gas hot water heater timer?


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Old 09-25-08, 06:46 AM
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gas hot water heater timer?

Is there such a thing as a gas hot water heater timer? Wife loves to turn the t-stat to hot, then goes to work and the water heater just keeps boiling the water all day long. Just looking to keep everybody happy!!!
 
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Old 09-25-08, 07:30 AM
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Can you elaborate more? Is this water heater a traditional American style gas water heater? Normally the thermostat is set at 120*-140* and left alone. And it should definitely shut off when the water is hot. "Boiling all day" is definitely WRONG! Something doesn't add up here.
 
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Old 09-25-08, 08:59 AM
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Sounds like the thermostat needs calibration or replacement. At 'normal' the water temp. should be 140*.
Most people can get along with 120* (warm setting) for showering, laundry. 140* may be required for a dishwasher if it doesn't have pre-heat built into it.
Other than getting a commercial water heater with an electric gas valve and thermostat, there is no way to set back a gas water heater, or a need to. Unlike electrickery, there is no off peak savings period for gas.
 
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Old 09-25-08, 09:08 AM
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Question

sorry...just used the term boiling away...I am sure that with the thermostat all the way up, the heater is comming on throught the day when it is not really necessary. Didn't know if there was a way to keep it from comming on all day when we are not home? i.e. some sort of relay or are there no electronics involved with a water heater?
 
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Old 09-25-08, 10:56 AM
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Normally, any newer well insulated gas water heater will stay OFF during the day until hot water is drawn. I've owned gas water heaters for decades, I've NEVER heard my water heater come on just in a static state (mine sits in a closet just off the family room, so I can hear it when its on). The heat losses are so low that the heater can sit for hours if not days without coming on if water is not drawn from it.

The common natural draft residential style water heaters have no electronic controls and cannot be modified to add timers. Doing so would void the heater's warranty and likely also at the same time void your homeowner's insurance coverage.
 
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Old 09-25-08, 12:05 PM
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Are we talking about using a hot water heater as a space heater along with hot water? In other words, are you talking about turning up the heating thermostat?

Need more info
 
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Old 09-26-09, 12:43 PM
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Gas water heater timer.com

A gas water heater timer is now available. It attaches to face of the gas valve and turns the water hater to the vacation setting with a 24 hour timer. Works great. Save energy and the life of the water heater. See [url=http://www.gaswaterheatertimer.com] for more information.

Jeff
 

Last edited by Jeffrey1; 09-26-09 at 01:01 PM.
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Old 09-26-09, 08:16 PM
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Jeffrey1 says there is.

(Welcome to the forums Jeffrey1)

FWIW -- my house had an electric WH when it was built ('56), and I installed a timer on that as soon as I moved in ('85). Got rid of that in about '88 or '89 and went to a recirc pump. Got rid of the electric WH in '96 and went gas. That's what we have now -- gas WH with a recirc system, and it works great.

I don't see where a timer on a gas WH that sets it on the VACATION setting for most of the day, then kicks it to a temp. like 120 or 130 is going to do much for you, other than make you feel good.

Here's where I'm at. My wife and I turn on the recirc pump in the morning for a couple of showers. That causes the gas WH to kick on and heat water. Once the water in the WH is at temp, the WH goes off, and it DOES NOT come back on again until the nest morning, when we turn the recirc pump back on again.

I'm a contractor. I'm home all day Sat., and all day Sun., and recently, FAR TOO MANYweekdays in between. Trust me, that water heater DOES NOT come on except when we turn on the recirc pump in the morning.

A gas WH timer like Jeffrey1 is talking about is mostly a joke!! It makes no difference whether my 'stat is set at 120 degrees or "VACATION" -- the WH doesn't come on either way during the day or the night.
 

