Reduce Your Water Heating Electricity Bill
How to Reduce Your Water Heating Electricity Bill
Heating the water you use in your home on a daily basis requires electricity, and that comes at a cost. With the price rises by big energy companies, that can add up to a significant amount of money over the course of a year. In fact, uSwitch state that hot water usage in your home accounts for up to 10% or more of your annual energy costs. Thankfully, there are some important (and simple) ways that you can reduce your water heating electricity bill if you’re using an unvented water cylinder.
Using a Timer
As your water heater fills, it warms the water in the cylinder. Once it reaches the pre-set temperature, heating stops. Over time (and even with insulation) that heat dissipates. If your cylinder’s insulation has been compromised, water heat can be lost very quickly. However, even in a system with adequate insulation, heat loss will eventually turn the heater back on, even if you’re not using the hot water. This unnecessary heating can be avoided by using a timer to heat water only when it’s needed. You can save several pounds per month with a timer alone.
The duration (or length, if you prefer) of your timer is also an important consideration. Avoid the temptation to set the timer for a long period. Only set it for the period of time that you’ll actually be using the hot water. Otherwise, you’re still paying to heat water that’s not actually being used – that’s just wasted money. Of course, the timer duration will vary from one household to another, but you can easily determine the length of time that’s right for your particular needs.
Setting a Reasonable Temperature
What temperature is your system set for? Chances are good it’s actually pretty high, particularly if you’ve never adjusted it. Heating water to high temperatures is definitely a waste of money, as you the need to mix it with cold to achieve a temperature that won’t scald your skin.Instead, consider setting your system to a more reasonable temperature (we recommend about 55 degrees). This allows you to heat water to a level that is usable, but doesn’t overheat the water and require mixing with cold from the mains to be useable
Don’t Run the Tap
How much hot water do you waste while letting the tap run? Not only does this increase your water bill, but it requires that the heater in your cylinder to turn on more frequently. As hot water drains from the cylinder, it begins to refill. The water filling the cylinder is cold, and requires heating to achieve your pre-set temperature.Instead of letting the taps run, use a plug in the drain to hold water in the basin. This ensures that your water heater only has to run a minimal amount (if at all) to heat fresh cold water to the pre-set temperature.
Who doesn’t love a long, hot soak in the tub? Well, if you’re paying too much for electricity over the course of a year, that love might be diminished by a considerable amount. Filling a tub takes a great deal of hot water, which means that your water heater must then refill and reheat.Even if you have it set to a reasonable temperature, that’s a lot of wasted money. You can get around this by taking showers instead of baths. The average bathtub takes about 130 litres of water. On the other hand, you might use as little as 60 litres of water if you took a 10-minute shower, instead. That’s 70 litres of water that you don’t have to reheat (plus the savings on your water bill).
Heat During Off-Peak Times
If you have an economy 7 or 10 electrical supply, saving money on your electric bill through strategic water heating will require that you take an additional step. Make sure you heat the water during off-peak hours, or you’ll be paying too much. If your water heater is a modern model and well insulated, it should be able to maintain water temperature for up to two days after being heated, so there’s really no downside to heating water during off-peak times, even if you actually use it during peak hours.You’ll need to set your timer for off-peak hours, though, otherwise the heater will automatically kick on when the temperature drops as cold water refills the cylinder.
Check the Insulation
Speaking of insulation, if you’re experiencing high electric bills and suspect that they’re related to your water heater, it might be wise to check the insulation. If you have an older model cylinder, it might not be insulated. In that case, a cylinder insulation jacket can help reduce your electricity use. However, modern unvented cylinders should have a 60-mm layer of foam insulation surrounding them.
This particular tip is not necessarily related specifically to your water heater, so much as it is the electric company’s policies. More and more utility companies are offering discounts for customers who pay their bills online. If you’re paying with cash or a cheque, consider automatic drafts, or online bill payments. These can help you save at least a little bit of money over the course of the year.
Call an EasyFlow Engineer Today
If you’re struggling with high electric bills related to water heater use and have tried these tips to no avail, get in touch with EasyFlow. We provide expert maintenance and installation services for most brands of unvented water cylinders, and can often provide same-day service. Whether you’re considering a new water heater, or need repairs to an existing unvented cylinder, we can help. Call us on 0800 433 4043.