Water heating can account for 14 percent to 25 percent of the energy consumed in your home, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. If you're not gung-ho enough to take cold showers-I have to confess, I'm a total wimp-consider lowering the thermostat on your water heater by 10°F. Bonus: It can save you between 3 percent to 5 percent in energy costs.
Another benefit of taking a warm shower, instead of a scalding one, reports the February 2008 issue of the Harvard Health Letter, is better-looking skin. Hot water whisks away the water-retentive fatty substances in your skin, leaving it dry-or in serious cases, cracked, which can invite infection and inflammation. If your complexion is starting to look parched, try turning down the thermostat, as well, because hot air is drier than cool air.
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