Did you know that the water heater is the 3rd costliest appliance to operate in your home? It uses 14% of an average home’s cost. Here’s why – most homes have tank style water heaters. That means the heater is continuously heating the water so that hot water will be available when you want it.
According to Kevin Lawson, Vice President of Tri-State Laundry Equipment Co., tank-less water heaters are becoming more popular. “They are definitely the way to go,” said Lawson. “The cost of the heater itself continues to decline and then there are the tax advantages. But there is a considerable cost involved to convert to a tank-less system. It can take around 5 years to realize a payback.”
If you are like me, you’ll be using your current tank style heater for some time to come. Here are some things you can do to make it more cost efficient:
On both electric and gas heaters –
• Turn them off or set the temperature way back when gone for an extended period. There’s no sense heating water if you’re not there to use it.
• Set your water heater to 120 degrees F. According to energysavers.gov, for each 10 degree reduction in water temperature, you can save between 3 – 5% in energy costs.
• Wrap your water heater in an insulating jacket. This will reduce the heat lost through the walls of the tank. Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s specifications, don’t cover the thermostat, and don’t restrict the air inlet on gas heaters.
On electric heaters - Keep elements changed out. Lime and minerals deposits build up on the heating elements and heat has to get through that stuff to heat the water. This reduces the efficiency of the heater and can easily be replaced for a minimal cost.
On gas heaters – Make sure the gas pressure set properly. The lack of pressure along with the demands put on the water heater can cause the burner to stay on more often to keep up or recover.
We hope these tips will cause your water heater to not so costly. We welcome any suggestions you may have.