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6 Essential Tips for Using Water Heaters Safely & Efficiently

| Monday May 9, 2022

Water heaters are an indispensable appliance for every modern household. Through the use of electricity or solar power, these handy devices ensure a constant, comforting flow of hot water in every bathroom.

However, while we’ve come a long way from boiling water over an open fire for our baths, that doesn’t mean that we can operate completely free of safety precautions. Water heaters involve a unique combination of running water, high temperatures and live electricity in close proximity to our bodies.

With that being said, let’s take a few minutes to go through 6 safety tips on how to use your water heater safely and efficiently:

1: Always buy from a reputable brand

Water heaters have stricter safety standards than many other appliances. However, to enjoy these standards, it’s highly recommended to purchase your water heater from a reputable manufacturer that adheres to these guidelines.

When selecting your water heater, seek out established, time-tested brands.  

2: Keep it high and dry

For the convenience of shorter members of the household, it is often tempting to install water heaters at a lower position on the bathroom wall to cater to their height. However, installing your water heater in a position where it’s regularly in contact with water carries a risk of the unit short-circuiting. 

Instead, it would be recommended to install your water heater at the eye level of the tallest person in the household and avoid spraying water directly onto your water heater unit. For maximum safety, you may also wish to consider purchasing water heaters with an IP (Ingress Protection) 25. Water heaters that are rated with IP25 can prevent water from seeping into the components and cause damage to the water heaters. 

3: Keep the surroundings clear

Here’s a point that’s commonly overlooked. While water heaters are built to comply with strict safety standards, you should still apply and practice your own general and standard safety precautions when using water heaters.

It’s important to ensure that the casing and immediate surroundings of your water heater are free of clutter – especially clothes, sponges and any other flammable materials.

Water heaters are designed to reach high temperatures. Thus, having foreign objects cluttered around the unit creates an unnecessary fire risk. 

4: Installed and repaired by professionals

Water heater installation involves making several connections to the electrical grid and water supply. Should any of these connections be improperly secured, safety issues may arise.

To avoid such risks, always ensure that your water heater is installed and maintained by qualified electricians.


5:  If you’re choosing an electric water heater, check for an ELCB function

Have you ever wondered what the Test/Reset buttons on your electric water heater are for? They’re meant for the testing of the ELCB – which is short for Earth Leakage Circuit Breaker. The ELCB prevents electric shocks by disconnecting the water heater from the electrical circuit when it detects the excess stray voltage. 

Choose an electric water heater that comes with an ELCB function and test it at least once a month: Press the ‘Test’ button and the water heater’s power supply should switch off. Then press the ‘Reset’ button to resume normal functioning.

6: Look out for additional safety features

Water heaters have come a long way in the past few decades. As water heating technology advances, new features such as splash-proof casing and water temperature sensors have been introduced. This means that you’ll never have to worry about you or your loved ones being scalded or shocked in the shower.

Electrical usage is also far more efficient in newer water heaters – there are even solar-powered heaters for maximum savings on your electricity bill in the long run. 

With this in mind, why not consider Rheem when looking for water heating products? Rheem is an established, American water heating specialist that has been operating in the water heating industry for almost 100 years. Constantly winning industry awards for its advancements in customer safety, comfort and efficiency, you’ll always be able to find the perfect water heater to suit your needs at Rheem.

 Get your perfect water heater today!

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