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Old 11-28-2022, 08:13 PM
 
22,357 posts, read 65,763,229 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CCCyou View Post
Op, if this is to 'save money' - you probably won't save any!

The built-in thermostat normally will cycle/run the heating strip, usually only for a short period, to 'maintain' the temp range.

If you 'turn it off' for three days, the heating strip will have to run continuously /full blast for that whole hour to bring the cold water back up to temp - using at least as much energy as three days of brief cycles.

What will save money is lowering the thermostat temp (to 120), AND putting an additional Insulating Blanket, or even two, around the wh to minimize idle heat loss;
a wh blanket $20 (or even 2) ,
will be cheaper than a wh timer - $69 - https://www.homedepot.com/p/Intermat...0D89/100088282
Correct. I did the math a while back. I would also add that insulating the first three feet of pipe carrying hot water is actually THE most cost effective thing you can do. Commonly, that heated copper pipe sits with zero insulation, making a perfect radiator.

For those who think circuit breakers will be damaged, I addressed that before. To give an idea of the depth of my experience, each projection booth in a theatre has a minimum of twenty circuit breakers - some being ganged breakers where more than one breaker gets tripped. A six-plex therefore has 6 x 20 breakers to cycle - 120 breakers or more - JUST for the booth and not including lobby or concession. I couldn't count an exact number of theatres under my supervision at any one time, but very conservatively, figure fifteen, some larger, some smaller. Some of the theatres were from the early 1950s. To repeat, flipping breakers on and off does NOT significantly damage them. I got to see that in person and in repair invoices. After reviewing my answer overnight, there was a Thomas Lamb designed movie palace that had a couple of breakers that might have been from the 1940s that took a couple of times to set, and one theatre in Tamarac Florida that had been struck by severe lightning that had about a half-dozen wonky breakers, but that place had the entire main entrance blown up by a reverse strike. If there is a breaker that you have flipped that was damaged, it was a defective breaker.
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Old 11-28-2022, 08:36 PM
 
570 posts, read 520,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WRM20 View Post
If you really need a switch, put a wall switch in, rather than using the breaker, especially the AFCI breakers that are required these days that cost $40 each.

Thank you very much for this suggestion. It makes sense. The water heater is in the basement, on a sort of raised pedestal 6" high. It's about two feet from the wall. Where exactly would the wires run?
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Old 11-28-2022, 09:25 PM
 
4,911 posts, read 5,261,162 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Last1Standing View Post
Thank you very much for this suggestion. It makes sense. The water heater is in the basement, on a sort of raised pedestal 6" high. It's about two feet from the wall. Where exactly would the wires run?
Where does its power come from? It has to come out of a wall or from the ceiling somewhere.
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Old 11-28-2022, 09:32 PM
 
4,375 posts, read 2,290,327 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Last1Standing View Post
Thank you very much for this suggestion. It makes sense. The water heater is in the basement, on a sort of raised pedestal 6" high. It's about two feet from the wall. Where exactly would the wires run?
Why not just use the thermostat that's on the front of the water heater to turn the heat level up and down as desired? Turn it up to the desired temperature just prior to your one-hour usage. Then turn it down to a low (but not OFF) setting after you're through using the hot water. No need to keep flipping the circuit breaker off and on all the time.
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Old 11-29-2022, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
41,322 posts, read 71,730,636 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WRM20 View Post
If you need hot water every few days, get a tankless model that is designed to sit there without heating the water. If you really need a switch, put a wall switch in, rather than using the breaker, especially the AFCI breakers that are required these days that cost $40 each.
There it is!

For any application where you will regularly use circuit breakers as a switch, they should be rated as Switch.

A bit of reading on it:

https://www.c3controls.com/white-pap...ker-vs-switch/
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Old 11-29-2022, 10:43 AM
 
Location: Anchorage
1,563 posts, read 1,096,671 times
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Still no answer on why. Inquiring minds want to know!
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Old 11-29-2022, 11:26 AM
 
3,991 posts, read 6,416,433 times
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If, for some reason, you feel you NEED this, a switch is the way to go.

In reality, I (like many others here) would love to know WHY you want to do this. If energy/$ savings are the goal, the switch or timer isn't really the good option you think it is. Lower the water temperature, add some insulation and look elsewhere to save money in your home. You'll be spending dollars to save pennies, if you save anything at all.

Last edited by Sunbather; 11-29-2022 at 12:35 PM..
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Old 11-29-2022, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
16,704 posts, read 61,581,593 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Last1Standing View Post
Where exactly would the wires run?

This says everything about this thread!
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Old 11-29-2022, 11:50 AM
 
Location: WMHT
4,448 posts, read 5,034,699 times
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Exclamation Resistive electric on-demand (tankless) water heaters for whole house water should be avoided

Heating setback will always save you a little money. Probably not enough to justify the time and investment and chance of growing bacterial colonies in your water tank.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CCCyou View Post
If you 'turn it off' for three days, the heating strip will have to run continuously /full blast for that whole hour to bring the cold water back up to temp - using at least as much energy as three days of brief cycles.
That is not how thermodynamics works. Energy consumed would never be "at least as much", there will always be some savings, but with a new highly-insulated water heater, you will only save a few bucks.

My old electric water heater was on a dedicated meter (at a lower rate),. I figured out that just keeping the water hot, with zero hot water use, cost me approximately $75/month!

So I converted to gas-fired tankless.

If you live in a region where you're mostly using air conditioning, you might consider upgrading to a new hybrid electric water heater with a heat pump. When you aren't consuming hot water, the heat pump will pull heat out of the air (reducing the load on your air conditioner) to maintain the tank temperature. Some models can even be fitted with ducts so you can pull air from the conditioned space and/or dump the cooler air into conditioned space.
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Old 11-29-2022, 12:34 PM
 
22,357 posts, read 65,763,229 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
There it is!

For any application where you will regularly use circuit breakers as a switch, they should be rated as Switch.

A bit of reading on it:

https://www.c3controls.com/white-pap...ker-vs-switch/
Except that theatre projection rectifier circuits use ganged breakers larger than the 20 amp limitation cited in the spec. - and those were among the ones flipped thousands of times. The word "eventually" is a wonderful wiggle word. If you eat a donut, "eventually" you will die! That is a totally factual statement that is also nonsense. If you flip a breaker as an on-off switch, "eventually" it will fail. Define "eventually."

What we have in this disagreement is very simply the difference between empirical and theoretical knowledge that is largely based upon hearsay and two factors - an overabundance of caution by manufacturers in a litigious society, and a desire to sell other products.

Nonesuch's post stating that his electric water heater was costing $75 per month was a surprise to me, and I would question it except that it is empirical knowledge. I had put water heating at about $30/month in my area, but I keep forgetting that this area has low electric rates. Also, IIRC there is usually a monthly charge for a separate meter. I know because I have one for a shop that costs me about $30 per month now, and it is unused for months sometimes.
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