Getting More from Your Propane Appliances, Part 2 or 4: Your Water Heater

Posted: October 19, 2017

Hot water faucet

You probably take for granted all that your propane water heater does to make life better for you. But imagine trying going for even a few days without hot water to clean your dishes, your clothes, and yourself and you’ll quickly realize that it’s an unsung hero of home comfort.

Unfortunately that comfort comes at a price – typically about 20 percent of your monthly energy bill.

The good news is with a little planning and some simple lifestyle adjustments, you can shave some points off that number and save hundreds of dollars a year as a result.

Here are five simple things to cut down on your water heater’s energy usage:

  1. Lower the water thermostat – The default setting on most water heaters is typically higher than it needs to be; the EPA recommends a temperature setting of 115-120° to get the best balance between comfort and efficiency from your water heater.
  2. Insulate the hot water pipe – Most of the heat lost between your storage tank and faucet happens in the first 6 feet of pipe leaving the water heater; at minimum, insulate this section of pipe.
  3. Insulate your water storage tank – Water heaters warm and store hot water in a tank (unless your heater is a tankless propane model, which does not store water); an insulating jacket keeps that stored water warm.
  4. Never skip your annual tune-up – Like any appliance, it pays to maintain your water heater to keep it running at peak efficiency and to avoid emergency repairs.
  5. Use less hot water – How? Try installing low-flow showerheads and faucets, which can cut water usage in half without any apparent difference in water pressure. You can also up the ante on conservation behaviors like making sure to use the right load setting for your clothes washer, fixing leaks quickly, efficiently packing your dishwasher, and taking shorter showers.

Want to get even more value for your money? Switch all your appliances to clean, green propane. Contact us today to find out the many possibilities for propane in your Maine home.

Next week: Tips for your propane cooking range