Ways to reduce your water heater’s energy consumption
Water heating can account for over 10 percent of the household utility bill. Aside from a few no-cost habit changes, such as taking shorter showers, there are a few steps a plumbing company can take to help you cut down on your water heating bill. Here are five ways to reduce your water heater’s energy consumption:
1) If your water heater is over five years old, and especially if it is over 10 years old, have a new high efficacy water heater installed by a reputable plumbing company. Technology is continually evolving and the new high efficiency hot water heaters cut water heating bills by as much as 50 percent over an old and inefficient model.
2) Have plumbing leaks fixed. Just a simple leak of only one drip per second from a hot water faucet can add significantly to your hot water heating bill. That may not seem like a lot, but the American Water Works Association reports just a little drip, at 60 drips per minute, will waste over 8 gallons of hot water per day, or over 250 gallons per month, totaling over 3,150 gallons per year! That’s a lot of hot water, and money, going down the drain. So, call a plumber and get those leaks fixed!
3) Have your plumber install low-flow faucets and shower heads. Enacted in 1992, federal law requires that all new faucets and shower heads have low flow rates of 2.5 gallons of water per minute. As fixtures that predate 1992 can use over twice the amount of water, the newer low-flow fixtures can offer a water savings of up to 60 percent.
4) Installing a heat trap on the water heater tank can save as much $30 a month on your water heating bill. Installing a heat trap on an existing hot water heater is best left to a professional, and many of the new storage hot water heaters include heat traps.
5) Have your pipes and hot-water storage tank insulated by a professional, as improperly covering the thermostat on an electric heater or the burner compartment, thermostat or air intake or exhaust on a natural gas hot water can lead to damaging or dangerous situations. Insulating the water pipes leading from the water heater will reduce the amount of heat lost as the water travels to the faucets and can significantly reduce your water heater’s energy consumption.