Choosing the right water heater allows you to conserve Energy and Water.
Most of us love a warm shower or soak in a bathtub in the evenings, just before bed. After all, a hot relaxing shower is a great idea after a long stressful day at work. It makes the body and the mind more relaxed. The hot water actually improves oxytocin levels, and this in turn improves your mood and lowers stress levels. On the other hand, if your water heater breaks down or does not work well all the time, your shower would be a dreadful experience. Worse still, while you patiently await the water to turn warm, you would be wasting water.
What sort of water heaters are there?
Before we get into the types of water heaters, you have to understand the basics - that cold water enters near the bottom of the tank and hot water is drawn off near the top. Heating large quantities of water rapidly can be very costly.
Firstly, choose a water heater with the highest energy factor (EF) and First hour rating (FHR). EF is based on recovery efficiency, standby losses and cycling losses. FHR is based on how much hot water the heater will deliver during a busy hour. with an appropriate first-hour rating (FHR) by estimating peak-hour demand for hot water
Secondly, choose an instantaneous water heater where hot water flows as soon as the shower tap is turned on. This helps to save water and energy as compared to storage heaters, which normally require water to flow for a while before becoming hot. Instantaneous water heaters also have restricted flow to be efficient, reducing excessive flow and usage of hot water.
Right installation of a water heater
After you have selected your water heater, ensure that you have a licensed electrician to do the installation. He/She should be able to know not to install a water heater in a cool / cold environment, to avoid a high energy bill.
The location of the water heater is also important in order to minimize the length of pipe runs to the final hot water discharge points. The pipe of hose must be as short as possible to ensure that cold water is not wasted while waiting for hot water to come through the taps. It is also important to insulate the hot water storage tank and pipes to reduce heat loss, but be careful not to cover the tank thermostat
Consider installing aerators in taps and low-flow shower heads that may reduce hot water consumption, by up to half.
Request for an installation of a heat trap above the water heater. A heat trap is a simple check valve that prevents thermo-siphoning - the tendency of hot water to rise up from the tank into the pipes, thereby lowering standby losses.
Extend the life of your water heater and save energy and water
Request your electrician to lower the thermostat on the water heater to 50 degrees. After all, you will be unlikely to need scalding hot water for a shower. You may also want to install a timer that can automatically turn the hot water off at night and on in the morning. This small investment pays itself off in less than a year. Over time, you will need to repair leaky taps and shower heads - a leak of one drip per second could cost $1.60 per month, so be prompt about this!
You will also want to drain a small quantity of water from the hot water tank every 3 months to remove sediment that prevents heat transfer and lowers the unit’s efficiency. Sludge and lime deposits consume heat to no purpose at all.
Be deliberate in your choice of water heaters and also how it is installed as these will extend the life of the water heater and also allow you to conserve energy and water over time. Insist on a licensed electrician and plumber to do the job so that it will be done professionally.