7 Best Hot Water Recirculating Pumps to Preheat Your Pipes

Ever thought about why your hot water faucet shoots out cold water before it turns warm? Or why you have to wait a few minutes after turning your water on before you can hop in the shower? It’s most likely because you don’t have a hot water recirculating pump.

Waiting for hot water can be inconvenient, but a recirculating pump can eliminate the delay. However, finding the right pump for your home or apartment can feel overwhelming with so many choices on the market.

Most brands will make a lot of promises, but not every pump is durable or efficient. Luckily, we’ve already handled most of the hard work for you—here’s a list of the best hot water recirculating pumps out there:

1. Best Value: Grundfos Brute 9H Recirculating Pump

While recirculating pumps can save you plenty of money over time, they can also cost hundreds of dollars off the bat. The good news is that price doesn’t always correlate to quality. The Grundfos Brute 9H Recirculating Pump offers many of the same benefits of other products at a great value.

As a cast iron circulator pump, this product works well with baseboards, radiant heating, and even fan coils. To make sure that it has a longer lifespan, there are also specific features that help protect the built-in motor as well. Unlike some choices, it’s unlikely that the Grundfos pump is going to stop working or begin to malfunction after a few months.

Not everyone considers noise, but some recirculating pumps can be loud and distracting, especially during the installation process. With its “whisper” operation, the manufacturer has made sure that this pump works quietly and doesn’t distract owners.

Keep in mind that while some pumps might require batteries to operate, this one does not. Buyers shouldn’t need to purchase special batteries for any reason.

Pros:

  • Lightweight at less than seven pounds
  • Higher voltage
  • Easy installation
  • Doesn’t require a lot of regular maintenance

Cons:

  • No built-in timer function
  • No speed adjustment

2. Best Durable Option: Laing Low Flow Recirculating Pump

Although some pumps might require high amounts of wattage to operate correctly, that isn’t the case with the Laing Low Flow Recirculating Pump. Not only does it work with only 33 watts of power, but the manufacturer has designed this product to last as long as possible.

Some owners might worry about their hot water pumps making their pipes erode over time. While this can be a concern sometimes, this product takes specific measures to combat erosion in the piping. Since it has a low flow as well as minimal flow velocities, this pump is gentler on your pipe system.

Another perk is that it’s also quieter. Rather than having to listen to the pump every time you turn on the faucet or take a shower, this choice causes less vibration in the pipe system. Even if there is some noise, it probably won’t be as loud or distracting as some other options.

Pros:

  • Weighs less than three pounds
  • Quiet
  • Doesn’t require a lot of power to operate
  • Has a warranty for defects within the pump

Cons:

  • No built-in timer
  • Less user-friendly

3. Best Overall: Watts Premier Instant Hot Water Recirculating Pump

Features can vary from product to product, but one thing that many owners appreciate in their pump is a built-in timer. Rather than having the pump work all the time, you can program the timer to fit your routine and provide hot water when you need it.

Not only does the Watts Premier Instant Hot Water Recirculating Pump include this feature, but it’s also a 24-hour programmable timer as well. Buyers can set the timer for any time they want.

Installation is another potential benefit of this pump. Even if you’re hiring a professional to install the pump into your pipe system for you, the process can take hours, and end up costing you a lot of money in the meantime.

With its user-friendly design, installation should take less than an hour with this product—which is good news for people hiring professionals or trying to put the pump in themselves.

Keep in mind that this pump does come with a few more extras. There are two adapters with rubber washers, a sensor valve, two twelve-inch supply lines, and valve mounting screws.

Pros:

  • Includes a timer
  • Easy to install
  • Fairly quiet
  • Saves up to 15,000 gallons of water per year

Cons:

  • You can’t use it with tankless water heaters
  • Might not be as durable as some other choices

4. Best Eco-Friendly Option: BOKYWOX Hot Water Circulation Pump

Most people would assume that recirculating pumps are already eco-friendly since they conserve water, but that isn’t always the case. Your pump might be easy on your water bill, but rough on the environment. Luckily, that’s not an issue with the BOKYWOX Hot Water Circulation Pump.

