Green tip for week #19 — Week of September 7, 2008

Turn down your water heater

This week’s green tip from is a simple one that won’t cost you any money, and will only take a minute.  Turning down the temperature of your water heater can conserve energy and reduce waster.  Many of us have our water heater set far more hot than we ever need.  Not only can this be a safety issue, but having your water heater set to a temperature that is too hot is simply wasteful.

As you’ve read in our other weekly green tips, is all about encouraging environmental responsibility through simple changes, and by offering ideas that are easy to incorporate.  Even though turning down your water heater won’t make global warming screech to a halt, everything we do individually can have an impact cumulatively.

Even if you aren’t convinced there will be significant environmental benefit from the fact that you can conserve fuel energy resources by maintaining a more moderate water temperature, doing so can be easier on your finances (reduced energy consumption) it’s just a practical change to make, since having extra hot water sit in a large holding tank doesn’t do much good if you don’t need it.

When turning down your water heater temperature, just drop it a little bit at a time, and let it settle in for a day or two before adjusting it again (to make sure the tank has time to change temperature and the existing water in the pipes flows through).  If it is still plenty warm after the change, drop it a bit again, until you feel like it gives you just enough hot water for your needs.

Remember that most water heaters also have a “vacation” setting or something similar to reduce the temperature when you are away from home and don’t need hot water to be sitting in a tank waiting for you.

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Remember that taking small steps today can lead to substantial benefits to the environment tomorrow!

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