Water Heater Temperature Setting Guide

Most homeowners have never given much thought to the temperature setting of the hot water heater in the home. What precisely is the best temperature level for the heater? In this article we will examine the pros and cons of various settings for one to decide what setting will be best. The most important thing to bear in mind will be the health concerns we will discuss.

Many water heater manufacturers have a factor preset temperature of 140 degrees. If one has never looked that this from having a new water heater installed, this is probably what it is set at if you have never changed it. It it not easy to read what the true temperature is on some models for the dial may say warm, hot, really hot. Though a water heater may be advertised to reach super high temperatures, but it really isn’t necessary to go above 120 degrees.

When the temperature dial don’t have degrees markings, fill a glass of hot water from a faucet and record the temperature with a cooking thermometer.

How to Save on Energy Saving Costs With Ones Water Heater Temperature Setting

It is thought that by adjusting the setting from 140 to 120 degrees can save 6 to 10 % of the energy used from the heater. In money, this would be about $6 to $20 a year in savings. The U.S. Department of Energy says that a temperature setting of 120 is the best strategy to cut back on home energy costs.

If by the end of this article one thinks an even lower temperature setting would be appropriate for ones home, then obviously most money can be saved.

Potential Health Risks Of Water Heater Temperature Settings

There may be health hazards if the hot water temperature is not high enough. Legionella bacteria is the concern here. It could grow between the temperatures of 68 to 122 degrees. So, if ones water heater is set less than 122 degrees, there does exist the chance it could develop inside the water storage tank of the water heater.

What are the potential dangers with Legionella bacteria? A variety of pneumonia can be transferred if an individual breathes water that Legionella bacteria has infected. This tends to most often happen when breathing water moisture from a shower. The drinking water is usually ok.

Approximately 8,000 to 18,000 Americans contract this yearly says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and between 5 to 30 % of these cases are deadly. So if one is more susceptible to getting Legionella Disease, one needs to be mindful of not having too low of a water temperature level setting.

What Are Reasons to Reduce Water Heater Temperature

The main reason to not have ones water heater temperature set to 140 degrees is the risk of receiving water scalds or burns. For those with young children or older adults in the home, this should be considered. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends a setting of 120 for these factors. They do now make bath faucet slip covers that have a LED temperature reading. These can be a handy devise to have too.

It is good to look at ones dishwasher manual to see what the minimum temperature setting should be for it. Many models call for high temperatures, so keep this in mind when turning the water heater temp down.

This is often a challenging subject to make a decision upon. Hopefully these details and the following infographic will help one make the best decision for ones home.

Water Heater Temperature Setting Debate

From Visually.

Section Navigation

Temperature LevelĀ  – You are Here
Conserve Hot Water

Back to Maintenance and Care