Category Archives: Energy Efficiency

Affordable DC Plumbing Upgrades That You Should Consider Installing

Plumbing upgrades to any household affect the entire plumbing system of that residence. Whether you are considering selling your home, adding value to it or finding a return on your investment, plumbing upgrades are becoming inevitable. The new fixtures and plumbing line will not only enhance the appearance of your kitchen or bathroom, but they will also incorporate new functionalities that will make your life easier and more convenient.  If you are in DC, there are many professionals who can help you with your DC plumbing upgrades. The following are some of the affordable upgrades you can use to boost the value of your home and increase its beauty.

 

Kitchen Faucet

 

The trending kitchen faucets are the hands-free and the touch-activated faucets. While these two technologies have been readily available in the public bathrooms throughout our cities, maybe it was not yet the time for you to make upgrades in your kitchen. Every major plumbing company manufactures these new faucets, hence they are readily available and pretty convenient. The selection of the styles and finishing for your kitchen faucets are many, so make sure you select the right one for your kitchen. Moreover, these kitchen faucets will add value to your kitchen and give you convenience that is usually underrated.

 

Self-Cleaning Toilet

 

In order to save time and get your toilet cleaned in a short while, manufacturers have designed a self-cleaning toilet. Using the modern technology and at an affordable price, this toilet has become a new trend in the modern homes and also in bathroom remodels. Just by the push of a button, your toilet is refreshed and scrubbed clean using the chemicals that pour into the bowl. To save you from embarrassment during parties and when entertaining guests, this toilet is worth the investment.

 

Showers

 

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There is nothing as good as a hot shower. Nowadays, a shower is no longer a routine rather it has become an experience.  With the advancing plumbing technology showers are becoming soothing, refreshing and more interesting. The technology that is trending currently is the rain shower head. Unlike the normal shower heads that come out of the wall, the rain shower head comes from the ceiling simulating rain. With this shower, there is no angling of the shower head or ducking underneath it in case you are tall. The rain shower head also comes with LED lighting installed. This lighting keeps changing depending on the temperature of the water.  This shower head provides you with an ambiance during your morning shower experience and also lets you know when the temperature is the way you like it.

 

Water Heater

 

Traditional water heaters waste a lot of resources due to the fact that they let hot water sit in the pipes until it cools. This means that you will always have to run the water for it to be heated, wasting a lot of energy. To avoid this waste, you can opt for a modern water heater that has an on-demand circulation pump. These modern systems do not waste as much energy, and you won’t have to run the shower a few minutes for you to get hot water. The modern water heater will save you a lot of money in the long run and also provide you with great comfort and convenience.

In conclusion, in case you have not upgraded your plumbing system and fixtures for some time, you could be incurring losses unknowingly. However, there are many ways in which you can cut on your water expenditure. This will not only help you save money on your bills, but it will also add value to your home. Upgrading your plumbing system does not have to be a huge ordeal. You can seek the advice of a plumber in DC for professional advice on which DC plumbing upgrade to install as well as hire them for quick installations and maintenance services.

Three Features To Consider When Choosing A Showerhead

Showers have an impact on our daily lives. They can be used as a tool to set the tone for the day, provide a resting place at night, or refuge from daily stress. The right type of shower head can make a difference when it comes to reaping the benefits of this enjoyable task.

Finding the right type of showerhead to use when performing DC plumbing renovations can be overwhelming. Before beginning your search, there are a few things that need to be considered. The water conditions of your home, water pressure, and your budget should be taken into consideration, prior to making a purchase.

Most people that choose to update their showerheads during a renovation will want the heads to perform specific tasks. These tasks include saving water, offering varying spray options, and filtering chemicals and toxins out of the water. Finding the right type of showerhead for your renovation project is important.

 

Saving Water

 

Appliances that are water efficient are popular these days. However, state and federal regulations dictate what types of appliances can be used in each state. Opt for a showerhead that uses no more than two gallons of water per minute. Checking with a local company offering water conditioning and plumbing services can ensure you get the best appliances to fit your needs.

 

Spray Options

 

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Our wants and needs change daily, it only makes sense that our showerheads adhere to our moods. After a stressful day, you may choose to get into a light and relaxing shower. Or after a long workout, you may want to feel like you are standing underneath a waterfall, and increase the pressure of the spray.

