Buying a new water heater shouldn’t be done as a knee-jerk reaction to a failed one. Doing a bit of homework before you buy can end up saving you hundreds of dollars or more over the lifetime of the heater. Follow these tips to get the best energy savings out of your new water heater.
- Look for the Energy Star label before you do anything else. Units that don’t have this accolade will use significantly more energy than those that do.
- Figure out your peak hot water usage. In general, a family of three will use no more than 45 gallons of hot water in an hour. For every additional person, 10 gallons should be added. Typical water heaters come in sizes from 40 to 80 gallons with 50 and 60 gallons being the most common. Look for the first-hour gallons rating for the tank you want to purchase. This will tell you how much hot water you will get for an hour when you start with a full hot tank.
- Deciding between an electric or gas heater is going to be part personal preference and part economics. If you’re in the rural areas that don’t get natural gas, propane may be one of your choices. You’ll have to decide if that’s more economical than electric water heating.
- Look at the cost of installation. An emergency installation can be twice as much as a standard one. If you can plan out your water heater change months in advance, it may be possible to cut installation costs significantly.
- Keeping your tank at 120 degrees and using an insulated tank sleeve will allow the heating element to work less while still delivering constant hot water for our needs.
For more expert advice about buying a new water heater or other issues related to home comfort, contact the pros at Team Bob’s Heating Cooling Plumbing. We’ve been serving the Grand Traverse area for over 30 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Traverse City, Michigan and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about Water Heaters and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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