Smart water distribution design through structured plumbing design and water recirculation systems, can save energy, reduce hot-water wait-time, and save water. The following structured plumbing and recirculation design strategies are based on the research of the California Energy Commission engineer Gary Klein's research. Recommended strategies include:
> Central Plumbing Core to minimize the distance of hot water fixtures from the water
> Trunk and Branch distribution system, with adequate Pipe Insulation. Half-loop recirculation design recommended
> Multiple water heaters including smaller instantaneous/tankless water heaters for high volume demand fixtures (master bedroom, kitchen)
> Recirculation products with temperature sensors.
The half-loop recirculation distribution design, has a trunk and branch distribution system, and a recirculation pump with temperature sensor located equal distance (half-loop) from the central plumbing core (circle). Gary Klein's "Saving Water and Energy in Residential Water Distribution Design" discusses the current issues, potential savings, various water distribution design and possible solutions.
Recirculation System & Structured Plumbing Save Water, Reduce Hot Water Wait Time, and Save Energy
The following video by Home Depot, demonstrates the installation of a hot water recirculation pump:
Also see our post on top water recirculation systems in the market today, and on Tankless Water heater 101.