insulating copper pipes

14 Sep 2011
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United Kingdom
Hi All

I recently had the storage bolier replaced by a combi boiler. Then in the space that was available by removing the cold storage /hot tank and immersion heater, I moved the washing machine from the kitchen and have made it like a utility cupboard (Plumbed the water outlet myself to the bathroom washbasin outlet : // This gave me a slot in the kitchen to fit a dishwasher, which I just finished doing (Wife happy). While doing this moving equipment around and poking my head under kitchen worktop etc got a bit stunned when I accidently touched the hot water pipes. Also , the new utility cupboard is getting hot because of the hot water pipes at the back of it. So basically I am wasting a lot of heat.

Question :
1. Can I do some insulation on the hot water copper pipes everywhere by myself?
2. Is it ok to just insulate them where they are accessible and leave them un-insulated where I cannot access them? Or where there are too many bends/joints?
3. The pipes heating the utility room is a waste, but the pipes running in the kitchen are heating the air in the kitchen. Is this ok as they are doing a bit of work of the radiators in the kitchen?
4. With a combi boiler, which heats water instantaneously, will insulation lead to any savings?

with regards
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Foam pipe insulation (Climaflex for example) comes in metre lengths in 15, 22 and 28mm sizes. Its stocked by B&Q and the like.
Its slit down the side, so you can slip it over the pipe and it will find its way along the length, closing again as it does so.
It won't go round 90 deg bends though, so you'll have to be able to access them, and cut the pipe at 45 deg mitres to get a snug fit.
You may as well insulate what you can - it won't save you a fortune but it is worth while....bare pipe won't heat the room up much due to its small surface area.
John :)

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