While it isn’t suitable for potable water, buyers can use it directly in their drinking water pipelines. After you initially install it, your water might taste “oily” for the first couple of uses, but this aftertaste should fade fairly quickly.

Unlike some pumps, which might have issues with the leaking, the manufacturer has designed this product in a way that helps reduce the risk of potential leakage. The design also helps resist damage that might occur at high temperatures as well as anti-fraying.

Pros:

  • Doesn’t require batteries for operation
  • Doesn’t produce tons of noise
  • Environmentally-friendly
  • Easy to install

Cons:

  • Not suitable for potable water
  • Can make your water taste “oily” at first

5. Best Time-Saving Option: Bell & Gossett Hot Water Circulator Pump

It’s not unusual for some of the best hot water recirculating pumps to feel as if they’re complicated to operate. Some buyers might experience confusion when it comes time to use the pump, set the timer, or use one of the other features.

For anyone that’s looking for a pump that will save time and lacks the bells-and-whistles, the Bell & Gossett Hot Water Circulator Pump might be the right choice.

Not only should the installation process feel quick and breezy, but this product might not need all the regular maintenance that other options do. Homeowners might purchase a pump, but not realize that they’ll need to clean it every few months to keep it in working condition.

You might still need to clean it every once and a while, but the Bell & Gossett pump shouldn’t require any time-consuming maintenance.

It’s worth noting that this product comes with the pump itself as well as rubber gaskets that the owners will likely need for the installation.

Pros:

  • Durable
  • Doesn’t require a lot of maintenance
  • Includes rubber gaskets
  • Simple installation

Cons:

  • Buyers must purchase the flanges separately
  • Not as lightweight

6. Best Versatile Option: Taco 007 Cast Iron Circulator Pump

One of the trickiest parts of purchasing a pump is finding a product that will work with your hot water system. Some pumps won’t operate with tankless heaters, potable water, or domestic water.

Fortunately, the Taco 007 Cast Iron Circulator Pump is a versatile product that fits most systems. From hydronic heating, radiant heating, indirect water heaters, and even hydro-air fan coils, this pump works well.

It also includes a set of universal flange gaskets, so there’s no need for buyers to try and hunt down a set that fits. As a cast-iron pump, this product might also be a little quieter than some other choices when you’re operating it.

The replaceable cartridge on this pump also makes it a money-saver. Instead of having to replace the entire pump when the cartridge stops working, all buyers need to do is replace the cartridge.

Pros:

  • Comes with a set of universal flange gaskets and a wire gland
  • Versatile
  • Easy to service and maintenance
  • Less noisy

Cons:

  • Not as effortless to install
  • No timer

7. Best User-Friendly Choice: Grundfos TLC Comfort Hot Water Recirculation Pump

Not all of the best hot water recirculating pumps are user-friendly. Some of them can take hours to install, require regular maintenance or service from a professional, and even feel impossible to operate on a day-to-day basis. If there’s one benefit to the Grundfos TLC Comfort Hot Water Recirculation Pump, it’s user-friendly.

This is a great option for those who already have a Grundfos pump, but need a replacement. However, even buyers who don’t own a recirculating pump can get a lot of use out of this product.

With low-energy consumption, this pump is also unlikely to drive up your energy bill over time. In comparison to other choices, it might even save buyers some money. At almost seven pounds, this pump isn’t the most lightweight option out there, but it’s not so heavy that it becomes difficult to operate either.

If you want to adjust the settings or change the time on the pump, there is a digital timer that allows you to do so.

Pros:

  • Has a timer
  • Low-energy consumption
  • Easy to operate
  • Doesn’t require tons of regular maintenance

Cons:

  • Might not work with every heating system
  • Not as lightweight
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