ENJOY HOT WATER AND ENERGY EFFICIENCY
Your propane water heater accounts for about 20 percent of your home energy costs. And this time of year, your propane water heater is working even harder, and a spike in your energy bills can really be a pain in the wallet.
We have some easy tips that can help you save hundreds of dollars a year on water heating for your southern New Jersey home.
- Use less hot water. This can be done many ways that won’t be hard to do. Avoid doing half-loads of laundry as much as you can, and use cold water for most loads. Keep the bathroom door closed when showering so the bathroom stays warmer and you’re less tempted to make the water hotter. Don’t run the dishwasher unless it’s full. By the way, running the dishwasher with a full load uses less water and energy than washing those dishes by hand.
- Insulate your water heater tank. Do you have a conventional water heater with a tank? If so, the water in the tank loses heat as it waits to be used. That standing heat loss is even more pronounced in winter, as water heaters are usually in an unheated basement. An insulating water heater jacket helps keep the heat in your tank. Another way your water loses heat is when it’s sent from the tank to the appliance. This mostly happens in the first six feet of pipe. You can reduce this heat loss by insulating the pipe as well.
- Turn down the water heater temperature. It’s likely your water heater temperature is set much higher than it needs to be, maybe as high as 140 degrees. It’s a big waste of energy, because your conventional tank water heater has to work even harder to get the water that hot. That high a water temperature can also pose a scalding risk, especially for children and the elderly. Most of the time, keeping your water heater set for between 115 and 120 degrees works just fine. And by reducing the temperature on your water heater by that little, you can save up to 22 percent on your water heating costs over the course of a year!
- Keep your tank in good running order. Getting annual maintenance done on your propane water heater helps it remain operating at its top efficiency, meaning you get the most bang for your water heating buck.
- Upgrade to a tankless water heater. Tankless water heaters can be up to 34 percent more energy efficient than a conventional tank heater, which can lead to big energy savings. Without a tank, the water’s not being heated and re-heated over and over when it’s not being used. Another benefit? Endless hot water when you want it, with no wait!