Most discussions about energy consumption and reduction center around HVAC systems and lighting. Water heating energy consumption tends to get neglected. You can address the energy consumed by your water heater, both by changing your habits and making modifications to your hot water plumbing system.
Here are some tips for reducing your home’s plumbing energy consumption.
Saving energy does not need to be difficult. Take shorter, cooler showers to save on both water and energy costs. Wash clothes in cold water or combine loads of laundry when possible, to reduce the amount of energy used. When doing the dishes, avoid leaving the water running constantly. If you are using a dishwasher, do not run it when there are only a few dishes that need to be washed.
Downsize your water heater
Reducing the size of your tanked water heater is something to discuss with a professional who can verify whether your existing heater is larger than your family needs. If it is time to replace your water heater, consider downsizing to save on energy without sacrificing hot water for your family.
Install a tankless water heater
Depending on your routine, having a tank maintain the temperature of your hot water for an entire day while you are away might be a waste of energy. Consider installing a tankless water heater.
Review the temperature setpoint
Unfortunately, due to the risk of bacterial growth, there is a lower limit on the setpoint of your water heater. While it would be great to keep your water at 110 degrees Fahrenheit and save energy that way, you run the risk of getting sick. However, keeping the temperature any higher than 140 degrees Fahrenheit is not necessary for protection from bacterial growth and will only waste energy.
Look into energy-efficient options
A high-efficiency water heater will automatically save you energy to heat the same amount of water as a less efficient version. If it is near the end of your standard water heater’s life, consider investing in a higher efficiency model that will lower your energy consumption and save you money in the long run.
Add a recirculation system
Adding a recirculation system for your home’s hot water system will reduce both energy and water waste. Rather than having hot water sit in your pipework losing its heat, a small pump ensures that the pipe is always filled with hot water. It mixes with incoming cold water so it’s not wasted. It might seem counterintuitive to add an electrical pump but the power required to keep that water circulating is small. You will also reap the benefits of never having to wait for your shower to heat up!
Some of these tips you can carry out on your own but for the rest, give us a call or schedule service online and we can help you reduce your plumbing energy consumption.