Our gas 40 gal hot water heater does not keep a constant temperature
unless it is used every 3 - 4 hours. My wife gets up 45 minutes
earlier than the rest of the family and the water is noticeably cooler
when she showers. Also, if we are away all day and a bath is run, it
runs out very quickly. After vacation, we put a load of washing
through and wait 1/2 hour before we shower.
Is this usual for HW heaters? Once it's used during the day it's fine,
three of us shower in a row and it's hot enough. It seems that as long
as it gets intermittent use it's OK.
I would appreciate any comments.
The thermostat (control) on gas heaters often has a very wide
differential (degrees between turn-on and turn-off).
Overnight, the temp in the heater will drift lower and lower,
but not quite reach the turn-on point.
You *may* be able to improve on the situation by replacing the
control (not repairable) but its cost is a large fraction
of the heater cost. If the heater is old (>5 yrs), I would
change out the heater.
In the meantime, you might experiment with a slightly higher
thermostat setting, as long as you don't scald people...
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