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Hot Water Heater Energy Saving Tips

Did you know, when it comes to green living, your hot water heater is a loser? That tank of metal hiding in your garage, attic, or under your stairwell, has one purpose in mind – making sure you’re as comfortable as you want to be.

The challenge starts when the liquid sits and then cools down. The unit is designed to click on to warm it up which produces a constant cycle. This process, however, gets expensive.

In some situations, a hot water heater can be responsible for up to 50 percent of your total electric bill.

Your hot water heater may be using 50 percent or more of the total energy consumption in your home.

Five tips for running your hot water heater more efficiently:

1) Wrap It Up. Your hot water heater can be kept cozy and warm by wrapping it with a fiberglass insulated blanket. This is especially vital if it’s stored in an unheated area, such as a garage or attic. This can cut your losses up to 40%. They’re inexpensive to purchase and to install. When wrapping, be sure not to block the thermostat or air inlets.

2) Invest in Low-flow Fixtures. Every hot water heater will run more efficiently if used less often. The average family uses about 700 gallons of high temperature water each week. Investing in low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators can reduce consumption by as much as 60%.

Use the economy drying setting on your dishwasher and don’t use the pre-wash feature. Dishwashers today are designed to tackle dirty dishes with a vengeance. Rinse dishes before stacking.

3) Check the Temperature. The factory default on a hot water heater is usually set high. To avoid bacteria build up, set the temperature at 120 degrees.

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Some units don’t have a numbered temperature gauge so simply put it between the low and medium settings. To check, after a few days, put a cooking thermometer into your tap flow and keep adjusting the setting until the thermometer reaches 120 degrees.

4) Drain Sediment. Your water contains minerals such as iron and other things, which naturally build up in your hot water heater over time. It’s crucial to keep the pipes and drains free of this debris for efficiency.

Check your manufacturer’s manual to find the quickest and most effective method to clean your tank. This should be done one or two times a year.

5) Insulate Exposed Pipes. Wrapping insulation around pipes reduces what is known as standby losses. This happens when a tank constantly increases water temperature and energy is wasted. Wrapping will keep the liquid 2 to 4 degrees warmer. That way it will be warmer quicker when you turn on the tap and that saves energy.

When you turn on the tap or the shower, it’s a great feeling to know you’ll have just what you need and want without much thought as to how your hot water heater delivers it to you. By investing your time and a little effort and money into your hot water heater, you can ensure you and your family will have all the comfort you’ll need or want for a long, long time.

If you’ve tried all these tips and still feel that you need to replace your hot water heater, Myrtle Beach and Conway area residents should make sure to choose a modern, energy-efficient model. Brown & Reaves Services, Inc., can install a new hot water heater for you. Give us a call for a free estimate — 843-497-9867 — or fill out our short inquiry form and we’ll get back to you with a quote, usually within 24 hours.

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