8 Tips to Green the Hot Water Heater at your Home
Heating water accounts for approximately 25% of each home energy dollar. Some of the best ways to reduce this expense are by upgrading your water heater and ensuring it has sufficient insulation.
By following the tips below, you can begin to reduce your energy consumption and the effects your water heater has on the environment.
✔ Purchase the right kind of EnergyStar rated water heater for your needs – Water heaters come in a range of different configurations. The different types available include gas condensing, heat pump, high-efficiency gas storage, solar, and whole home gas tankless. Below are some typical operating and installation costs, as well as average equipment life.
✔ Consider a solar thermal water heater – Solar thermal water heaters use the sun’s radiation to heat water and are composed of thermal collectors, a storage tank, and a circulation loop. They can be used alone or in conjunction with a backup conventional water heating system. They do not use fuel or electricity, so they will lower your energy costs.
✔ Consider a tankless (on-demand) water heater – Tankless water heaters provide hot water right where you need it, when you need it, without a storage tank. Using electricity, gas, or propane as a heat source, tankless water heaters, in some cases, can cut your water-heating bill by 10 to 20%. The savings are achieved by eliminating standby losses – energy lost when warmed water is sitting in the storage tank.
✔ Reduce the water temperature of the water heater – Chances are you can turn down the thermostat on your home’s water heater a few degrees, and still have plenty of hot water for everyone’s daily shower, not to mention the dishes and laundry. Lowering the temperature from F 140 to F 120 could reduce your water heating costs by 6 to 10%.17
✔ Ensure your water pipes are well insulated – Insulating your water pipes is an easy way to cut the energy consumption of your water heater by preventing heat loss. The water will also be at a higher temperature when it reaches its final destination, which means that you can lower the temperature of your hot water heater by a few degrees. Installation is generally inexpensive and easy. Many DIY stores sell insulation kits. Be sure to check the kit box to make sure that you have all the needed tools for installation.
✔ Buy a water heater insulation blanket – Buying a water heater insulation blanket (for tank water heaters) is an easy way to reduce energy costs. Water heater insulation blankets reduce your water heater’s energy consumption by up to 10 percent. Installation is simple and can be done in a few minutes. When buying, take notice of the R-value of the insulation. The higher the R-value, the more insulating effect you will receive.
✔ If you are buying a gas powered hot water heater, be aware of its Energy Factor (EF) – The energy factor (EF) is a metric used to measure the energy-efficiency of a water heater. When making a purchase, try to buy the model with the highest EF.
✔ Install a timer or turn off your water heater – There is no need for a water heater to continue heating water when you are at work or asleep. The average hot water heater is only in use for 4 hours a day. By using a timer or turning your tank hot water heater off during non-peak hours, you could save up to 12% of your water