Electric Hot Water Heater Temperature Settings: A How-To Guide

Before we dive into the steps to adjust the temperature settings, let’s review some basics about electric hot water heaters. A typical electric hot water heater has two heating elements – one at the top and one at the bottom of the tank. Each element is controlled by a thermostat, which regulates the temperature of the water. The temperature range of most electric hot water heaters is between 120°F and 140°F.

Turn Off the Power Supply

Before adjusting the temperature settings, turn off the power supply to the water heater. Locate the circuit breaker that powers the water heater and switch it off. If you have trouble locating the circuit breaker, consult the owner’s manual or contact a professional.

Access the Thermostats

Remove the access panel cover from the side of the water heater to access the thermostats. The access panel cover may be held in place with screws or clips. Use a screwdriver or pliers to remove the screws or gently pry open the clips.

Set the Temperature

Once you have accessed the thermostats, use a flathead screwdriver to adjust the temperature settings. Turn the temperature dial to your desired temperature. It is recommended to set the temperature to 120°F to prevent scalding and save energy.

Test the Temperature

After adjusting the temperature settings, wait at least an hour before testing the water temperature. This will allow the water to reach the newly set temperature. Use a thermometer to check the temperature of the water at the faucet closest to the water heater. If the temperature is too high or too low, make further adjustments to the temperature settings and wait another hour before testing again.

Tips and Tricks

  • It is important to adjust the temperature settings in small increments to avoid overheating the water and causing damage to the tank or plumbing.
  • If you have a large household with high hot water demand, consider increasing the temperature settings to ensure you have enough hot water.
  • On the other hand, if you have a small household or do not use much hot water, consider lowering the temperature settings to save energy and reduce the risk of scalding.
  • If you are unsure about how to adjust the temperature settings, consult the owner’s manual or contact a professional.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can adjusting the temperature settings save me money on my energy bill?

Yes, adjusting the temperature settings can save you money on your energy bill by reducing the amount of energy required to heat the water.

What is the recommended temperature setting for electric hot water heaters?

The recommended temperature setting is 120°F to prevent scalding and save energy.

How often should I check the temperature settings?

It is recommended to check the temperature settings at least once a year to ensure proper functioning of the water heater.


Adjusting the temperature settings of your electric hot water heater is a simple process that can help ensure consistent hot water temperature and save you money on your energy bill. Remember to turn off the power supply before making any adjustments, adjust the temperature in small increments, and test the water temperature after making adjustments. If you have any questions or concerns, consult the owner’s manual or contact a professional.

Miss Angela

Miss Angela is a technology enthusiast and expert. With a passion for all things tech, she spends her days researching, testing, and writing about the latest gadgets, laptops, printers, cameras, headphones, and more. Her goal is to provide in-depth, unbiased reviews and news to help her readers make informed purchasing decisions. With a background in both technology and writing, Miss Angela is dedicated to delivering high-quality content that is both informative and entertaining. Follow her journey as she explores the latest and greatest in the world of technology on TechSmrts.com.

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