In a typical household, water heating accounts for about 18 percent of energy consumption. Anything that you can do to reduce that portion of your home’s energy usage can have a big impact on your utility bills. That’s why we put together the following tips to help San Francisco area homeowners reduce their water heating costs.

8 ways to lower your water heating costs

In general, there are four different ways to cut your water heating costs: reduce your hot water consumption, lower your unit’s thermostat setting, add insulation and install water-efficient appliances. All of the following tips fit into one of those categories:

  • 1. Take faster showers. Showering typically accounts for the largest percentage of hot water consumption in your home. Reducing your showers by a couple minutes is a great way to cut your water heating costs.
  • 2. Run only full loads of dishes and laundry. You want to make sure you’re getting the most out of the hot water you’re using, which is why it’s best to wait until your dishwasher or washing machine are full before running them.
  • 3. Turn off water heater when vacationing. There’s no sense in heating water when you’re not going to be using it! If nobody is going to be home for a few days, lower the thermostat on your water heater or shut it off completely.
  • 4. Lower your water heater’s thermostat. This is one of the easiest ways to cut down on your water heating costs. Most manufacturers set their water heaters at 140 degrees, but the typical household only needs its unit set at around 120 degrees.
  • 5. Insulate your water heater. Insulation helps contain the heat inside of your water heater, resulting in less gas and/or electricity consumption.
  • 6. Insulate your pipes. Adding insulation to the first 6 feet or so of the pipes leaving your water heater is another great way to reduce heat loss.
  • 7. Install low-flow faucets and showerheads. Low-flow faucets and showerheads make it easy to cut down on your hot water consumption because they allow less hot water to get through at the source.
  • 8. Use water-efficient appliances. Any time you’re looking for a new water heater, dishwasher or washing machine, make sure they are water-efficient units that consume less hot water.

If you have any questions about how to lower your water heating costs, or if you’d like a plumbing system serviced or installed in your home, contact Cabrillo, your San Francisco plumbing, heating and cooling company.