Are you tired of waiting for hot water for your morning or evening shower?
There are just a few ways to get an instant hot water shower, these products will speed up your wait time from minutes to seconds.
Here is my review on the best hot water recirculators to get instant hot water for your whole home.
In this guide, I will go over a few ways to get fast hot water such as...
- Hot water recirculating pumps (water heater installs)
- Under sink hot water recirculating pumps
- Point of use tankless heaters (no need for a storage tank)
- Mini tank water heaters
- Electric shower head heaters
Let's get started with this guide!
How To Get An Instant Hot Water Shower?
One of the most common complaints of new homeowners is the long wait time to get hot water to their shower.
Sometimes during my home inspections, I am inspecting the shower and the homeowner is surprised that it may take several minutes for a particular shower to get hot water. I explain to them that it is common, and it is related to the size of the home, the size of their piping, and other factors.
My first recommendation to my clients is that they buy a hot water recirculating pump if they really want faster hot water to their shower or bathroom.
#1. Hot Water Recirculating Pumps
In my opinion, the number one way to get an instant hot water shower is through a hot water recirculation pump --- some cities even offer rebates for homes with these pumps.
This hot water system uses a small water pump (with a timer) that is installed above the water heater. In addition to the water pump, there is a one way water valve (called a sensor valve) that is installed under the sink farthest away from the water heater.
This "sensor valve" will open when the hot water temperature drops below 95 degrees Fahrenheit. It sends the lukewarm water into the cold water supply line as a temporary return back to the water heater --- creating a hot water loop. And once the sensor valve detects hot water again, it closes the valve, and you get instant hot water to your shower.
You will get fast hot water not just your shower, but you will get instant hot water to all of your plumbing fixtures in between the water heater and the sensor valve.
When I say instant hot water, I am talking about 3 to 12 seconds (in that range) rather than minutes.
#2. Under Sink Recirculating Pumps
There are some hot water recirculators that are designed to be installed under your sink.
These hot water recirculators will give you an instant hot water shower, but just like their cousins installed above the water heater --- you get fast hot water throughout your entire home. With these models, the sensor valve is an inside component of these pumps --- so there isn't a need to install a sensor valve separately.
One way to tell the different between the two recirculation pumps is that under sink models have four threaded plumbing nipples instead of two (which is required when installing under a sink).
#3. Point Of Use Tankless Water Heaters
My second top choice getting an instant hot water shower is through an on demand tankless water heater. These tankless units heat the water instant as water passes through the device.
In a bathroom, these are usually mounted under or very near the sink, shower, or on the wall. Many point of use tankless heaters have copper heat exchangers where the water passes through as its heated by a heating element.
Almost all of these point of use heater are completely electric. Their larger cousins --- for the whole house --- quite often use natural gas.
The smaller on demand tankless water heater are usually in the 3kW to 15kW range and are suitable for 1-3 fixtures.
Read Also: How Do Hot Water Recirculation Systems Work?
#4. Mini Tank Electric Water Heaters
Mini tank electric water heaters are also an effective way to get fast hot water to your bathroom.
Mini tank water heaters are similar to standard water heaters except that they are extremely small, usually on the order of 2.5 to 5 gallons of water. These tiny water tanks are usually installed under the bathroom sink or on the wall in the bathroom.
They store water in their small tanks and keep the water piping hot with their electric heating elements.
The great thing about electric mini tanks is that they don't require a dedicated return hot water line (or using the cold water line as a return). Of course, the downside, is that you will only be heating 1-2 plumbing fixtures rather than the entire home like you would with a hot water recirculating pump.
#5. Electric Shower Head Heater
My last recommendation for an instant hot water shower is with an electric shower head heater. This electric heaters work similarly to point of use tankless heater except that it is part of the shower head.
These electric shower heads heat the water in a safe way as water goes through the shower head.
If installed properly, these shower heads can be a safe and effective way to get a fast hot water shower. However, if poorly installed by a clueless person, these electric shower heads can lead to a potential electric shock. Please only have these installed by a licensed electrician.
Many of these electric shower head heater require a dedicated electrical line to the electrical panel --- and using a 30-40 amp breaker.
What's The Bottom Line On Instant Hot Water Showers?
Well, there you have it --- my top recommendations to get hot water fast to your shower. No more waiting minutes for a hot shower in the early morning --- feeling like a fish out of water.
In my opinion, I would prefer to go for a hot water recirculating pump because it really isn't that much more expensive than the other options (and may even be cheaper).
And with a recirculator, you can set it on a timer to save money, and you will get instant hot water for all of your home's fixtures rather than just a single shower.
I hope you enjoyed my article. If you have any questions or comments, please leave it at the bottom of this article in the comment box.