Your water heater is an essential part of your home that maintains your comfortable lifestyle. It's logical if you place it in your laundry room.
Unfortunately, water heaters don't exactly look aesthetically pleasing. They are bulky and tend to draw attention even if you arrange the laundry room in a visually pleasing way.
If you want your laundry room to look more appealing, you need to try design solutions that work for the interior. However, it's essential to ensure that the covering will not negatively impact the water heater. Functionality should not be traded for aesthetics, especially with heating appliances.
Water heaters tend to be a bit big, so you'll need to ensure that the covering will accommodate it. If you're building a "hard" covering, like a closet or box panel, you need to create an allowance of space so the heater won't be cramped.
If you're using a soft fabric covering, such as a curtain, make sure it doesn't trap in the heat too much. Leave gaps above and below to let air flow freely.
Fortunately, there are a lot of good materials you can use to hide the bulky contraption. We have gathered ideas on how to do this safely, effectively, and aesthetically. Keep reading below to learn more!
1. Build Cabinet Doors
Building cabinet doors is one of the most effective ways to hide a bulky water heater. Swinging cabinet doors will allow for good airflow, and you have the creative agency to make the cabinet as aesthetically pleasing as possible.
Make sure to paint it with a neutral color to blend into your interior beautifully.
It is best to hire a competent builder to build this for you since you wouldn't want it to break down in the middle of the year.
2. Cover With Bifold Doors
Bifold doors are an easier way to cover heaters. There are many designs of bi-fold doors, but the most common one are those that look like it has shutters.
Bi-fold doors will make your laundry room look more visually cohesive.
If standard bi-fold doors are not your style, you can go with rattan folding doors for a more rustic look, floral bifold doors for a feminine appeal, or a minimalist design for a sleek look.
3. Use Curtain Panels
Installing curtain panels is an excellent alternative to closets or partition doors. Curtains can camouflage bulky heaters, creating a softer atmosphere around the room.
Make sure to choose curtain panels that tie the interior together.
You can choose neutral colors to blend into the background, make it seem like an extension of the walls, or select bolder designs to have a design accent.
Your curtain panels can either be installed curved to mimic the heater's form, or you can install them straightly to hide the heater better.
4. Cover With Screen Doors
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Screen doors are different from bifold doors or room partitions. Screen coverings "box" the heater inside, but it's not as heavy as cabinet doors.
It has fabric panels attached to poles or wooden contraptions, making installation easier. You can choose from many design options to make it visually pleasing when placed in your laundry room.
Since it has a boxed form, it hides the heater better than curtains or dividers. Since it most likely looks like an extension of the wall, it is best to blend it into the interior or at least complement it.
5. Use Colorful Fabrics
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Covering the heater with colorful fabrics will not only camouflage your heater away but also inject vibrance into the laundry room. You can attach a magnet on the top and bottom part of the fabric, then surround the bulky water heater with it.
If you intend to use fabrics, it is best to use design-rich ones since it would only look strange to have a plain-looking bulk on the side of the room. You can use patterned, floral, or striped fabrics for visual appeal.
If you want to be a little more creative, you can switch out the fabrics depending on your laundry room's current decorations or match them according to the season!
6. Build Sliding Cabinet Doors
If you want to save space but want a more secure way to hide the heater, build a closet with sliding doors. This is ideal if you have a small laundry room but still want to hide your bulky water heater.
Cabinets with sliding doors will also have a sleeker and more minimalist look, making it easier to blend into the background.
7. Build A Boxed Frame
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A boxed frame resembling a cabinet or a wall extension will effectively camouflage the heater. Boxed frames can be removed by moving the entire box away so that it might be too much work.
However, it's still an excellent alternative to cabinets since they're easier to build, so you can do it yourself instead of hiring a contractor.
You can paint the boxed frame with any color you want, but as always, it's best to stick to neutrals to make it more aesthetically versatile.
You can stick contact paper or wallpaper material at the front for visual appeal. This will make the cover look like a design accent in your laundry room.
If you still have a huge gap between the covering and the ceiling, you can place your laundry room decor there.
8. Create a Barrel-Looking Cover
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This is another type of boxed frame. It is a popular design solution, especially if you want your laundry room to have an effortlessly rustic look. However, this can be difficult to build, so you may want to hire a carpenter or a contractor to make this for you.
This is ideal for smaller heaters since bigger heaters would require a more practical design solution (such as a closet or a curtain).
9. Recycle Old Fence Boards
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If you have fence boards that are still usable, you can use these to cover your water heater. You can create a boxed frame or a small closet with them.
Old fence boards can give your laundry room a rugged look, but you can make it look more modern if you sand and paint it with a neutral color.
If you want to lean into its rustic appeal, you can seal it and leave it as it is. You can also stain it with a deep-brown shade, ensuring the texture is visible.
How To Make The Design Cohesive
Making the design cohesive is about incorporating complementary colors into the interior's color scheme. The colors don't have to match, but you want them to work together.
You can do this by following the color theory, where you either pick analogous colors (next to each other in the color wheel) or complementary colors (colors on the opposite side of the color wheel).
Also, you can try to stick with natural colors since they will blend effortlessly. Natural colors include greens, blues, and yellows.
To avoid visual chaos, you should also be consistent with the hues and shades you choose to incorporate into the room.
In terms of patterns, follow the rule of threes. Use three patterns (stripes, floral, herringbone), then distribute them evenly around the room to maintain balance.
Will The Heater Overheat With A Cover?
The covers will not necessarily make the water heater overheat, but you must allow proper airflow. You should have at least 2-3 inches of allowance around the curtains or faux cabinets so the cover won't be a fire hazard.
Water heaters only overheat if there's been a sediment build-up or too much pressure. When this happens, make sure to have the heater repaired before re-installing the cover.
To Wrap It Up
The laundry room is one of the most demanding parts of the house, so it's only natural that you want it to look as visually pleasing as possible. However, you shouldn't compromise function, so make sure the covers can easily be opened whenever necessary.
Hiring a competent contractor is the most effective way to ensure that the cover won't compromise the heater. It will also make the cover more durable, making your laundry room look consistently lovely.
Good luck with your project!