Hot water is important in every modern household. You get to take a long hot shower whenever you want, wash the dishes, do your laundry and bath the dog among other things.
Having a water heater installed in your home makes all these tasks possible without having to boil water manually.
However, if you’re not filthy rich, you cannot afford to keep your water tank hot 24/7 even if you want to. This is because of the high electricity bill you’ll incur every month due to increased energy consumption.
So, should you turn off your heater to save energy and money? Well, the answer is yes and no. Water heaters, (even if they’re well insulated) lose small amounts of heat any time they’re turned on.
This energy loss takes about 10% of your electricity bill monthly. Therefore, if you turn off your heater when there’s no demand for hot water, you’ll be able to prevent this loss and reduce your electricity bill.
But, if you’re the type of person who stays away from home for a long period of time either because of work or business, turning off your water heating system isn’t advisable. This is especially true if you live in a very cold area.
Without the water being heated, your water pipes are likely to freeze and burst, which is more costly to fix.
Tips on How to Turn Off Your Water Heater
Manually Switch On/ Off the Heater
Most modern water heaters come with an on/off switch which you can use for the purpose of switching your appliance on and off as needed.
If you want to reduce your energy costs and save money, make sure you turn your heater on at least 30 minutes before showering, washing the dishes or whatever you want to do.
Then turn the heater off immediately before using the water. If you don’t do so, it will start heating again and you’ll have a full tank of hot water by the time you’re done showering.
Consider installing a timer if you can afford it to help turn the heater on automatically when hot water is needed, and off when no one is around. You can preset it to operate at your own chosen time.
Having said that, it’s worth mentioning that hot water heaters can malfunction when you least expect it. Some of the warning signs that tell you that your appliance is about to stop working include:
- Water not getting hot enough
- A loud, hissing sound coming from the water tank
- Corrosion around the fittings of your water system leading to rusty water
- Water leaks
- Age – if your water system has lasted more than 10 years, it’s probably on its way out
If your heater malfunctions, probably the first thing that comes to your mind is repair which is okay. However, if it keeps breaking down even after several repairs, it’s wiser to consider hot water system replacement.
There are four main types available – electric, solar, continuous flow, and gas hot water systems, so take time to choose the perfect match for your needs. Then place your order online and wait for it to be delivered to your doorstep very fast.
To conclude, turning off your water heater when you leave home for a short time is safe. It’s also recommended because it leads to a significant reduction in your monthly electricity bill, which helps you to save money.
However, if the climate in your local area is currently very cold and freezing, it’s better to leave your water heater on if you plan to spend most of your time away. This will go along way in preventing your water pipes from freezing and possibly bursting.