How to Improve Your Water Heater’s Efficiency

Since 20% of your energy bill comes from using your water heater, it makes sense you’d want to keep it working as efficiently as possible. Inefficient water heaters don’t just cost more to operate. They also break down more and don’t last as long. The bottom line is this. When your water heater doesn’t run well, it’s costing in more ways than one. That’s why we put together a short post to let you know four things you can do to improve your water heater’s efficiency.

Flush and Drain the Tank

Tank water heaters get dirty. You don’t have to have a hard water problem to get sediment build-up in your tank. In fact, all water heater tanks contain a certain amount of sediment. While the sediment doesn’t harm you, it’s not great for your water heater and its mechanical parts. Draining and flushing the tank once a year gets rid of build-up and allows the burning elements to heat faster and better. This is a simple service that people can do themselves using a garden hose or by scheduling a maintenance service with their favorite plumber.

Insulate Your Water Heater

Most people have never heard of insulating their water heaters. However, water heaters are prone to heat loss. Did you know an insulated water heater raises the water temperature 2-4 degrees more? Another reason to insulate is that it means your water heater doesn’t have to work as hard to heat the water. Oh, and while we’re on the subject of insulating, don’t forget about your water pipes. Learn more about how insulation benefits your plumbing system and contact your plumber today!

Fix Leaks

Have you noticed your water heater leaking water? This isn’t a good sign. The temperature pressure relief-valve is only supposed to release pressure, not water. Yet, it’s the most common type of water heater leak. Walk around your water heater periodically checking for leaks and get them fixed ASAP.

Also, pay attention to leaky pipes in your home. When pipes leak, it means the water heater has to work harder to supply more and more water. Not only does a leaky pipe cost you money for repairs and wasted water, you’re also wasting energy.

Turn Down the Water Temperature

We’re not telling you to take cold showers. What we’re suggesting is turning the thermostat to “medium” or 120-degrees Fahrenheit. Some water heaters come with degree settings and other low-medium-high settings. Keeping the water heater temperature in the mid-range doesn’t affect your comfort, but it has a huge impact on your energy bill. In fact, by some estimates, households save 3%-5% on water costs each year when turning down the thermostat.

Keeping the water at a lower temperature also protects your family. Every year children -adults, too – suffer scalding water injuries. Children are susceptible to hot water injuries more so than adults because their skin is thinner. If you have small children in your household, turning down the water heater prevents serious burns.

Get Water Heater Repair Right Away

We said we would give you four ways to improve your water heater’s efficiency, but we can’t help to throw in one last suggestion. If your water heater isn’t working well, figure out what’s going on and make repairs right away. The longer you live with a faulty water heater, the more money you pay for water heating costs. At Wise Choice Plumbing & Rooter, we offer same-day quality water heater repair in Southern California. If you’re having problems heating your water well, call us and let our expert plumbers fix the problem right away!