Last edited by plumbingods; 09-27-09 at 09:16 AM.
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Old 09-27-09, 09:13 AM
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The Gas Hot Water heater Timer is deffinately not a joke. The location and the efficiencey rating of your water heater will certainly be a factor as to how much standby heat loss occurs. This gentelman apparantly has an ideal situation. Gas water heaters have more standby heat loss than electric water heaters and electric water heater timers have been in use for decades.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 09:18 AM
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I beg to differ with that Lefty. Gas water heaters that are natural draft will start up on there own to keep a minimum water temp. because they have a flue going up the inside cooling the tank from the flue. If the water heater is vented through a wall with a forced venter, then it may retain the heat in the tank for much longer. So to say all gas water heaters do NOT come on all day or on vacation is a false statement.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 09:23 AM
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Basically all a gas valve timer is a timer on the thermostat of the heater so the heater will not sense a hot water demand until the timer is in the on position. Quite simple concept actually.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 10:41 AM
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The Gentleman from Plumbing Gods Is aware of the common problem that I have experienced in over 35 years of plumbing experience in altitudes of 2400 to 7000 feet. I forgot to mention that Lefty lives at an altitude of 495 feet. His summers are filled with triple digit heat days and mild winters. His ground water is at least warm. These are factors which affect the effiencey of your water heater as well as the type of water heater and it's location.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 11:04 AM
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Jeffrey, you are exactly right. The only thing that you left out is the lack of demand that my wife & I have for hot water.

During the summer, the only gas that we use is for the WH. That bill runs about $6 to $8 per month. And because my WH is sitting in the garage, I have very little heat loss from the WH during the summer. Last July, when we were out of town for 2 weeks, the gas bill was only $4. I doubt that the WH ever kicked on while we were gone.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 11:19 AM
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Just to throw in here...

I live 3000 ft up in elevation, our water comes from deep wells into the local aquifer. I don't know what the water temp when they pump it out is..but when it comes out of my faucets in the SUMMER, I can almost turn the hot completely off when I shower. I checked it previouslywhen I suspected the WH of a problem and it was over 90 on the cold side. I just checked it with a thermometer and it was still over 80...this is with 60 degree nights and 90 degree days the last week or so, not like the 80 degree nights and 110 days of mid summer. My WH never kicks on except in the mornings for showers or when I'm doing laundry or dishes.

I'll have to remember to check during the winter and see how things change.

Personally...adding one more thing to fail to a WH is not something I would do. Newer more efficient WHs would probably take quite a while to recover the cost of the device I would think.

I notice no price is given on the website..just a link for a "Pre-order". And it pretty much looks like an off the shelf timer with a cobbled up gear drive mechanism. Doesn't give me much confidence in the seller...sorry.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 11:39 AM
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The seller's product is beginning it's production phase. Price and availability will be coming soon. The gas Water Heater Timer has been under development for 4 years. The timer shown is a 24 hour timer which can be repalced with any home automation control of your choice. 90 degree inlet water is very unusual with 100 degree weather. The Gas Water heater Timer would not benefit your situation.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 11:45 AM
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Cost savings might not recover the cost but since this is a DIY site I'll suggest a homemade solar preheater. Water pipes here are often in the attic and in the summer cold water is almost to hot to touch sometimes for two or more minutes just from setting in the pipes in the attic so imagine an intentional heater on the roof. Just a thought.

P.S. After reading some of the summer gas bills in here and comparing them to mine I may have to preaure test my gas lines. Always something.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 11:51 AM
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We really never have any freezing weather here..so no doubt much of the supply piping is above ground or just barely below. IIRC I saw that our local frost line was something like 4-6"? Of course that changes 8 miles away where they are at almost 7K feet.
 
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Old 09-27-09, 12:00 PM
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Ray,

You need to realize that I've got a recirc pump on my hot water system as well. I run virtually no water down the drain at any faucet waiting for the water to get hot. The longest wait that I have is in the shower, where there's about 7' of 1/2" copper pipe from where the return line for the recirc system ties in to the shower head.
 
 

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