Go Back   EcoModder Forum > AltModding > Saving@Home
Register Now
 Register Now

Now available from EcoModder: ScanGauge II fuel economy gauge.  Click for details.  


Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-02-2008, 11:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
Beefy
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: South
Posts: 36
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Turning off electric hot water heater when not home?

I have heard of people putting a timer on their electric hot water heater so that it shuts off when not in use. I'm not sure how I would go about hooking up a timer to mine, but I could simply flip the breaker when I leave in the mornings. Currently I take 1 shower per day and it's in the mornings. Other than that I almost have no need for hot water.

Has anyone tried this? How long does it take the heater to get back to proper operating temperatures?

  Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 01:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Ryland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Western Wisconsin
Posts: 3,822

honda cb125 - '74 Honda CB 125 S1
90 day: 79.71 mpg (US)

green wedge - '81 Commuter Vehicles Inc. Commuti-Car

Blue VX - '93 Honda Civic VX
Thanks: 806
Thanked 396 Times in 328 Posts
They work great and are easy to hook up, or if you are unsure about how to do it you can pay a pro to do it and still get a return on your investment within a year or two.
If they are available for your voltage of water heater I would go with a digital timer so that you can have it come on lets say on every morning from 5am-7am (water stays hot for 3-5 hours after that) then on Friday and Saturday it also comes on in the after noon for an hour so you can shower before any evening weekend plans.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 10:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
Beefy
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: South
Posts: 36
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Excellent. I think I could install it myself. I may also install solar attic fan.

I found a problem yesterday...only the A/C is labeled in my breaker box! Everything else is blank. What electrician installs a breaker box and doesn't label 90% of the switches?
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 01:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
ttoyoda's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: boston ma
Posts: 381
Thanks: 0
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts

What electrician installs a breaker box and doesn't label 90% of the switches?

90% of them, in my experience.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 03:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bono, AR
Posts: 170

Daily Driver - '01 Ford Explorer Sport
90 day: 18.12 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Send a message via Yahoo to Tony Raine
i've been wondering about these timers as well. my wife and i each take a shower at around 5:30 to 6:30 each morning. we don't need hot water again until around 7 pm when we wash dishes. i also sometimes take a shower in the evening since i work either outdoors or in a metal building with no heat/air/insulation all day.

so would one of these timers be cost-effective for me? basically i need hot water 5:30-6:30 am, and around 7-8 pm during the week. would the whole tank re-heating twice a day be more efficient than keeping it on all day/night?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ttoyoda View Post

What electrician installs a breaker box and doesn't label 90% of the switches?

90% of them, in my experience.
yup, my house doesn't have a single breaker labeled. trial and error with a circuit seeker solved that
__________________
My Intro
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 03:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
Beefy
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: South
Posts: 36
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
that stinks about the boxes. I may turn everything off for the short time I take putting the timer in.

Tony, here is some good info I found today:

http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/waterheaters.html

specifically these tips:

Quote:
1. (if your heater was made after 1998, it's probably not worth using a timer at all.) A timer for an old (pre-1998) heater will save about 25kWh/mo. for a family of two using 40 gallons a day with the heater off four to six hours a day, but only 14kWh/mo. for a family of four using 80 gallons a day.

2. Home improvement stores sell a special water heater blanket that you can put around your heater to help insulate it. This reduces energy use by 10-15% -- for a family of two, that's about 21kWh/mo., or $20/yr. at 8/kWh. The savings are only slightly less for a family of four.

3. When it's set on scalding hot you have to mix in cold water in your shower to lower the temperature, and why make your heater boil the water if you don't need it that hot? You can probably do with the temperature set to 120 degrees F or less.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2008, 05:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
Green Rodder
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: maywood, new jersey
Posts: 28

Grease Beast - '92 Dodge D250 Standard

Econo-Beater DX - '92 Toyota Corolla DX
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
slightly off-topic

100% of the panels I've installed are labelled.........

I've been to Michael's website, it has a lot of good reading.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2008, 10:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Hotlanta
Posts: 10

Pickup - '95 Nissan Pickup XE
90 day: 27.47 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZachUA View Post
Excellent. I think I could install it myself. I may also install solar attic fan.
I looked in to solar attic (gable) fans. I didn't see savings advantage for my house. They're DC, only move about 700 cfm and cost three times more than an AC fan that'll move 1800 cfm. If you have a small attic space, it might work for you.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2008, 11:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: California
Posts: 73
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Electric water heaters are insulated pretty well, so you probably won't save much by turning it off. 100% of the energy goes into the water as heat (or very nearly so), so the only losses you can save are "standby losses" from heat radiating out of the jacket. Because electric water heaters don't have a flue that tends to cool the water, they usually retain the heat very well.

If you turn it off after it is hot, leave it off for 8 hours and turn it back on, does the element have to come on to heat the water again? If it does, spend your money on insulating the tank, the pipes coming out of the tank, installing a "thermal trap" in the outlet pipe, etc. If the water in the tank is still above room temperature then you haven't lost all of the heat and you won't save much energy by waiting until you come home to turn the elements back on. The intermittent use of the elements during the day will come very, very close to the longer run you need when you turn the elements back on.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2008, 09:48 AM   #10 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bono, AR
Posts: 170

Daily Driver - '01 Ford Explorer Sport
90 day: 18.12 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Send a message via Yahoo to Tony Raine
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZachUA View Post
that stinks about the boxes. I may turn everything off for the short time I take putting the timer in.

Tony, here is some good info I found today:

http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/waterheaters.html

specifically these tips:
thanks for the link! mines 2004 or newer, so looks like i need to just mess with temperature settings.

__________________
My Intro
  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread

Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Time for New Hot Water Heater dremd Saving@Home 70 04-17-2009 04:31 PM
Electric Blanket to help reduce home heating needs? Lazarus Saving@Home 29 08-21-2008 09:21 AM
Home Brew Challenge for Electric Geniuses (make a DIY electric motor controller) WaxyChicken Off-Topic Tech 42 08-19-2008 01:05 AM
Solar Water heater extragoode EcoModding Central 5 03-31-2008 12:54 AM




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com