Development of a dynamic analytical model for estimating waste heat from domestic hot water systems

Dashamir Marini*, Richard A. Buswell, Christina J. Hopfe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Domestic Hot Water (DHW) production accounts on average between 14 14% and 30% of the residential energy consumption worldwide. In UK dewllings, a quarter of the energy is consumed to produce hot water and this proportion is likely to increase as the energy required for space heating reduces over time in order to achieve demand reduction targets. As the margins for improving the performance of heating system technologies increase, the need for improving modelling accuracy and precision increases also. Although studies have considered DHW use in buildings, there is a lack of reflection on the energy loss and performance of systems in contemporary dwellings. Current simulation tools with simplified assumptions, limited variables and algorithm detail, might lead to unreliable results in terms of the estimated heat losses. In this research, an analytical dynamic model has been developed to estimate heat loss from a domestic hot water system based on high resolution monitored data for a set of dwellings in the UK. The model estimated heat losses during flowing and non-flowing (cooling down) conditions in the distribution system as well as heat losses from the storage tank. It was found that apart from the significant heat loss from the storage tank, short draw-offs are particularly influential in determining the amount of heat wasted. Considerable savings might be achieved ‘avoiding’ short draw-offs through a better control of the system and/or changes in the user behaviour. Insulating and reducing the effective length of the distribution pipe network through better design of the system similarly predict significant reductions in heat losses.

Original languageEnglish
Article number111119
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2021


  • Domestic Hot Water
  • Dynamic modelling
  • Energy reduction
  • Heat loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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