On?off switch for water heater

I would like to install an on/off switch for my electric water heater at the cottage instead of using the breaker to turn it off or on, is there any reason I should not do this? What type of switch should I use? I have an older 40 Gallon water heater using a 2 conductor (black and red) #12 copper cable.
Thanks.
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Binder Dundat wrote:

Andy replies:
No reason not to, providing you can find a switch with sufficient capacity --- at least the rating of the breaker supplying the heater.....
I would suggest using an air condx disconnect box since they are very cheap ahd have high capacity.
If you have a problem finding a switch with the proper rating, you could just install another breaker at the desired location, since they are cheap and rated appropriately. The disadvantage is that they don't have as many cycles in their lifetime, but that shouldn't be a problem for you, and they are easy to replace...
Just a couple ideas.....
Andy in Eureka, TExas
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Product called "Little gray box", it has a timer in it that allows the hw heater to be turned off when no need for hw. It has adjustable timer 'on, off' arms. Or leave them out, and you have a switch to turn it on or off. About $20 at big box stores in the plumbing section.
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You would need a "double pole" (4 connections) switch rated for the amperage of the circuit (30 amp?). Also there is a water heater timer. Links below...
Double pole 30 amp switch... http://electrical.hardwarestore.com/14-53-double-pole-switches/double-pole-quite-toggle-switch-680143.aspx
7 day water heater timer with manual mode and on/off switch... http://www.rewci.com/inehwaheti24.html
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Not sure what you are looking for. The 'Little gray box' is a Hot Water tank switch for 220v.
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Thanks for your help, could not find the switch or timer at the Home Depot here in Ottawa, Canada? Don't know if our Electrical code does not allow them? But did find a shut off safety box with a pull out switch you insert one way for open and the other for closed, it was under 15 bucks, even though it was a little bigger than I needed it works fine.
Bill wrote:

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