Want to save 100 per month?

We have electric heat and last Nov I installed a simple light switch in utility room to TURN OFF WATER HEATER WHEN NOT IN USE! year over year we saved 1404 in electric and rates have increased twice in this time Wow.Our provider said up to 40% of bill is keeping water hot.

We have ours on a timer now (29 bucks) and we have hot water 5-8 AM. I can come in at 2 and still catch a hot shower…we run dishwasher at 7 or so.

All our rentals have this switch and they LOVE it.

Try it and see folks…


Greg,I sincerely thank you for reminding me of the desirability to install a switch or a timer for the electric hot water heaters. I had those in all my apartments and homes in Canada. I have already ordered installations for all our homes in Texas. Again, thank you.

I love this idea. However, I’m trying to think of a simple way to make something like this work with a gas water heater.

The only thing I can come up with is some kind of gas valve controlled by electricity, controlled by a timer. But then there’s the issue of keeping/relighting the pilot light the timer kicks on, etc. Thus far, in my mind, I haven’t thought of a way to make this work with a gas water heater.





Could you please be a little more specific about this application. I’m curious about the timer you use as I cannot find info about it here. The wires for water heaters come directly out of junction box in the wall and then are either Romex or armored cable into the top of the tank. Where does this timer sit? Do you have a brand name and part number for it?



Wheat Hill

for 29 bucks Rolf. These are 220V timers not the ones for lights or sprinklers (110V) bought 22 of em for rentals and the bill was 750 with tax. It cost me 20 or 25 per unit to install depending if water heater was accessed from outside or inside. My handy person did em in a weekend and part of A monday. These timers are used in swimming pool backwash functions I believe…they are not waterproof but are water resistant.

One of my renters turns off all breakers except fridge circuit while he is at work (over the road trucker his last bill for power 44 bucks…mine 221 he’s onto something!)

Cutting electric usage is smart…for the investor and our planet.

Being a good businessman has little to do with home runs, it’s more about playing a well-run game, eh?

We saved over 1400 putting in one of these timers at home and it makes our tenants very happy also…win/win.



Thank you for this info. HD does indeed have them but the cost is $60 for the 7 day programmable ones and the flexibility they offer is worth the higher price. I only sell homes and I see these as a great marketing tool now that gas prices are going back up. I use bright yellow posters at various points inside and outside homes highlighting features and benefits and this will be a good one. I couldn’t care less if people ever use them as long as they help someone make a buying decision. I also plan to put out a notice to all the other residents in the community offering them a way to save money. The payback should probably be within a couple or three months.

More posts like this with useful information would go a long way toward making this forum more relevant. Grousing about problems and esoteric BS is a worthless waste of time. I’m in the Youngstown-Warren metropolitan area so don’t tell me how bad things are. I’m too busy solving problems and trying to beat my competition to listen to bellyaching but giving me tools like this will always get both my undivided attention and appreciation.


Wheat Hill

Rolf, you do realize that the moderators, as well as the owners, would welcome your contribution to make this forum

" I couldn’t care less if people ever use them as long as they help someone make a buying decision."

Sometimes taking a long term view of being magnanimous goes a long way toward lining one’s pocket. Most people in mobile home parks are not appreciated by the park owners. By giving, and even installing, a money saving device FOR them frees up their money to pay you first because you were so nice in thinking of them.


Rolf, you often seem rather negative no matter who you are interacting with and I don’t mean this as an attack by any means.

You once wrote here the following:

"It would take an act of Congress to get me to do another turn around project and the reason has nothing to do with the physical nature of the property. These things are brutal and not the reason I went into the business. If something is keeping you from achieving your real goals, it’s simply not worth it no matter how much money it makes.

The single biggest reason I would not do another turn around park is because of the people who live in such places. Many of them are scum and have no redeeming social value whatsoever. That is my opinion after dealing with these types for the last 2 years and I don’t care if that bothers you PC types. In all my years of renovating and renting SFRs, I never encountered anything like what I have been dealing with. You are going into what sounds like a very rundown rental park so I think you will have your hands full of this class of folk. Is that what you want? It’s not what I want.

Need a quick example? For the last 2 months I have had to carry a .32 in my back pocket plus pepper spray at all times. I circle my home every night and shine a spotlight into the bushes before getting out of my truck. Long story and I won’t go into details. Now the problem is solved and the resident in questions now works, quite happily, for me. Yes, I developed skills I didn’t know I had and everything worked out OK in the end but why? I don’t need this and the end result was not worth the hassle.

I would go into this business again but I won’t do another park such as what I now own. There are many, many types of “turn around” situations that don’t involve dealing with people who never should have been born. Keep searching, find those types of deals, educate yourself and then have the guts to act when the right park comes along.


Wheat Hill "

I have to wonder if there isn’t a pattern to this. You have to carry a gun and circle your house for fear of your tenants? You call them “scum” yet they are your client, customer and means of income? When you treat people less than yourself they pick up on that real quickly and I would image this to be some of the reason you live in fear of your tenants to the point that you arm yourself against them.

I have taken well over a hundred people from these sites to see my parks and my parks are small, true/blue trailer parks with few frills if any. I have never treated people like they are “scum” even if I may have felt they deserved it for trashing my place etc.

I carried a gun for 11 years as a police officer but have never carried one since. If you are having to arm yourself against your tenants, imagine how the other tenants must feel living in a place you are so uncomfortable with.

You recently mentioned how, as a teacher you demanded very high levels from students. While this can be admirable it can also be read as arrogance towards the (lesser) students who are a captive audience and subject to both good or bad treatment with little recourse. I am sure you departed a great deal to them and no doubt some of them thank you for it but if you look at how you treated them and your tenants would you have wanted your family treated like this?

As I recall you were going to give a talk at Greg’s meeting of the minds (MOM) and even wrote here to request someone film you. As I recall you did not show up at his event.

Can you see how this appears to others here? Am I not able to show you other view from the other side of the table? You are often so insistent that your view be considered can we not ask the same of you?

We are not your tenants or your students. We all come to sites like these to learn and to give. You have written about how much you have learned but your “giving” seems rather bitter. Rather than complain about esoteric postings why not “give” information instead. You can start a string on topics you have questions on or think others might.

Just showing up to complain… can you also see how that might be viewed from the other side of the table?

I will apologize in advance if your feelings are hurt by this post as this was not my intent. My hope is that we can help you see how things appear to others and perhaps you might not have to carry a gun and circle your house before entering it anymore.

Tony Colella

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to help you save $20 or so if you are considering purchasing one of these timers.

If you are comfortable buying items online, checkout Ebay. I just purchased one for my personal home for $25 less than Home Depot offered and, yes, it’s brand new.

I am going to watch for the average amount saved over the next 2-3 months and then possibly purchase more for rentals.

Happy Holidays everyone!