Turn your water heater off or down when you're away

Why? Water heating is one of the biggest energy users in a typical home. A standard water heater keeps hot water available at all times in its tank. If you are away from home for several days, turning off your water heater or setting its thermostat to "vacation mode" can save a considerable amount of energy and money.
Step by step:
  1. Plan ahead. If you plan to be away for three or more days, remember to turn the water heater's thermostat down to the lowest setting or turn it completely off.
  2. Turn it down or off.
    • Electric water heater: To turn it down, use the temperature dial on the water heater. To turn it off, switch off the circuit breaker to which it's connected.
    • Natural gas water heater: If you do not know how to relight the pilot light, it's best to just turn it down or to "vacation mode," not off.
  3. Turn it back on. When you return, restore your water heater to the normal temperature—120°F is sufficient for most homes.

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