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Steam Pipe Exposure/Insulation, Basement Warmth
As we're finishing my basement as a small play room for the kiddos, I'll be hiding roughly 2/3 of my 2" steam supply pipes behind walls. For some reason, my supply pipes currently have no insulation. So here is my strategy
- For any supply pipes behind walls, insulate them with 1" fiberglass pipe wrap
- I intentionally had my general contractor leave about 1/3 of the pipe exposed, as you can see in the pic. Our intent was to put a decorative metal grate in front of the pipe. My concern was that if I insulated all my steam pipes, the basement would be cold and require supplemental heat. You'll probably tell me that it's better to insulate, and provide for supplemental heat if necessary, since having insulated pipes makes the steam system heat more efficiently, especially for the upper levels. But for now, the plan is to grate in front, and I'm thinking maybe of a heat reflector in back (maybe curved sheet metal painted matte, so that the heat is reflected into the room instead of lost behind a wall. Or maybe just pipe insulation applied on the back side.
As you can see in this image, the steam supply for this wall is framed out to allow us to put a grate in front. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.