If you’re tired of waiting for hot water to come out of household fixtures in the bathroom or kitchen, a water recirculator may be the answer. Houses are larger than ever, and heated water often travels a long distance to reach a bathroom or kitchen. Moreover, in between uses, hot water waiting in that long pipe cools off as heat is lost. As a result, the next time you turn on the hot faucet, there’s a long wait while cold water runs down the drain and hot water finally arrives.
Cold Water Wasted
It’s more than an annoyance. Wasted water while you wait for the hot water to arrive can add up to as much as 15,000 gallons per year, depending on typical household usage and the diameter of water-supply pipes.
Perpetual Hot Water
A water recirculator creates a loop that continuously moves hot water to the end of the pipe, where it’s first in line every time you open the faucet. No more waiting for hot water and no more wasting cold water down the drain. Here’s how the sequence works:
- A pump is installed at the home water heater.
- A secondary hot-water pipe extends from the water heater to the fixture(s). Each fixture also receives a temperature sensor that monitors water temperature and actuates a valve.
- When the sensor detects that the temperature of the water in the hot-water pipe drops below a preset level — usually around 80 degrees — the valve at the fixture opens and the pump at the water heater actuates.
- Water that has cooled down is pumped out of the main hot-water pipe supplying the fixture and looped back to the water heater through the secondary pipe.
- Newly heated water flows forward in the supply pipe from the water heater to the fixture, replacing the cold water.
The process involved with a water recirculator confers two benefits:
- Hot water is always the first water to come out of the tap.
- Cold water wasted down the drain is eliminated.
Ask the plumbing pros at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing for more information about installing a water recirculator.