Are Smart Water Heaters a Smart Choice? - Biard & Crockett

Are Smart Water Heaters a Smart Choice?

A shower head with water streaming out of it

Smart thermostats, smart refrigerators, and smart lighting are all pieces to a smart home that can give you greater control over your environment. However, it can be hard to know when to jump on the bandwagon. When is it really worthwhile to add a smart device to your home?

Today, we’ll tackle smart water heaters. This new innovation in smart home technology is growing in popularity as the smart appliance movement gains steam. So, is it the right time to go ahead and invest in one? Is it the right choice?

No one can make the final call, but you. However, here are some of the main advantages for your consideration:

Energy Savings

The main benefit of smart water heaters is that they help you save big time on your energy costs. Heating water is often a big chunk of your energy spending, usually right behind your home heating and cooling expenses.

How? You can control your water heater remotely and make it turn off and on throughout the day based on when you’ll actually need hot water. Rather than having the heater run all day to keep water warm and ready for you when you’re at work or sleeping, let your water heater rest. These rest periods mean you can avoid paying for hot water when you don’t really need it.

Some smart water heaters even learn your schedule automatically and function based on the hours you seem to use hot water the most. Of course, you can override this function should your schedule change.

Bacteria Smarts

Certain bacteria can flourish in the water heater if the water is only lukewarm. Some of these bacteria are Legionella bacteria, which can give you a flu-like illness. However, some smart water heaters know the water temperature that will kill these bacteria and can cycle up to hotter temperatures periodically to keep you safe.

Alerts and Leaks

Many smart water heaters may also include leak detection systems that can alert you should anything unusual come up. This can save you big time by helping you minimize water damage should a leak occur.

Save Money

Energy savings means you save money, but there’s more! If you live in an area where the price of electricity varies depending on the time of day, you can also plan your water heater usage around those hours. Then, you can make sure that your water heater cycles off during the times of the day when energy costs are higher.

How Much Are Smart Water Heaters?

It depends. There are even some devices, such as aquanta, that can be installed on just about any existing water heater, even the traditional tank models. These devices offer you all of the smart features without even changing your water heater. At about $150 for the device, you’ll easily recuperate your investment in energy savings.

Also, some smart water heaters require the use of more modern models, including options such as tankless water heaters. These are pricier and can run upwards of $1000 just for the heater. However, many find that tankless heaters are worth it due to the extra space and lack of a flammable component.

Yet, other companies also offer devices for use alongside your smart water heater and controlled using one app. These integrated systems provide convenience for those who don’t want to operate a million apps, one for each appliance.

Overall, depending on how efficient your water heater is and how often you’re gone during the day or on vacation will influence how much savings you can achieve. But, in the long term, you’ll probably see some significant changes to your monthly bills.

The Bottom Line

Smart water heaters have a lot going for them. They help you reduce the amount of energy you use which is easy on both the environment and your wallet. Also, they offer some built-in safety features such as leak detection and ensuring the heater doesn’t create a bacteria breeding ground. However, they seem to be most useful for people who aren’t at home all day and may use hot water at a moment’s notice. That being said, you could still cycle off your heater while you’re sleeping.

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to invest in a smart water heater is your call. But, as far as smart home technology goes, they are growing in popularity for a reason. Smart water heaters help you save, and that’s something that benefits every homeowner.

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