With "instant on" via a pump and a conventional tank water heater, you
still may want to raise the hot water temperature on the tank to
increase the heat storage and not run out of hot water as quickly.
I think your problem is that you have a large amount of water that
cools, and you have to wait until that is displaced by heated water
before you get hot water at the faucet.
It follows that your supply line is too long, or too wide. Take a look
at it. If it is routed indirectly, shorten it; if it is 3/4, replace it
with 1/2 inch. I think insulation won't help much as it will not keep
the water in the line hot overnight, or when it is not used for a few hours.
I solved a similar problem by running a second line from near the
farthest faucet back to the bottom of the water heater, forming a loop.
I insulated the supply line and left the return line uninsulated, and
a check valve prevents backflow. Since the supply line is insulated,
the water in there remains hotter. When it cools, it is forced through
the return line to the heater. This works for me because I have a
multi-story house (long vertical runs), I was able to install it easily
when we were doing a tearout remodel of the bathroom, my plumbing is all
indoors, and I live where we have far more heating degree days than
cooling days. There is some inefficiency as it is like a radiator, and
I have to heat a little more water than before, but on the other hand it
uses no electricity and less water than before, and runs constantly and
silently. I have had it in over two years now, and I am still amazed at
the instant hot water, what a luxury!
In Atlanta, with plumbing in a crawlspace, this might not be the best
option for you. You might consider tankless heaters near the point of
use, possibly even eliminating your current water heater.
SPAMBLOCK NOTICE! To reply to me, delete the h from apkh.net, if it is
Yes, there should be a dedicated return that goes back to the cold
water inlet of the water heater . Put a check valve in the return line
so the water can't go the wrong way when the pump is off. Use a
stainless steel or bronze or hi temp plastic pump. I see a lot of
people use iron body pumps to save money, they die quickly & put rust
in the water. you can also return to a tee installed at the drain valve
on the water heater.
Easier to do with a crawlspace or basement than with a slab.
Sonetimes you have to go back into the cold line under the sink, but
that can cause problems, like putting hot water into the toilet &
cracking the toilet tank due to water temperature shocking the tank.
"W.D." <wdanis at NO SPAM yahoo dot com> wrote in message
Nor much to do that is efficient. Recirculating pumps give the hot water
fast, but you have a pump running and heat loss along the way. Insulating
helps, of course.
No matter how hot the water in the tank is, the water in the pipe has to be
emptied first. Not a cheap solution, but the point of use heaters reduce
the time to just a few seconds. I have no idea of the cost to have one
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