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Start Saving Energy with Your Rheem® Smart Water Heater

Andrew Zoellner
December 22, 2023

OhmConnect’s partnership with Rheem means that you may be able to connect your smart water heater to OhmConnect, start earning more rewards, and save more on energy costs. If you have a Rheem smart electric tank or heat pump water heater with integrated EcoNet® Wi-Fi technology, you can connect to OhmConnect!

Water Heating’s Impact on Energy Usage

Your water heater consumes up to 20% of your home’s energy usage, second only to your HVAC system in terms of overall energy use. So how do tank water heaters work? Tank water heaters heat water to a set temperature. The water heater turns on when the water temperature drops below that set temperature to recover from cold water entering the tank or heat loss. The tank is insulated to minimize heat loss and can function as a thermal battery storing hot water until needed. Typically, water in a tank loses a degree or less per hour when not in use.

American homes use 100 gallons of hot water on average for daily bathing, washing hands, dishes, and cleaning laundry. Most hot water usage happens in the morning (when folks are getting ready for the day) and again around dinner time and into the evening. The rest of the day, water sits in the tank, losing heat and being reheated. With a Rheem smart water heater, you can take more control of your energy usage by scheduling your water heater to heat up during off-peak hours and adjusting the water temperature down when electricity is more expensive (peak hours). Much like a smart thermostat, you can set your water heater to have hot water ready when you need it and save energy when you don’t.

Connecting Your Rheem Smart Water Heater to OhmConnect

Given how much energy your water heater uses, optimizing the settings is a great way to conserve energy during OhmHours and AutoOhm events. Connecting your water heater to OhmConnect is straightforward. Here are the steps:

  1. Log in to your OhmConnect account
  2. Click on “Devices”
  3. Search for Rheem and then click “Link”
  4. Log in using your EcoNet credentials to authorize the link between OhmConnect and your EcoNet account.

That’s it!

During energy-saving events, OhmConnect will attempt to reduce your water heater energy consumption by changing its mode and its water temperature. This will be done automatically to help you earn Watts, and no action is needed on your part. If we cannot make a change that will save energy, then the device will not participate in the event which means you won’t earn watts. Also, if you override the changes during the event, OhmConnect may not count your water heater as participating in the event.

Most importantly, during an event, avoid activities that will draw significant amounts of hot water (such as laundry, dishes, baths/showers) to ensure maximum energy savings. Because your water heater is well-insulated, water will still be hot after the event is over.

Why a Heat Pump Water Heater is Worth an Upgrade from Standard Electric or Gas

Water heaters are not appliances purchased often, so it’s great to stay informed on your water heater’s health and replace it before something goes wrong. Tank water heaters typically have a 10-year lifespan – and Rheem ProTerra Hybrid Electric heat pump water heater is 4 times the efficiency of a standard electric water heater. With the Energy Efficient Home Improvement Tax Credit (expanded 25C), you can get a nice rebate when you install a heat pump water heater. Combining these rebates with energy cost savings, most homeowners break even on the project cost (water heater + installation costs) in less than a year. For folks in California, you may have access to a rebate through a specific program designed for heat pump water heaters, making it even easier for those considering making the switch.

If you currently have a gas water heater, you can replace it with a 120V heat pump water heater with minimal to no electrical work. Switching from a gas water heater to a heat pump water heater helps lower your home’s carbon emissions through a reduction in energy usage and lets you take advantage of an electric grid that is getting cleaner every day.

Connect your Rheem smart water heater today and start saving even more energy!

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