Water Heater Energy Efficiency

Water heater energy efficiency is a touchy subject. You use your water heater every day, which means that making sure it is as efficient as possible can save you much money on your utility bills. Between showering, doing laundry, and washing dishes, your water heater has to heat a whole lot of water. According to the US Department of Energy, your water heater uses 18% of your home uses’ total energy. With our helpful tips, you can bring that number down, save money, and conserve water. We’re sure if you’ve found your way here, you’re looking to do all three.

The two most natural ways to reduce energy usage that your spending on hot water is to reduce how much hot water you’re using in the first place and reduce heat loss. These aren’t hard to do, but we’ll walk you through them so you can make sure that your efforts have the most impact.

How to Use Less Hot Water

  • Replace wasteful shower heads with modern low flow fixtures. New small flow fixtures use as little water as 1.6 gallons per minute while still delivering water at 80 PSI.
  • Find and repair leaks in your home.
  • Replace the aerators on your faucets with new ones that have flow rates of less than one gallon per minute.
  • Use cold water to wash laundry.
  • Don’t wash dishes by hand. Modern dishwashers use as little as 3 gallons per load. That means they use over 20 gallons less than washing the same amount of dishes by hand.


How to Reduce Heat Loss from your Water Heater

  • Give your tank a blanket: If your water heater is a conventional model with a tank, investing in a water heater blanket can reduce heat loss.
  • Insulate your hot water pipes: You can pick up inexpensive pipe insulation from your local hardware store, and it will go a long way to reducing heat loss as water travels through your pipes.
  • Turn down your water heater temperature: Reducing your water heater temperature from 140 degrees F to 120 degrees F can reduce your energy usage by 6-10 percent.

Taking these steps will go a long way to reducing your energy usage and save you money. If you have a conventional water heater with a tank, we recommend switching to a tankless water heater. They’re far more efficient than traditional tanked models. If you are considering replacing an old water heater with a new or energy star rated model, make sure to enlist a professional’s help. A new water heater is a significant investment in your home. If it is installed improperly, the unit could be damaged. For more information on how you can improve your home’s energy efficiency, check out our improved energy efficiency blog post.