The good thing about modern technology is you can get a showerhead that offers multiple spraying options. Most models have a minimum of three spray patterns to choose from. This puts you in control of how the water from your shower will hit your body.

 

Filter Chemicals And Toxins Out Of The Water

 

Most adults are aware of the chemicals that are used to filter water. Even though the water that is brought into a home has gone through a chemical cleaning process, toxins do get left behind. Water treatment facilities need to ensure the water is safe to drink and use, they do not have to ensure that it is chemically clear.

Chlorine is one chemical that is used to clean water. Most people who are sensitive to chlorine should consider having a showerhead that filters the water. Sprite showerheads are the most common type of showerhead used that filters harmful chemicals from the water. The showerhead will filter chlorine, lead, sediment, and odors.

Plumbing renovations can be fun, if they are being done because of a want and not a need. There are lots of advanced appliances that can be installed in the space. The appliances are designed to make your bathroom experience enjoyable. The showerhead is one thing that gets overlooked in many renovation projects.

Showering is an integral part of the day, and should be enjoyed. This is time for yourself to either get yourself ready to start your day, or relax yourself before going to bed. Picking the right type of showerhead with the features that you want can make all the difference.

Five Crazy Things People Do To Ruin Their Plumbing

If you are searching for a career with job security, consider becoming a plumber. This advice is based on two inevitable truths. First, people are always going to need access to plumbing that works properly. Also, people are always going to do questionable things to stop their plumbing from functioning correctly. Keep in mind that being a plumber is an admirable job.

The crazy things that people do to ruin their plumbing can be remarkable. There are five things that create plumbing issues that can be avoided. To some, avoiding a plumbing issue may seem like common sense. There are people that are unaware of what they should do to maintain their homes’ plumbing systems correctly.

 

Do Not Leave Hoses Connected In The Wintertime

 

Leaving a hose connected to the water faucet outside is a common plumbing error. Unlike Christmas lights, water hoses can damage your plumbing, if not removed during colder seasons. If the hose freezes onto the spout, this can impact the faucet and the supply line. Not to mention, you will have to replace your hose as well.

 

Do Not Use Lots Of Drain Cleaners

 

When used properly, drain cleaners can effectively help clear clogged drains. But anything can be hazardous when it is used in excess. If too much drain cleaner is used, it can corrode the drain materials, and make the clog worse.

 

Do Not Pour Grease Down The Kitchen Drain

 

Most people can recall watching their mothers or grandmothers cooking, and pouring the grease from their meals into the kitchen sink. If this has become a habit for you, stop doing it. Pouring grease down your sink can destroy your piping system. Grease is one of the most common reasons why drains clog.

 

Do Not Put Anything Into Vent Pipes

 

Most people do not understand what the significance of a vent pipe is. There have been people who have run electrical lines such as television cable into their homes through their plumbing vent pipes. Contrary to widespread belief, vent pipes do serve a purpose.

The pipes are put into place to allow air to flow through the drains. This helps to promote drainage, and prevent suction. The air flow also helps eliminate sewer gases that come through the sewer main. If a hole is cut through the vent pipes, sewer air will seep into your home, requiring you to call on sewer services in DC to fix the issue.

 

Do Not Throw Trash In Your Toilet

 

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Not throwing trash into a toilet seems like common sense. But one of the most common reasons why plumbers are called into a residence is to fix a clogged toilet that is caused by an object. There are lots of people that believe if they flush something down the toilet, they will be rid of it forever.

When something is flushed down the toilet, it does not disappear into the great beyond. Instead, it will lead to a drain pipe that is roughly three inches around. This pipe leads into a different drain pipe that controls the drainage in your entire home. Trash can accumulate in one space, causing a huge clog in your entire piping system.

 

Three Ways To Make Your Bathroom Water Efficient

Renovating an existing bathroom, can be an exciting and fun challenge. With all the things to consider, water or energy efficiency may be two factors that get neglected. The good news is it is not hard to perform bathroom remodeling in DC. This is thanks to new regulations.

It does help to familiarize yourself with the available options to make your bathroom efficient. When creating an energy efficient bathroom, there are three areas to focus on. Focus should be given to the toilets, bathtubs, and showerheads.

