Recirculation Pumps: How To Get Instant Hot Water

By: Samantha Green

 

In many older or larger homes and commercial buildings, it may take awhile for the hot water to reach the plumbing fixtures that are located further from the water heater. Waiting seconds or even minutes for your hot water to turn the perfect temperature gets old real quick. This not only wastes time, it wastes water. If you’ve been wondering why it takes so long to get hot water in your own home, you may want to install a recirculation pump. A recirculation pump keeps hot water at the ready, through a system that slowly pumps hot water through your hot water pipes and back to the water heater through either a dedicated line or through the cold water line.

How Does A Recirculation Pump Work?

Recirculation pumps are installed on the hot water side of a water heater. A recirculation pump is then installed at the sink farthest away from the water heater. The recirculation pump recycles your hot water every half-hour or so, allowing instant hot water to any of the fixtures in your home. The temperature activates the recirculation pump prompting it to open and filter out the cold water. When the hot water reaches the recirculation pump, it closes to prevent hot water from flowing through the cold water line. Cold water in the hot water line is sent back to the water heater to be used at a later time.

Most recirculating pumps come with a built-in timer that lets you to set the pump to turn off at night when you are least likely to need hot water. This feature saves you energy in your home.

Do I Need One?

A recirculation pump is perfect for anyone who lives in a home or building that experiences long wait times for hot water. Not only does it help draw instant hot water, when you turn on the hot side of your faucet, but it helps conserve water. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, 10 percent of all water drawn for showering is wasted while waiting for hot water to arrive. By recirculating the cold water, you reuse the water that would’ve been otherwise been wasted.

The amount of water they save, makes recirculation pumps a clear solution to the problem of wait times for hot water.

 

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