Green Chalice: Stewardship of our Resources

As part of our Earth Day celebration in worship on April 18th, Stewardship Coordinator John Grose presented a brief but fact-filled PowerPoint slideshow on energy, conservation, and the environment. He packed a lot into just a few minutes and just brushed the surface. Moving forward, John plans to use this space to highlight and expand on some of that information.  

This month, in light of all the drought warnings and in some areas, restrictions, we will focus on a water-saving device that can be used in anyone’s home. You may not think about this, but do you realize how many gallons of water you send down the drain, unused, while waiting for the water to get hot? An average home has 125 feet of 3/4 inch pipe. This holds 3.14 gallons of water. If hot water is used 10 times per day, 31 gallons of water is wasted running the faucets/shower to get the hot water. In a year, this equals 11,461 gallons of water. Over twenty-five millions homes waste approximately 300 billion gallons of water annually. You pay for this potable water, wasted energy and sewage fees.  

Installing a hot water recirculation system saves TIME, ENERGY and WATER. Recirculation systems can be used with tank or tankless water heaters. They are easy to retrofit in existing homes (most installations take less than ½ hour). How does it work? A small pump at the tank or tankless heater, or installed under the sink, forces the lukewarm water from the hot supply line into the cold supply line. If a dedicated return line is used it returns the lukewarm water to the heater. (This pump is so energy efficient it costs only $3.00 - $8.00 per year to run, paying for itself in 1 to 3 years.) A sensor/switch built into the pump or a by-pass valve transfers the lukewarm water into the cold pipe. The valves maintain average 93° F at the sink. The under sink pump starts when temperature drops to 85° F and stops when it reaches 104° F.  The pump runs about 3 times an hour for 2 minutes. A built-in 24-hour mechanical timer allows the user to set the time when he wants instant hot water. An ON CALL button, motion sensor or app can also activate the system.  For more information, here’s a video you can check out, also:


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