In practice, heating systems that aren't properly insulated will lose heat close to where the heat is generated, as well as all along the route of the pipe. You want to make sure that your pipe for your hot water or steam heating system is well insulated so that the heat travels to the farthest reaches of your house without the heater having to work too hard. The best way to do this is to make sure that you properly insulate the pipes with steam pipe insulation.
Although regular pipe insulation might be a bit cheaper and might be easier to find, you cannot use this type of insulation with steam pipes, because these pipes get too hot, reaching as high a temperature as 450 degrees F. in some cases. However， regular pipe insulation is only approved for temperatures up to 120 or maybe 200 degrees F. It will not work with steam pipes, while special steam pipe insulation is available that can be used for systems generating up to 500 degrees F. in heat.
Old houses might still have asbestos pipe insulation around the pipes. As a matter of fact, this type of insulation is no longer installed since there is a health risk associated with it. If you have this type of insulation, it can be covered up to lessen the risk, or you can hire asbestos abatement professionals to remove it for you. Nowadays, fiberglass steam pipe insulation is commonly used. You can purchase this from a number of different suppliers and manufacturers. Generally, you can use steam pipe insulation on copper pipe, iron pipe, PVC pipe, and so on, that come with a variety of diameters and lengths. Nonetheless, remember to cover or insulate every corner of your pipe when installing the insulation, after all, even a small piece of non-covered pipe can lose heat.
For pipe that is located in areas with high traffic, you might want to consider adding an extra PVC protective covering over the insulation. This will help to keep the steam pipe insulation from being damaged, as well as helping to further limit the chances that someone will get injured from bumping into a hot pipe. It is not necessary to use this in all areas though if you would like to minimize expenses a bit.
In conclusion, steam pipe insulation is really a useful staff in protecting your steam pipe and saving energy. Insulating your steam pipe with insulation, you will never regret.