 

Toilets

 

When considering water efficiency in your bathroom, you need to start with the toilet. Flushing the toilets in a home account for one third of overall indoor water use. Older toilets use more water than the newer ones available. Houses that have a toilet that was made before 1994 are wasting 3.5 gallons of water, every time that the toilet is flushed.

In comparison, new toilets use 1.6 gallons or less, per flush. This equates to a significant amount of savings on your water bill. There are some models that provide separate flushing options. For liquid waste, to be flushed, these toilets use 0.8-1.1 gallons. While solid waste uses 1.6 gallons.

 

Bathtubs

 

When it comes to water efficiency, bathtubs get a bad rap. It is understandable, why they are looked at negatively, in this regard. The average bathtub holds anywhere from 30-50 gallons of water, if it is filled up. Before banning anyone from using the tub in your home, keep in mind that choosing a shower over a bath does not make a difference.

The longer you choose to shower, the more water you will use. Most people prefer to shower, and will save bathing for a few select days out of the week. Filling up a bathtub to the half-way point can help cut back on water waste.

 

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Showerheads

 

The shower is another water-guzzler. Showerheads that were made before 1994 can use up to eight gallons of water per minute, when used for a basic showering session. The updated showerheads use a lesser amount. New showerheads are capped at the amount of water they disperse. The newer showerheads use roughly 2.5 gallons of water a minute.

Lesser water does not mean lesser force. The new showerheads still provide a steady stream of water, just like the previous ones. Low-flow showerheads do exist, but many people are disappointed by the way that they operate. The newer showerheads can help you get an enjoyable shower with using insignificant amounts of water.

People want to save money on their household bills, so they can afford to spend their money for other things they require. When updating or remodeling a bathroom, you need to pay close attention to the appliances that are going to adorn the area. The toilet, bathtub, and showerhead are three upgrades to consider when performing a bathroom remodel.

These three appliances are known for using substantial amounts of water to function. Updating the appliances to newer versions can help conserve water. Low-flow options are also available for added water savings.

How To Stay Warm During The Chilly D.C. Winters

D.C. is lucky in that its winters aren’t as severe as winters in some other cities (Have you been to Minneapolis in January?!). That said, winters in the capital can get pretty chilly and, on rare occasions, downright brutal. This article will list some ways that you can crush the cold here in the Washington, D.C. area. Hopefully these tips will help make your D.C. winters a little more pleasant. As far as traffic is concerned…well…you’re on your own there.

 

Winterize Your Home

 

There a few steps that you can take to make sure that your home is ready for a D.C. winter. Most of these steps are meant to ensure that cold air does not come into your house and hot air does not escape. One cheap and easy step is to put a thin, insulating film on your windows. These can be purchased at D.C. area home improvement stores, and can work wonders in preventing heat escape. Speaking of windows, upgrading to storm windows is the best way to make sure your windows are keeping the heat in, and the cold out. D.C. area home improvement stores also sell draft guard: thin strips of insulation that you can place beneath your door, to prevent airflow in the gap between the door and the floor. For a larger overhaul, upgrade to fiberglass insulation. Fiberglass is the optimal material for insulating your home. Finally, make sure all cracks and gaps in your home are sealed tight. Use a caulking gun to seal any cracks you might notice. These simple steps will all add up to make you a lot warmer.

 

Optimize Your Appliances

 

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Obviously, it is important to make sure that your heater is in good working order. If your heater starts malfunctioning once the cold kicks in, call an HVAC company to come repair it right away. It is also important to make sure the filter in your furnace is clean. This is a simple step that you can take to optimize your furnace’s performance. Make sure your water heater is working right as well—there is nothing worse than taking a freezing cold shower on a cold winter morning! If your water heater is not working right, there are plenty of good plumbers who provide water heater repair in DC. If you do find that the water in your house is not as hot as it should be, try turning up the thermostat first. If that does not help, it is time to call the professionals.

 

Don’t Break The Bank On Utilities

 

Furnaces and water heaters are great devices for D.C. winters, but your utility bills can add up very fast. On days when it is just a little chilly, try to see if you can avoid cranking up the thermostat. Bundling up is a good option for beating the cold, even indoors. It may seem a little silly to wear a coat and hat in your own living room, but this can greatly reduce your utility bill. Oh, and if you are lucky enough to have a fireplace, use it!

