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Insulating pipes - aircon?


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Many sources say that NOT insulating "heating pipes" inside your home is a good idea, it increases the radiation surface and therefore drops the needed flow rate and/or temp. The one below for example.


But what about air con? I don't think air vs water makes a difference, and not sure but expect same from (mostly) cooling vs heating. It certainly would make it easier to run thin uninsulated pipes (we're struggling for space), but I can imagine with my air con air pipes cooling "unwanted places", it might take somewhat longer to cool the places I actually need some cooling urgently.


1/ I have  fan coil units in the loft cooling 1st floor bedrooms. Loft might well be hotter than the rest of the house, so I would be trying to cool the room below with hot pipes supplying the air. I suspect I should insulate.


2/ I'm running the air pipes through my livingroom to cool both livingroom and kitchen. Probably a good idea not to insulate two adjoining rooms that need cooling


3/ As for UFH pipes, super short run downstairs, but the run to upstairs might be worth explicitly not insulating.


4/ DHW always insulate











Edited by puntloos
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IMO it's about unwanted heat loss and dew point.


Aircon - always insulate else you'll get condensation / drips


Domestic cold water - suggest insulating if it's in a bathroom for the same reason


Heating primaries (before they ranch for space heat / hot water) - insulate to avoid summer heat gain


Domestic hot water primaries (from branch to cylinder coil) - insulate to avoid summer heat gain


Space heating primaries / pipework - I would say NO unless they will cause excess heat gain (tap dancing on UFH in a hallway for example) or you're using bits of insulation and then clamping around those to allow pipes to expand/contract without rubbing/squeaking


Domestic cold water elsewhere - meh


Domestic hot water - definitely the bits that are always hot such as a manifold above a cylinder that heats by thermosyphon; probably good practice to insulate the rest


Cooling with a heat pump - now you do need to insulate your heating primaries as they become your cooling primaries



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