5 DIY Water Heater Covers You Can Try

Tired of your ugly-looking water heater? Take a look at 5 DIY ways to transform an eyesore into a testimony of your creativity.

Are you tired of looking at your ugly water heater? Do you feel that it detracts from your home decor?

Water heaters are a great invention. But while many modern appliances look stylish, water heaters certainly do not. The first water heater was created in 1868, and the aesthetics haven’t changed much since.

We all want the place where we live to look and feel good. But since we cannot avoid installing an ugly but essential water heater, our best option is to cover it.


Five Different DIY Water Heater Covers

We’ve researched all the information you’ll need to cover your water heater effectively and with style. Here are the most popular and effective solutions.

1. Curtains

  • Best in: Unfinished basements or garages used only for storage.
  • Worst in: Kitchens, finished basements or bedrooms.

The cheapest and easiest method to conceal your water heater is using curtains. They are easy to mount and come in countless patterns. Also, if you get tired of the design, you can easily replace them with new ones.

All you need to do is buy and mount a curtain rod that fits the space to cover. Choose a curtain fabric that blends in with the surroundings if you prefer a sober look.

Traditional fabric curtains aren’t the only available solutions. Feel free to experiment with various curtain styles (1).

Curtains are cheap but they don’t always look so great. So, it’s best to use them in a part of the house that is not visited often.

However, while curtains score low on aesthetics and durability, they are the cheapest method. You may want to use them as a non-permanent solution until you can figure out what you really want.

2. Room Dividers

  • Best in: Unfinished basements or a garage used for storage only.
  • Worst in: Kitchens and bedrooms.

A room divider is another cheap and super easy solution to hide your water heater. They come already made so all you need to do is choose the one you want and set it up. Most of them are imported from Asia and the selection seems endless.

There are a variety of materials to choose from: wood, fabric, glass. Plus, there are portable, fixed, foldable, or even hanging and roll-up ones.

Glass room dividers, though, are classy, but not really practical for concealing an ugly water heater.

Room dividers are cheap but you may not want to showcase them. These are in the middle when it comes to aesthetics and durability, and are just slightly more costly than curtains.

3. Pallets

  • Best in: Basements and garages.
  • Worst in: Kitchens and bedrooms.

Pallets have become increasingly popular because they are extremely versatile. They can be used as tables, shelves or organizers. But they can also be used to cover a water heater.

Pallets are made of wood, so you’ll need to use the boards to create your cover. Measure the space you need to conceal, then hammer the boards together to create a partition. It will look a bit like a rustic room divider, but cheaper since pallets can be found as free waste material.

You can get creative and paint them, or hang plants or pictures on the outside.

It is best not to use your pallet screen in the most lived parts of the house unless you can find a way to make it blend in with existing furniture. Pallets are in the middle when it comes to aesthetics and durability, and are definitely cheap.

4. Faux Cabinet or Closet

  • Best in: Finished basements, bedrooms, kitchens or a garage that is also a workspace.
  • Worst in: Unfinished basements or garages used only for storage.

Adding a faux cabinet or closet is one of the most popular options because it looks great. If you have an existing structure, such as a closet, an extra door will look natural. No one will guess it is there to hide a water heater.

This solution does require skill if you want to make it yourself, though. If you love to work with wood, give it a go. It is also a more permanent solution compared to curtains or room dividers.

Although it is more costly, it will last as long as your closet or cabinet. So, you can consider it a one-time investment.

Faux cabinets or closets are attractive and upgrade the look of your house, so there’s no need to hide them.

While faux cabinets or closets score high on aesthetics and durability, they’re more costly. They are perfect if you are remodeling and want to make a one-time investment.

5. Plantation Shutters

  • Best in: Finished basements, bedrooms, kitchens or a garage that is also a workspace.
  • Worst in: Unfinished basements or garages used only for storage.

Similar to faux cabinets or closets are plantation shutters. They give a touch of elegance and add value to your house. Plantation shutters are another durable and permanent solution.

They can be made of wood or PVC, foamed synthetics or medium density fiber.

You can also choose sliding ones, according to your needs or preference. Custom-made ones are the most popular.

Plantation shutters give a touch of elegance to your room. It would be a waste to use them in a garage or unfinished basement.

Plantation shutters, just like cabinets look good but will cost you more. However, they may be worth it if you are remodeling and want to make a one-time investment.

We’ve Got You Covered

We’ve seen the most popular options to cover an unsightly water heater. The choice is yours, according to your needs. If you need a quick, temporary fix, grab some cheap curtains to hide your heater.

However, if you’re doing some serious remodeling and want the most aesthetically pleasing solution, you may prefer permanent solutions. Faux closets and plantation shutters would be a great place to start.

Whatever the case, we’ve got you (and your heater) covered.

Do you have any questions or tips you’d like to share about how to cover a water heater? Have you used any of these methods before? We’d love to hear from you — leave us a comment below.

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About the Author

Peter Gray

Peter has been a homeowner for 35+ years and has always done his own repair and improvement tasks. As a retired plumber, Peter now spends his time teaching others how they can fix leaks, replace faucets, and make home improvements on a budget.