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Efficient Water Heating in Restaurants



Efficient Water Heating in RestaurantsRestaurants and commercial kitchens use A LOT of hot water.  In fact, it’s probably one of your larger energy expenses in a given month.

Tips to Cut Costs

  • Set water temperature to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Your dishwashing unit should have a built in booster heater that heats water to the required 180 degrees for dish sanitization. If it doesn’t, it’s more efficient to purchase a booster heater for the dishwasher than heat all your water to 180 degrees.  There’s no benefit to spending the extra energy to heat your water past 140 degrees, and reducing the heat can save you some significant money.
  • Insulate hot water pipes. Pipe insulation is cheap to buy and easy to install, and the energy you can save from such a simple technique is considerable.
  • Fix leaks right away. Whether it’s faucets or dishwashers or pre-rinse assemblies, fix whatever is leaking hot water right away.  A leak is just money going down the drain, something you can ill afford.
  • Use aerators and low-flow pre-rinses. Faucet aerators and low-flow pre-rinses reduce the amount of water you use and the amount of wastewater you produce, both of which will save you money.
  • Use the automatic flue damper. Most commercial water heaters have a flue damper that seals in heat when your water heater is idle.  Make sure this damper is working.
  • Set the timer on the recirculation pump. If your hot water heater has a recirculation pump, set or install a timer so that it turns off during non-business hours.  This prevents heat loss through the hot water pipes and could result in hundreds of dollars worth of savings.
  • Buy Energy Star rated water heaters. If you are replacing or installing a new heater, only buy Energy Star rated units and shop around to find the most efficient one available.

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One Response to Efficient Water Heating in Restaurants

  1. Scott Taylor March 2, 2009 at 2:11 pm #

    Another option would be a modulating tank-less water heater system. For commercial environments, you may need to link two or more together, but with the ability of these units to modulate the temperature based on demand, you are never heating more water than you need and at the correct temperature to boot. This does not necessarily eliminate the need for a booster heater on your dishwasher, but it sure is efficient!
    All the other water saving techniques listed are great, fixing leaks, a recirc system w/timer, pipe insulation are all freat ideas, as well as low-flow faucets and spray valves. These are a good idea whether you are replacing your existing water heater or not.

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