How To Conserve Energy In Your D.C. Home

Our nation’s capital is a very green city. Many D.C. area residents are extremely environmentally conscious and their lifestyles reflect it. This mindset affects all areas of life here in D.C.: shopping, dining, transportation, even the daily aspects of home life. Regarding the latter, if you are a homeowner here in Washington, chances are you are looking for new and creative ways to cut down on energy use. Doing so is not only helpful for the environment, it is helpful for your utility bill as well! Given the skyrocketing prices of energy here in D.C., energy saved is money earned! This article will highlight some ways that you can do your part for the environment, while saving some serious cash.

 

Cut Down On Water Use

 

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This is one of the easiest lifestyle changes you can make. There are simple steps that you can take to greatly reduce the amount of water used in your home. For one, try not to leave the water running when it is not being used. This might seem like a simple step, but it is one that many people sadly neglect. How many times do we leave the water running while brushing our teeth, for example? All of that water just goes straight down the drain! Another, slightly more radical, step is to turn the shower off during the actual lathering and washing process. This is known as a “navy” or “combat” shower, due to its use in the military. And try not to shower for too long. It may be comforting to stand in the hot water, but this leads to gallons and gallons of waste! Speaking of hot water, make sure that your water heater is as efficient as possible. Any leaks or malfunctions can lead to huge water waste. If you have this problem, there are many D.C. water heater repair companies who are able to fix it, and get you back to optimal efficiency.

 

Cut Down On Electric Use

 

As with water, this is another simple lifestyle change. It could involve something as cheap and simple as changing your current lightbulbs for more energy-efficient bulbs. Speaking of lights, always turn them off when they are not needed. This is another simple, obvious energy-saving step that many people forget about. Also, while summers can be very hot and humid here in D.C., avoid using your air-conditioner as much as possible—it is a huge energy guzzler! Try opening windows and using fans to get air flowing throughout your house, using the air-conditioner only at times when it is unbearably hot.

 

Outfit Your House For Maximum Energy Efficiency

 

There are energy-saving changes that you can make to the physical structure of your house itself. And no, this doesn’t have to involve solar panels (though they are a great idea). Installing more energy-efficient windows that reduce air leakage can greatly cut down on energy use over the course of a year. Speaking of air leakage, make sure your home is properly insulated, and that there are no cracks or leaks in the walls or roof of your house. Finally, installing a fireplace can greatly cut down on heater use, and save you energy during those chilly D.C. winters!

The Importance Of Regular Routine Water Heater Maintenance

Your water heater is an essential part of the plumbing system for your home or business. Because your water heater is the device that delivers hot water throughout your home or business, it’s important to keep your water heater in good condition. Your water heater should be both tested and maintained on a regular basis in order to ensure that it’s running efficiently. A professional plumber is the best person to test and maintain your water heater.

 

Save Money On Utility Bills

 

Keeping your water heater in good condition will help your home or business save money on your utility bills. And since your water heater is used more frequently when cold weather strikes, saving money on your utility bills is pretty important.

 

Types Of Water Heaters

 

There are many different types of water heaters such as gas, electric, and hybrid water heaters. A professional plumber has the skills and knowledge to repair or replace any type of commercial or residential water heater.

 

Routine Upkeep And Maintenance

 

Regardless of the type of water heater that you have routine upkeep and maintenance are essential in order to keep the unit running properly. You should have a professional plumber test and flush your water heater on a regular basis typically in autumn before the weather gets too cold. Testing the water heater ensures that it’s running like it should. Flushing the water heater is the process that removes the sediment that can build up in the unit over time and cause it to run slowly or to break down.

 

Other Simple Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your Water Heater

 

There are a few simple things that you can do to both conserve water in your home or business while getting the most out of your water heater. For example if you run your wash machine and dish washer only during the evening hours it can reduce the stress on your water heater and save water at the same time.

 

Spacing Out Your Showers

 

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Taking showers one right after the other, not only puts unnecessary stress on your water heater, but it also causes the hot water to run out faster. And since no one likes a cold shower, it’s a good idea to wait at least ten minutes between showers. And if you have overnight guests in your home, politely ask them to do the same.

