Did you know that heating water accounts for 12 percent of a family’s electricity bill each month? While turning off your water isn’t always possible, it’s easy to save with these simple tips.
Does Turning Off Your Water Heater Save Money?
Yes, turning your water heater off when you’re not going to need hot water will save you money—but you may have to wait awhile before you have hot water again. It’s definitely worth it to turn it off while you’re out of town, and you may also want to invest in a water heater timer, which is like a programmable thermostat for your water heater. A better option, however, is turning down the heat!
Turn Down the Heat
You never use your water on full-blast hot anyway (140ºF!), so it’s worth it to lower how hot you keep your water heater. You can save up to $125 per year by simply lowering the thermostat on your hot water heater from 140º to 120º F—and you probably won’t even notice the difference.
Buy Your Water Heater a Jacket
A water heater insulation jacket (also called a blanket) costs $15–$35, but it can cut the cost to heat your water dramatically. By insulating your water heater, you’ll cut down on the amount of energy it needs to use to heat standing water in half, also cutting down on the amount you need to pay. To find out if you need a water heater jacket, touch the side of it. If it’s warm, it’s leaking energy. You may also want to insulate your hot water pipes.
Drain Your Water Heater to Save
Make sure to drain your water heater once a year to get rid of sediment. Left too long, this grit can build up until you’re using energy to heat sludge. Flush it out to use less energy and save.
Wash Clothes in Cold Water
Cut down on the amount of hot water you use by washing your clothes in cold water with a cold rinse. Due to advances in detergents and washing machines, the only time you really need to use warm or hot water is when you need to get a really bad stain, like red wine or oil, out of an article. Not only will you help the environment, you’ll save money on heating the water, too.
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