Water heating is the second biggest use of energy in Canadian homes according to National Resources Canada. A majority of that hot water is used for showering. Wasted heat energy from shower drainage is an untapped source of savings for virtually every home.
A drain water heat recovery (DWHR) unit installed on a home’s DWV (drain waste, vent) pipe is designed to act as a “heat exchanger” and recycle that heat energy from shower drain water. As a result, it can reduce hot water heating costs and greenhouse gas emissions. The efficiency and effectiveness of a DWHR unit is lifestyle dependent however. In other words, high shower use households will obtain more benefit than households where baths are more common.
While drain water heat recovery units are more commonly installed in new construction, they most certainly can be retrofitted into an existing home. If you think you could benefit from the energy savings from installing one of these units, learn more and check out what CMHC has to say about how these units can save energy.