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Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1

how hot should a water heater be set?

we are moving next week into a home that has hot air heat and a seperate water heater. atm we have a oil burner with a coil insert and have to run the high end at 180deg and the idle or low at 160 so that the heat in the house is hot enough(old home not so well insulated), however without the need of home heating should a water heater be only set around 160?
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports



cowspotter

join:2000-09-11
Ashburn, VA
kudos:2

I just upped our hot water heater a little bit so it our hot water can last longer, and my new setting is around 130-135. 160 is way too hot for just providing hot water supply.



mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3
reply to Kearnstd



Agreed. Most heaters end up in the 120-130 range. 160 can cause instant scalding burns...



61999674
Gotta Do What Ya Gotta Do
Premium
join:2000-09-02
Here
kudos:1

1 edit
reply to Kearnstd

I agree 160 is way too hot, I believe the suggested temp is 120, many have it at 140 which is too hot.

If you have children or people with limited faculties in the house you should set it so you can keep your hand under the hot side with out seriously burning.
--
Looking for fly shit in pepper.



joako
Premium
join:2000-09-07
/dev/null
kudos:6
reply to Kearnstd

If its a newer house the newer shower valves have a silly safety I need to set my water heater hot enough so it can scald me so I can get decent hot water out of my shower due to its "safety"
--
Am Heimcomputer sitz' ich hier, und programmier' die Zukunft mir



Ken
Premium,MVM
join:2003-06-16
Markle, IN

said by joako:

If its a newer house the newer shower valves have a silly safety I need to set my water heater hot enough so it can scald me so I can get decent hot water out of my shower due to its "safety"
If someone really wanted to defeat that feature, it is possible. I took mine apart, and did. I wouldn't recommend it though if you have any children in the house.
--
Business: MerrittConstruction.com | Personal: KenMerritt.com | Xbox Live:KENMERRITT COM


jack b
Gone Fishing
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-08
Cape Cod
kudos:1

4 edits
reply to Kearnstd

120 - 130 should be more than hot enough for most household needs.
If the tank runs out due to long showers, you could turn it up higher, and then mix more cold water at the point of use to stretch the stored hot water. Or get a larger tank.

Keep in mind anything over 120 can be a scald risk.

Tap water delivered at 140 degrees F can cause a full-thickness (third degree) burn in 3-5 seconds!
Most adults will suffer third-degree burns if exposed to 150 degree water for just two seconds.
--
~Help Find a Cure for Cancer~
~Proud Member of Team Discovery ~



joako
Premium
join:2000-09-07
/dev/null
kudos:6
reply to Ken

said by Ken:

said by joako:

If its a newer house the newer shower valves have a silly safety I need to set my water heater hot enough so it can scald me so I can get decent hot water out of my shower due to its "safety"
If someone really wanted to defeat that feature, it is possible. I took mine apart, and did. I wouldn't recommend it though if you have any children in the house.
How?
--
Am Heimcomputer sitz' ich hier, und programmier' die Zukunft mir


fcisler
Premium
join:2004-06-14
Riverhead, NY

My shower, which is the combo hot/cold single knob, is adjustable.

If you pop off the "cover", there is a small phillips screw. If you loosen that screw you can then adjust a "stopper". This sets the upper bounds of where you can turn the knob to...left being hot (and the "stopped" side), and right (slightly above off) being coldest.


comp
Premium
join:2001-08-16
Evans City, PA

mine had that too but in the degree of a plastic stopper



exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3
reply to Kearnstd

Mine is set for 140.



fireflier
Coffee. . .Need Coffee
Premium
join:2001-05-25
Limbo
reply to Kearnstd

120-130 should be sufficient. Aside from the scald risk many others have already pointed out, setting it beyond the recommended temperature wastes energy maintaining a higher differential between the water temperature and the water heater's surrounding air temperature.
--
Wishes: When you wish upon a falling star, your dreams can come true. Unless it's really a meteorite hurtling to the Earth which will destroy all life. Then you're pretty much hosed no matter what you wish for. Unless it's death by meteor. --despair.com



Ken
Premium,MVM
join:2003-06-16
Markle, IN
reply to joako

It depends on the manufacturer but inside there is some type of adjustable stop. Sometimes you can just turn up the max, or there is usually some way to pull the stop out altogether so you can go past the max. That's what I did on mine, was just pull out a small plastic piece and throw it away. Now I can go about 10 degrees past the maximum.
--
Business: MerrittConstruction.com | Personal: KenMerritt.com | Xbox Live:KENMERRITT COM


Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
reply to Kearnstd

ahh ok guess im just so used to living with a boiler that is also the hot water heater i was seeing a different temperature scale. and yes in winter the water in the current house can get quite hot when the heat is on, infact i can make Ramen Cups with the kitchen tap(which has no scald guard).

so basicly start low and if showers seem cold work up till comfortable.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports



markwp2001
Spreadhead
Premium
join:2002-05-25
Long Beach, MS

said by Kearnstd:

ahh ok guess im just so used to living with a boiler that is also the hot water heater i was seeing a different temperature scale. and yes in winter the water in the current house can get quite hot when the heat is on, infact i can make Ramen Cups with the kitchen tap(which has no scald guard).

so basicly start low and if showers seem cold work up till comfortable.
The other benefit of doing this is that it will save you money versus operating it at a higher temperature than needed.
--
LHF's Football Master 2006


Pacrat
Old and Cranky
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-10
Cortland, OH
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to Kearnstd

Mine is set for between 120-130ºF... more than adequate for our need. The dishwasher heats that to 150ºF. For us, our hot water is just starting to be uncomfortably hot with just the hot water running. Showers need to be cooled just slightly. Hot water temps should never be set at or above 140ºF, as that, as has been mentioned already, is scalding, and potentially dangerous!
--
Every time I think I've hit bottom, somebody throws me a shovel!


