Getting your hot water heater settings right just in time for the Winter season is very important. It can affect whether you will start your morning off right, with a nice hot shower, or poorly, freezing and cold on those chilly mornings.
Here’s a Perth plumber’s guide to determine the optimum temperature for your hot water heater.
Rules and regulations
In Western Australia there are certain restrictions regarding the temperature of your hot water heater. The plumbing law dictates that your household hot water temperature cannot be set below 60°C.
This rule is set to prevent the spread or growth of bacteria, where the same rule applies for all gas, electric, solar, or heat pump systems. The heat is meant to kill any bacteria found through your pipes and drainage, making it safe to shower and drink, if needed.
It is important to note you should leave setting up the temperature of your hot water to the professionals to avoid damaging the heater, or any health and safety risks.
A new hot water heater is typically preset by the government to the regulated temperature of 60°C. Arguably, some people prefer a setting of 50°C, it all depends on personal preference.
The advantages of choosing your ideal temperature
By altering the temperature of your water heater to 50°C rather than the preset 60°C, there are actually some benefits which will follow.
The lower temperature is better for the environment as it takes less energy to heat and maintain the temperature of the water whilst stored.
You will also find that you are saving money with a lower temperature, as less energy is required. If you don’t mind a slightly cooler shower, it might be worth reducing your hot water setting to save that extra bit of money every month when your water bill is due.
You’ll find that there is less mineral buildup in your piping and fixtures, as the colder water is less likely to deposit as many harsh minerals as hotter water.
Finally, a colder temperature will prevent any injuries or discomfort from scalding. The hot water that is expelled from your shower does have the potential to cause serious and damaging burns to the skin which could be fatal. Although this may not seem like a possibility as a fully functioning adult, it may be something to consider if you have young kids or the elderly living with you, who have more sensitive skin.
Despite all of these benefits, there is an overriding concern with the colder temperature. As mentioned previously, colder temperatures will not be able to kill the harmful bacteria found in your pipes as well as a hotter water can. Although rare, the bacteria found can cause pneumonia like diseases which can result in death.
What temperature is right for you?
You should definitely consider opting for the lower temperature setting if you are living with toddlers or the elderly, as the bacteria is more manageable than serious scalding or burning as a result of water temperature.
If you are concerned about the bacteria, it is also possible for your plumber to install an anti-scalding device, which will help to regulate the temperature whilst your children or the elderly relatives are showering.
However, if you are not classified as one of these high risk groups we recommend opting for the higher temperature to fight off the bacteria, and also gives you one less thing to worry about.
For all hot water guides and plumbing concerns call No Probs Plumbing and Gas
No Probs Plumbing and Gas are your hot water specialists to help keep your home warm and cosy all Winter long. Our dedicated team of specialists cover all areas of Perth and are on call 24/7 for all of your plumbing needs.
We pride ourselves on delivering memorable servicing and providing competitive pricing on hot water systems, repairs and installations. To find out more about our hot water systems available please see our website, or call us today to request a quote.