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People often ask me if it is better, when boiling water, to start with hot water from the faucet first. This is definitely a practice that should NOT be done. If you want to boil water on the stove, start with cold water from the faucet. Also always cover a pot when boiling water. This will reduce the time to boiling and save a lot of energy.
The reason that you should not start with hot water is that a lot of heat is wasted just getting the hot water to a faucet. As the water starts through the pipe, the pipe draws all the heat from the water until the pipe warms up. This is why the first water to come out is cold and stays cool for a while. You will easily use twice as much energy from the hot water in the pipes than you will save on the stove.
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