Cut Your Water Heating Bills With These Four Tips
Did you know that about 20 percent of your annual energy bill comes from heating water? It makes sense when you consider all the showers, loads of laundry, and dishwashing you do over the course of a year.
But it’s still a little painful to think about all your hard-earned cash literally going down the drain that way. If you want to chip away at that hot water number, there are four basic ways to do it:
- Use less water – The average American household uses anywhere from 65 to 75 gallons of hot water a day. The total adds up quickly – take a look at these common tasks and their hot water usage:
- Laundry (medium) – 25-30 gallons
- Shower (5 minutes) – 10+ gallons
- Dishwasher (average) – 6 gallons
- Kitchen / bathroom faucet – 2 gallons/minute
Making simple lifestyle or equipment changes can have a significant impact on the amount of hot water you use over the course of a year. Installing low-flow water faucets and showerheads, for example, can cut hot water use in half with no loss in comfort. Other changes – like washing your clothes in cold water and taking shorter showers –can help you avoid heating well more than 100 gallons of water every month.
- Insulate! – The water you pay to heat loses a lot of that heat in the pipes en route to the tap or appliance. At minimum, insulate the first six feet of pipe leaving the tank, where most of that heat is lost. Also consider installing an insulating jacket on your water heater’s tank to avoid “standing loss” – heat lost to your cold basement as stored hot water sits awaiting use.
- Turn down the heat – Many manufacturers set their water heating thermostat to a default of 130° or more; the EPA says that a setting of 120° offers the best balance of hot water comfort and efficiency.
- Upgrade – Today’s high efficiency water heaters could cut your bills by thirty percent or more every month – especially if your water heater was born in the 1990s. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will help you match a water heater to your needs and budget, with a full line of high quality Bock heaters available to choose from.
Considering investing in a new water heater? Contact Bolkema today for a FREE estimate on a high-efficiency water heater upgrade for your northern New Jersey or New York home!