Your water heater is one of the most important appliances in your home. It is responsible for heating all of the hot water that flows into your home and, without it, you wouldn’t be able to do many of the things you probably take for granted now—like showering in hot water, taking a hot bath, or washing your hands, dishes, or clothes in hot water. We all feel comfortable doing these things in hot water, but is there a reason to lower the water heater temperature?
It is important to take good care of your water heater to keep your electric bills as low as possible and avoid having to replace your water heater too soon. One of the most effective ways to take care of your water heater is to make sure it is set at the right temperature. The ideal water temperature is somewhere between 120 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Most households only need their water heater temp to be set at the low end of that range at around 120 degrees Fahrenheit. If your water temperature is set at 140 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, you might want to consider lowering your water temperature.
Lowering your water temperature if it is too high has a variety of benefits. It can extend your water heater’s lifespan, help you avoid dangerous scalding accidents in your home, and can save both energy and money. Keep reading to learn more about 3 of the top reasons to lower your water heater temperature.
Extend Your Water Heater’s Lifespan
Water heaters can be very expensive, so it’s natural to want your water heater to last as long as it possibly can. Lowering your temperature can make a big difference in extending your water heater’s lifespan.
Setting your water temperature too high increases the risk that hard water mineral sediment will build up inside of your water heater. This sediment buildup can encourage rust accumulation and can cause the inside of your water heater to corrode, which can in turn significantly shorten your water heater’s lifespan. Lowering your water temperature can prevent the buildup of sediment inside your water heater and can help your water heater last up to 10 years or even longer.
Avoid Dangerous Scalding
Scalding is a real risk when your water heater is set too high. It poses enough of a risk that it is definitely something to keep in mind, especially if your household includes children or seniors.
It only takes a few seconds of exposure to water that is 140 degrees Fahrenheit or hotter to cause severe scalding, which can lead to second-and even third-degree burns. Setting your temperature no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit helps reduce the risk that someone in your household will become a victim of scalding.
Save Energy and Money
Lowering your water temperature can help you save both energy and money—so it’s better for the planet and better for your bank account.
Heating the hot water that flows into your home accounts for approximately 20% of the amount of energy your household consumes. This is a high percentage, which means it is important to keep in mind how much energy your water heater is using in order to keep your carbon footprint small. It requires more energy for your hot water heater to heat water to a higher temperature.
This means that the higher your water temperature, the more energy your water heater uses to heat the same amount of water. Plus, your water heater may be using significant energy to make up for standby heat loss that occurs at higher rates when your temperature is set too high. Your water heater also needs to use more energy if sediment builds up inside it, which can happen if its temperature is set too high.
Setting your water heater at a temperature that is too high can also force you to pay significantly more money when your electric bill arrives. The more energy your water heater uses, the more money you will have to pay in water heater operating costs. Lowering your water heater to around 120 degrees Fahrenheit can save you a significant amount of money in water heating costs. Many households save $40 to $60 or even more per year just by lowering their water heater temperature.
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