 

Find Water Heater Repair In Your Area

 

If you need to find a professional plumber to make water heater repairs in your area, word of mouth is the best way to go about this. If you’re looking for DC water heater repair, for instance you can always ask a friend, family member, a neighbor or even someone you work with for a trusted recommendation. You can use the internet too but that may require more research and effort on your part. Word of mouth recommendations are a quick and easy way to find a company that provides the specific services that you need. And when you ask someone you know for a recommendation you can also ask questions about pricing and customer service that may not be shown on a company’s website.

Water Conservation Tips

Since water is a finite resource, it’s very important to conserve it as much as possible. Although conserving water might seem like a daunting task, there are a few simple ways that you can reduce water use in your home or business to help make 2017 your greenest year yet.

 

Routine Plumbing Maintenance

 

One of the easiest ways to conserve water in your home or business is to keep up with routine plumbing maintenance tasks. Staying on top of preventive maintenance tasks such as small leaks and water heater maintenance and repair will help to conserve water in your home or business. A professional plumber can help you make sure all these necessary plumbing maintenance tasks are completed on a regular basis.

 

Kitchen And Bathroom Renovation And Remodeling

 

If you’re considering remodeling or renovating your kitchen or bathroom, it’s a great time to consider water conservation. A professional plumber can install low-flow faucets toilets, and appliances, which can help you and your family conserve water. If you’re in the DC area, it’s easy to find a plumber in DC who can assist you with making your home or business more environmentally friendly.  Your new kitchen or bathroom will be not only beautiful, but environmentally-conscious as well. And conserving water will save you money on your utility bills too.

 

Other Ways To Conserve Water

 

Even if you’re not interested in remodeling or renovating your kitchen or bathroom there are plenty of other ways to conserve water. One of the simplest things that you can do to conserve water in your home is to turn off the faucet when brushing your teeth. Another way to conserve water is to run your dishwasher and wash machine only in the evening. Installing screens on both the hot and cold water hoses on your washing machine will keep your appliance running efficiently. It will also save both water and electricity.

 

Garbage Disposal Maintenance

 

Keeping your garbage disposal clean and well-maintained is another way to save water in your home. A mixture of bleach and hot water is a simple way to keep your disposal clean without using harsh chemical cleansers. Baking soda can be helpful in reducing odors in your disposal as well. Something else to remember is to never pour kitchen grease or cooking oil in your garbage disposal.

 

Shower Pressure

 

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Reduced water pressure in your shower can lead to excess water usage. Soaking the showerhead in a mixture of vinegar and water overnight can improve the efficiency of your showerhead. A showerhead that runs at maximum efficiency can help you save water in your home.

 

Water Heater Maintenance

 

Keeping your water heater in good condition and repair is yet another way to conserve water. Your water heater should be flushed and tested on a regular basis, preferably in autumn when temperatures drop, which leads to more hot water usage. In order to conserve hot water, you should wait at least ten minutes between showers. This is especially important to remember if your home is filled with guests. These tips are easy ways to conserve water and save money in your home or business.

 

How To Find A Qualified Plumbing Professional

Finding a qualified plumber to make repairs in your home or business can be difficult. It’s important to make sure that the plumber that you hire is a licensed master plumber. A licensed master plumber can assist you with a wide variety of plumbing issues such as leaks and clogs as well as drain and sewer services. They will also repair your water heater or install a brand new one if necessary. They will even provide emergency plumbing services for both residence and commercial areas. A master plumber should provide you with everything in writing and give you upfront pricing so you’ll know exactly how much you’re paying for plumbing services or repairs.

 

How To Find A Professional Plumber In Your Area

 

If you’re looking for a professional plumber in your area, it’s a good idea to ask friends, family members or co-workers for a recommendation of a company that they’ve used in the past. For instance if you’re looking for a DC plumber, just ask around or search online to find the information that you’re searching for.

Other Services That A Professional Plumber Offers

 

A professional plumber can help you with your kitchen or bathroom remodeling or renovation projects too. Now is the perfect time to give yourself the gift of that brand new kitchen or bathroom that you and your family have always dreamed of. So if you’re considering a home improvement project, don’t take any chances by trying to do the work yourself. Hire a professional instead. You’ll be glad you did. And your holiday guest will be absolutely blown away by the transformation of your home.

