Inventive heating design delivers instant hot water to every faucet
By Mike Hanlon
September 30, 2006
October 1, 2006 When we saw the technology behind this inventive line of hot water circulation pumps we just had to give it a mention. Having to wait for hot water at the faucet is inconvenient at best, but this system offers the convenience of having hot water at every faucet in the home instantly and is claimed to save up to 15,000 gallons of water annually for a typical family of four. Offered as both a retrofit and new installation, the system installs under the sink or faucet farthest from the water heater-where hot water has to travel for the longest time.
Laing Thermotech has developed a number of innovative products to solve this problem for homeowners, including the Autocirc1 and Autocirc2 and UltraCirc pumps. Claimed to cost less than 10 cents a day to run, these products can conserve enough energy to pay for themselves in less than two years.
The Autocirc is geared for retrofit applications, while the UltraCirc is designed for new construction. Both systems integrate easily with the existing hot water supply line and can be installed by homeowners or their local plumber.
The Autocirc1 pump installs under the sink or faucet farthest from the water heater-where hot water has to travel for the longest time. A built-in temperature sensor automatically turns the pump on when the water temperature in the hot water supply line cools down to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool water in the hot water supply line is then pumped back into the cold water line and back into the water heater. Hot water will also be instantly available at all other faucets in the supply line between the water heater and the faucet where the Autocirc pump is installed.
The Autocirc2 works in a similar fashion to the Autocirc1, except it has two components: a pump and valve. The Autocirc2 pump is installed at the water heater and controlled by a timer, while the valve is mounted under the sink farthest from the water heater. When the hot water supply line becomes cool, the adjustable thermostatic valve allows the cool water in the hot water supply line to flow into the cold water supply line, replacing it with hot water.
The UltraCirc is a compact recirculation system that includes a timer-controlled pump and several valves. A return line is run from the last tap on the hot water supply line back to the water heater. Hot water is circulated in the supply line and immediately becomes available whenever someone turns on the faucet.