With winter underway, you may be paying more attention to your home’s furnace or boiler as they are working harder this time of year.
However, there is another piece of equipment working harder. It’s your water heater. If you’re surprised, you’re not alone.
There are three reasons for your water heater’s increased workload.
Colder water. The fresh water that is coming into your home, whether it’s from the public water supply or a well, is colder in the winter. The term for that is “lower inlet temperature.” Your water heater will have to work harder and use more energy to get that colder water to your set temperature.
Standing heat loss. Most homes here in North Carolina have a conventional water heater where the heated water is stored in a tank until it is used. Water heaters are usually in an unheated basement, and it can get pretty chilly down there in winter. If your water sits in the tank for a long time, like when you’re away at work during the day, it loses more heat than in summer. That’s what standing heat lose is. It’s why your water heater has to work harder to keep you water hot so it’s ready for you to use.
You’re using more hot water. Longer, hotter showers in the winter are the norm. Combine that with holiday entertaining, and kids home from school or college and more laundry to be done, your hot water usage has increased. That puts a bigger workload on your water heater.
Since water accounts for around 20 percent of your energy bills, increased work by your water heater means you’re probably going to be facing higher energy bills this time of year.
But you can minimize that increase with regular maintenance of your water heater. An annual tune-up helps your water heater run at peak efficiency, meaning it will use less energy to get the job of water heating done.
If it’s time to replace your water heater, the propane appliance experts at Parker Gas offers top-quality, high-efficiency water heaters. We also have tankless water heaters from Rinnai, that offer great energy efficiency, and endless hot water on-demand. Contact us today to get started!