conforms to the requirements of the Stringent California Water Heater Insulation Fire Test.
You will also love the fact that this blanket increases the recovery rate of tanks during cycles. Additionally, it is resistant to mildew, mold as well as damage by humidity.
How Many Types of Water Heater Blankets Are There?
You can find insulation blankets for water heaters and pipes in a variety of materials. Some of these materials are more cost-effective, while others are a bit expensive. These materials also comprise of specific components that are eco-friendly.
However, cheaper ones could even contain toxic materials in them, such as blankets made with fiberglass. Contact with such a material, and that too hot one, can lead to skin irritation. It might even cause respiratory problems if its fumes are inhaled.
However, fiberglass-based insulation blankets are added with other materials, like a foil to increase its reflective value, which is a good thing. Then, you will find blankets made of recycled cotton, which is quite durable.
These come coated with flame retardant solutions to keep them safe and efficient. You can also find insulation blankets made with air bubbles and reflective foils, which are not only sturdy but also light in weight.
Besides, the above blankets, plenty of options are available in materials like aluminum foil, denim, etc. Your chosen material depends on the needs you have for these water heater blankets. Thus, choose smartly.
Can You Save Money With A Hot Water Blanket?
Yes, you can save money with a hot water blanket. When you wrap it around a water heater tank, the blanket insulates the container so that the water inside the tank can maintain its heat.
That way, the water in the heater does not need to be reheated upon usage, as it retains the heat due to the blanket. As a result, the water heater saves the energy required to heat it, which eventually saves money for you.
The use of a hot water blanket is suitable for water heaters that have a tank. Furthermore, these blankets shield the water heater from dissipating the heat in the environment due to a cold surrounding.
With the help of a hot water blanket, you are reducing the need for high-temperature setting on the water heater. That way, you can save excess bills on the use of electricity as well.
How To A Wrap Blanket Over A Hot Water Heater
To wrap a water heater blanket over a water heating unit, you need to follow these steps:
- Switch off the water heater. If you have a gas water heater, make sure to close the gas supply by rotating the valve. For electric water heaters, switch off the breaker from the panel.
- Calibrate the height of your water heater. Cut the appropriate height on the insulation blanket as well. Make sure that you do not cover the heater from the top. That area needs to stay open for the vent to release the heat.
- Wrap the blanket around the appliance. Use tape to keep it in position temporarily. Try to position the blanket so that it does not cover the control panel of the heater. You might need to use it in the future, and you do not want the blanket to come in the way.
- Mark the areas on the blanket that will touch around the control panel, so you can cut that part out. Additionally, mark and cut the areas near the valves and pipes wherever appropriate.
- Line the blanket carefully with the cut areas. Tape the sheet over the heater permanently. Switch on the heater again.
- Please do not set the thermostat above 130 degrees F, as it can overheat the circuit.
Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Water Heater Blanket
Are you trying to improve the energy efficiency of your home? You need to minimize the amount of heat lost by your water heater. Heat loss is particularly rampant in the water heaters that use storage tanks.
In such a case, the hot water tends to lose a considerable amount of heat while in storage. To curb this heat loss from your heater and make your home more energy-efficient, you’ll need a quality water heater blanket.
Any of the leading experts in the industry will tell you that using these jackets on your water heater is one of the most affordable ways of enhancing energy efficiency in your home.
To get the right blanket for your heater, there are several things that you have to consider; some of which are discussed below:
1. The R-Value
The main objective of using a blanket on your heater is to insulate it against heat loss, right? Therefore, it is only wise to go for the one that is good at it. The R-value is a rating that is used to express the thermal resistance of the material used to make the blanket.
In other words, it is a measure of the ability of the blanket to resist the flow of heat. Basically, heater jackets with higher R-values offer better insulation than those with lower R-values.
As such, you choice of a better insulator should not be influenced by its thickness. A water heater blanket may be thicker but have a lower R-value than a relatively thinner blanket.
Water Heater Blanket Material
Again, you need to check the material your preferred heater jacket is made of. Most of the water heater jackets today are made of:
These two materials have superior insulating properties and would be a great choice. However, it is advisable to go for a material that is more resistant to fire as well as to moisture and mold damage. Such aspects will determine the durability of the blanket.
Again, a heater jacket that is fire resistant will make your home safer. Additionally, you should try as much as possible to avoid any heater blanket that contains toxic materials. In this regard, it is advisable to only buy the blankets that are rated ‘non-allergic’ or ‘Non-toxic’.
2. Heater Jacket Size
For the best results, your preferred blanket should fit snugly around the unit. Therefore, size should be a key consideration when shopping for the right water heater blanket. As you may be aware, hot water storage tanks come in different sizes, including the 60L and the 80L tanks.
Since heater blankets are offered in an array of sizes, you should get one that will fit around your hot water storage tank(s).
Though not so important, you should also take the thickness of the blanket into consideration. You should go for the thicker blankets as opposed to the thin ones. Most of the products available today have a thickness of between 0.5 mm and 5 inches.
Hot water heater jackets for residential use may be thinner, but those meant for commercial use need to be extra thick.
Ready To Buy The Best Water Heater Blanket?
The various hot water tank insulation blankets are relatively easy to install, even for beginners. However, choosing the right heater jacket may not be that easy.
This is because there are hundreds of products to choose from in the market. Regardless of your preferred option, the right blanket should be of the right size, have a high R value and be made of the right materials.
You may be looking for an affordable jacket or perhaps are after the one that does not contain toxic materials and has a high reflective value. The search does not have to be a daunting one; this guide will help you buy the best water heater blanket.
If you’re on the search for other efficient heating solutions for your home, try these greatest oil-filled heaters on the market.