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8 Energy Tips for Storage Tank Water Heaters

storage tank water heatersIf you have an older home and you haven’t replaced your water heater recently, there’s a chance you may still have a storage tank water heater. These water heaters with large water reservoirs typically consume more energy than their modern counterparts that are built to conserve. That said, there are still some things you can do to lower your energy and water bills. Here are a few tips to get started.

About Recovery Time

Conventional storage tank water heaters contain an upper and a lower heating element, both working together to heat the water in the reservoir. While the water heater is at work, consuming as much as 4,500 watts of energy, cold water replaces hot water. The time it takes for this water to warm up is called recovery time. Shortening recovery time is key to getting hotter water quicker and reducing your energy and water consumption.

Storage Tank Water Heater Tips

  • Shorten how long you take showers, investing in a shower clock or LED shower head if needed.

  • Purchase a low-flow shower head with a flow rate less than 2.5 gallons per minute.

  • Reduce the use of dishwashers and washing machines that also use hot water by avoiding partial loads.

  • Invest in a water heater timer so that your water heater is only working when it needs to.

  • Ensure that your water heater is properly maintenanced, free of leaks.

  • Remember that water heaters with insulation will provide you more efficiency. Consider investing in an insulation jacket, but be careful with gas water heaters that you don’t cover the opening for gas combustion air intake.

  • Consider heat traps, which can be installed by a professional plumber on the supply and discharge lines.

  • If you have a larger home or one with a split-floor plan, consider purchasing an additional water heater that you can place closer to the point of usage.

By incorporating some of all of these changes into your routine, you can enjoy energy and water savings even if you don’t have a more efficient water heater at this time.


Gulf Coast Electric’s Panama City Beach electricians specialize in general electrical services, energy audits, specialty wiring, and more throughout the Central Coast.

Clay Miller
the authorClay Miller
I am the creator/writer of and I'm an advocate for oceans, beaches, state parks. I enjoy all things outdoors (e.g. running, golf, gardening, hiking, etc.) I am a graduate of the University of Kentucky (Go Wildcats!!). I'm also a huge fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was born and raised in the beautiful state of Kentucky.

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