Just Bob
Premium
join:2000-08-13
Spring Hill, FL
reply to Kearnstd

»www.naturalhandyman.com/iip/infw···ust.html



DotMac4
Shill H8r
Premium
join:2007-10-26
Huntington Beach, CA
reply to Kearnstd

I set mine to 120.



guhuna
5149.5
Premium
join:2001-03-31
Clayton, CA

My water temp is 138.9. Just fine for me.



Bradmph

join:2006-03-01
Spokane, WA

1 edit
reply to Kearnstd

I set mine at 140, by the time it reaches the final destination it is fine for me.

Ahhh that reminds me, Hot tub - set 102.

If I'm not mistaken, Restaraunts set dishwashers for 150+ for total sterilization, including the soap product.


shit

join:2003-07-14
Skowhegan, ME

Usually I set my hot water heater around 120 to 130, beyond 130 is dangerous and would cost more to heat.



HRM
God Bless America
Premium,MVM
join:2002-02-03
Darien, CT
kudos:1
reply to Kearnstd

Older water heaters in coils that are part of the boiler are very small. They usually have a mixing valve that adds cold water to the output. If that is your setup, 160 may be correct. The temp will not be anywhere near 160 at the taps, but this will gtretch your hpt water supply. A seperate tank or water heater it would be way too high.



NY Tel
Premium
join:2004-04-09
Smithtown, NY
kudos:3
reply to Kearnstd

said by Kearnstd:

we are moving next week into a home that has hot air heat and a seperate water heater. atm we have a oil burner with a coil insert and have to run the high end at 180deg and the idle or low at 160 so that the heat in the house is hot enough(old home not so well insulated), however without the need of home heating should a water heater be only set around 160?
When the temperature goes way down during the really cold, cold part of winter, setting it at 120 will prevent scalding. It will also keep your home very cold and impossible to heat.

I have a brand new Peerless boiler with a hot water coil and we usually keep a 20 degree spread on the aqua-stat (controls the spread of how high it will go and how low).
In the summer I set it at 120 low and 140 high
In the winter I set it at 140 low and 160 high.

Anything less than that keeps the house cold.

Ghostmaker

join:2003-01-20
Brunswick, OH
reply to Kearnstd

International code it should be set from 110-140 degrees F.

To kill legionnaires virus that grows in almost all water supplies it needs to be 137.5 degrees. Output from the boiler to the potable water system should be tempered below 140 degrees F

If you new shower and tub valves have anti scald features you need to adjust them by calling the manufacture. They should not be set higher then 120 degrees F. If you find you still run out of hot water your tank is undersized. Raising the temperature above 140 is stupid and dangerous to all.



jack b
Gone Fishing
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-08
Cape Cod
kudos:1
reply to NY Tel

...The OP will no longer have a boiler with a triple-aquastat making domestic HW.



PolarBear03
The bear formerly known as aaron8301
Premium
join:2005-01-03
reply to Kearnstd

160-180 degrees is insane! I've never seen a standard water heater that could be set for over 150.

I used to keep my electric water heater at 150 when I had a house full of roommates, 'cause we were always taking showers and doing laundry, and we'd run out of hot water if it was set any lower. But it would burn you instantly if touched.

Now that I have children, it stays at 120. I can scoop up pure hot water from the faucet and splash it on my face with just a slight touch of "ow". And now that it's gas, it heats as fast as I can use it, so I still haven't figured out how long I must shower before I run out.
--
There comes a point in your life when you get tired of fixing everything and wiping everyone's ass. But it’s not giving up. It’s realizing that you don’t need certain people and the bullshit and drama they bring to your life.



CylonRed
Premium,MVM
join:2000-07-06
Bloom County

said by PolarBear03:

Now that I have children, it stays at 120. I can scoop up pure hot water from the faucet and splash it on my face with just a slight touch of "ow". And now that it's gas, it heats as fast as I can use it, so I still haven't figured out how long I must shower before I run out.
With 2 kids, shows, laundry and dishes/dishwasher - ours is hot since we would run out after less than a half day of doing all of the above - mind you that is on the weekends with a new gas water heater (ok - less than 10 years old). I can stick my hands in the water without scalding but I used to do restaurant work and I love steaming hot water.

I don't think our water heater has a temp scale - just hot, warm and 2 or 3 settings in between. I will have to see how hit it is with the electronic temp guage...


61999674
Gotta Do What Ya Gotta Do
Premium
join:2000-09-02
Here
kudos:1

Mine has Hot, Warm, and Vacation as the main settings and two notches between each, I set mine one notch above warm, no children and pure hot is TOO hot but I like HOT showers so just a bit of cold does the trick.
--
Looking for fly shit in pepper.


comline

join:2006-11-21
Cleveland, OH
reply to Kearnstd

Yeah,

Unless Osama is in the shower. Now what I meant was.... Mine is @ 129.3 actual reading @ 1st faucet.. basement.. I must admit I love hot water and have 4 people using it but that is "high " compared to most. Th 1st flr. bat WILL scold you if you do not mix w/ cold!

C'ya



orph4824
I Ate What??

join:2001-04-26
Greeneville, TN

When I lived in my first apartment it has a medium sized electric 'cold' water heater kept the stat at 140 so that by the time it got to the shower it was just a tad to hot and had to add a bit of cold.
My current apartment uses a natural gas 'cold' water heater and setting it to 130 is sufficent.
--
Life's 3 rules: 1. Stuff happens 2. Stuff happens on a regular basis 3. Better get used to the first two... (not the actual saying but you get the drift)