Unless you’re suddenly faced with a bone-chilling shower, it’s easy not to give your water heater a second thought. It takes a substantial amount of energy, however, to keep the water heated and ready to use. In the average Alabama home, water heating accounts for around 18 percent of annual utility bills. Here are some of the ways that enjoying the convenience of your water heater can send your energy bills sky-high.

Lack of Insulation

If your hot water tank feels warm to the touch, you’ll save money by wrapping it in an insulating blanket. This simple and affordable improvement can lower water heating costs by 7 to 16 percent. Insulating the pipes that run from the heater can save you money too. Self-sticking foam pipe insulation makes this an easy DIY fix.

Keeping the Water Too Hot

Water heaters are typically installed with the temperature set to “medium,” or around 140 degrees. Simply changing the setting from medium to low can reduce water heating costs by up to 5 percent. The water will stay at a well-heated 120 degrees, which is plenty hot water for bathing, washing clothes and doing dishes.

Skipping Maintenance

When it comes to saving money on utility bills, it’s hard to overstate the importance of regular plumbing maintenance. Many models contain anode rods that help keep rust from damaging the interior of your water heater. These rods need to be replaced at regular intervals. Flushing sediment from the tanks at least once each year improves energy efficiency and extends the heater’s service life too.

Using an Outdated Heater

From on-demand tankless heaters to models powered by heat pumps, nothing beats an energy-efficient upgrade for long-term savings. In terms of energy efficiency, today’s modern marvels can reduce your water heating bills by as much as 50 percent. Your trusted plumbers at Air Conditioning by Luquire are readily available to help to select the optimal upgrade. To learn more, check out our plumbing services or call us at 334-230-5870.

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