In an ideal world, every home would come installed with an energy-efficient water heating system. But in the real world, that just isn’t going to happen and not everyone can install an efficient system themselves. Maybe it’s not enough time, not enough money, or just an old house that can’t meet the requirements of a modern water heater.
Even if you can’t install a new water heater, you can still save money on your energy bills by improving the efficiency of your existing water heater. Here are some ways to make an old water heater more efficient.
Turn Down the Water Temperature and Save Energy.
Did you know that 125 degrees is the maximum temperature that your water heater should be set at. Actually, you can easily lower it to 120 degrees. You’d be surprise how much energy you can save with 6 degrees.
* Be sure to cut off the electrical power to your water heater before making any adjustments to the thermostat.
Wrap Up the Water Heater and Stop Letting Energy Escape.
If the top or sides of your water heater feel very warm to the touch, then your water heater is losing heat. Wrap it in bubble wrap, household insulation, or a thick blanket, securing it with duct tape. You can also go to your local home improvement store and get wrapping that is made for water heaters. Some experts do not recommend wrapping gas-powered water heaters.
Save Energy Beyond the Tank. Insulate Your Pipes
The pipes right above your water heater are the ones where the most energy is lost. This is because hot water automatically moves upward, like hot air. Tube-shaped pipe insulation is not expensive. You can also install heat trap fittings on your old water heater.
Say Yes to Saving. Just Say No to Sediment.
Over the years, sediment collects in the bottom of water heater—especially in areas where the water is hard—and makes the water heater less efficient. Clean your water heater every six months by draining out about a gallon of hot water.