Hotels use massive amounts of water in nearly every single area of operation. Managers can cut costs by pairing an tankless electric water heater with an efficient water use strategy and energy saving products.
There are five key areas that see a large portion of water consumption, according to the Alliance for Water Efficiency – guest rooms, staff areas, the kitchen, laundry machines and the pool area. Here are some ways to cut into the bill.
Hotels that use a storage water heating system are just waiting for an accident to happen. These ancient systems are susceptible to spikes in temperature at the faucet. The last thing a tired person on a long business trip wants is to scald themselves because of a malfunction the hotel hasn't accounted for.
"Low-flow faucets can curb gpm rates by 50 to 75%."
Tankless electric waters have technology that allows maintenance teams to maintain temperatures within a degree. This means once they set it, they don't have to worry about it – and neither do hotel guests.
According to Code Green Houston, the average faucet pumps out water at 2.5 gallons per minute. This is incredibly inefficient for a hotel. Considering that guests usually aren't worried about the high utility bill, there's a small chance the sink could be left running. Hotels can increase water usage efficiency by installing a low-flow faucet to work in tandem with the tankless electric water heater to save on energy costs and limit the water flow down to 0.5 to 1 gpm.
Hotel employees' irregular water use can be detrimental to a utility bill. Storage water heaters suffer from standby heat loss. In this process, the water heater heats water in the tank so it can provide hot water to the end user. The water slowly loses heat as it sits unused. When staff goes to use the sink for warm water again, the system has to heat the water up, and ends up using more energy than necessary.
Don't waste energy by reheating lukewarm water. Electric tankless water heaters can be placed at the point-of-use to provide instant hot water on demand. This cuts down on the amount of distance the water has to travel, as well as the amount of heat lost along the way.
Another way to reduce water waste is by changing up the equipment. The AWE recommends swapping out old toilets for new toilets to cut down on the amount of water wasted. Old models average 3.6 gallons per flush, while newer ones only use 1.6 gpf.
Warm water is essential for the kitchen. It's used to cook and clean, and this usage ends up contributing to a large chunk of their utility bill. According to the Department of Energy, water heating on average is around 14 to 18 percent of a home's utility bill – about $400 to $600 dollars annually. This dollar amount skyrockets for hotels, which on average use a lot more warm water than a home.
By switching to a tankless electric water heater, utility customers save $100 on the yearly bill at the minimum. This number increases exponentially for hotels. This is because tankless electric water heaters use the energy provided much more efficiently than storage water heaters, which tend to waste it throughout the day.
Hotels go through massive amounts of laundry each day which ultimately contribute to a very high water heating bill. AWE recommends two alternatives:
- Ask guests to re-use sheets after just one day of use to cut down on the amount of laundry that needs to be done.
- Install energy efficient machinery.
Using a storage water heating system, in essence, doubles the amount of energy needed for just one wash. Tankless electric water heaters monitor the amount of energy needed to heat up the water and rarely use more than is necessary.
Guests can't be controlled, but machines can. Consider using cold water for a portion of your laundry to cut down on the amount of hot water used. Ultimately, the best decision may be to purchase energy efficient machinery to work with the tankless electric water heater at saving money.
There are a number of areas that hotels may pump water to outside of the building:
- Hot tub
- Outdoor shower
Hotels can insulate the first few feet of the output pipe leaving a tankless electric water heater to keep the heat as close to 120 degrees Fahrenheit as long as possible – this increases the efficiency of your tankless electric water heater. The system can also be installed at the point-of-use, which means the hot water has to travel less of a distance and will therefore provide warm water quicker and, in turn, be turned off much faster by guests.
The bottom line is that by switching the entire building to run off of multiple tankless electric water heaters, hotel owners can increase energy efficiency in all aspects of warm water use, thereby collecting a higher ROI.