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Want Hot, Waste Not - February 15, 2018

It felt great when I screwed in the low-flow faucet aerators and shower heads last spring. Now, with below zero Fahrenheit temperatures that we had in Boston in the last few weeks, I could feel how much longer I was waiting for the hot water to caress my hands, especially after shoveling 18 inches of snow.

Of course, it takes longer because the water held in the pipes is still the same volume. So, what am I saving if I let the cold water—that was hot in the first place—run until it gets displaced by new hot water? The answer is nothing unless I can prevent the hot water from becoming cold.

Mentioning this to an acquaintance, I was amazed that he already had a solution. He keeps the water moving, as it is done in hotels and large buildings, but without resorting to a pump. He installed additional pipe to make a loop so the water would thermo-siphon, keeping the hot water much closer to his hands whenever he wants it.

Alright, my next project for the house, weather permitting!

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