 

Preventative Maintenance Plumbing Tips

 

If you have a plumbing problem, the best way to solve it is to contact a plumbing professional. However, there are a few plumbing maintenance tasks that you can do in between plumber visits in order to ensure that the plumbing system in your home or business has what it takes to handle the extra use that it will get this holiday season.

 

Garbage Disposal Maintenance

 

Maintaining your garbage disposal is an easy way to prevent plumbing issues in your home. This can not only prevent the spread of both odors and germs in your home, it can also prevent your pipes from corroding. Never pour cooking oil or kitchen waste in your garbage disposal or down the drain. You can use a combination of bleach and hot water to clean your garbage disposal and keep odors away at the same time. Baking soda also works wonders and it’s a lot more environmentally friendly than harsh chemical cleaners.

 

Reduced Water Pressure In Your Shower

 

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A simple fix for low water pressure in your shower is to soak the showerhead overnight in a mixture of vinegar and water. Then use a toothbrush to scrub away any remaining mineral deposits.

 

Water Conservation Tips

 

Run your washing machine and dishwasher during the evening hours in order to conserve water. You may also want to ask your plumber about installing a new water-saving low-flow toilet which will also save water and save you money on your water bill.

Water Heater Options

Most people individually consume far more than they produce. Despite this being true, most individuals do not consciously label themselves as “consumers.” Though the reasons for this lack of labeling may be many and varied, one reason people do not label themselves consumers may be rooted in the term’s perceived negative connotations. Of course, this doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, there is a movement towards becoming what is sometimes referred to as a “conscious consumer.” Not only does this movement exist today through publications like Consumer Reports, it has historically been able to gain traction among a much larger segment of the public.

 

Do A Little Research

 

The first step toward becoming a conscious consumer is understanding the options you have available before purchasing. Too often, people simply default to whatever option a salesperson presents or whatever option they observe or hear about from fellow consumers. A smarter consumer takes the time to understand their options and, most importantly, the difference between the options and which option might thus work best for their unique, individual situation. When it comes to purchasing things like cell phones, advertising and socio-cultural trends make the different options obvious to consumers. With less flashy items, people may not understand that there are different purchase options at all. Here is a look at one of those purchase items: the water heater. There are actually many water heater options available to consumers and each may be beneficial depending on an individual’s circumstances.

 

Conventional Storage

 

Conventional storage water heaters are the most popular option. They involve a storage container which offers a ready-supply of hot water. Conventional storage water heaters work by maintaining hot water at the top of the tank that is released when the hot water tap is turned on—cold water then comes in through the bottom of the tank to replace the lost hot water. They may be powered by a variety of fuel sources including natural gas, propane, fuel oil and electricity. One drawback to these systems is that because they maintain a constant supply of hot water, they use energy even when hot water is not being used.

 

Tankless

 

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Tankless water heaters, otherwise referred to as demand-type water heaters, provide hot water only when needed. This solves the aforementioned problem of energy loss inherent in conventional storage water heaters. With tankless systems, when the hot water is turned on, cold water fills the unit which is then heated by either gas or electricity. Another benefit of these systems is that the supply of hot water they provide is constant, rather than limited to the certain stored amount in a conventional system. A drawback to a tankless system is its constant heating of a smaller water supply limits its flow rate.

Heat Pump

 

Heat pumps are usually used in a home’s HVAC system to heat and cool the home, but they may also be used to heat water. Sometimes they function as the sole source of hot water, other times they operate as a supplement in a multi-part system. Heat pumps work with the heat that already exists (has already been generated) within a home’s energy system. Heat pumps use electricity to move heat where it is needed, rather than heat the water directly. Heat pumps can be multiple times more energy efficient than conventional water heaters, which work against the electricity of the house rather than with it.

Other types of water heaters include solar powered water heaters, tankless coil, and indirect water heaters. Another aspect of being a conscious consumer, of course, is proper maintenance of your purchases. Contact a DC water heater repair company if you think you may be interested in installing, upgrading or maintaining your water heater.