03 Aug Using Less Water in the Home
Conserving water doesn’t just help protect the environment; it helps you save on your monthly expenses as well. Here are some tips to conserving water use in your home so that you can enjoy major savings on your water bill.
Use the water you usually waste.
There are often times when we water water that we could actually put to other uses. When turning on the faucet for some hot water in the kitchen, for example, you might spend some time letting the water flow while it switches to warm. Rather than letting it go down the drain, consider using that water to fill a large container that you’ll later use for watering flowers, mopping your floors, etc.
Turn off the faucet.
Don’t forget to turn off the faucet during those “in-between” times when you’re used to letting the water run. Whether you’re brushing your teeth, washing dishes, or rinsing vegetables, be sure to turn the water off during those times when you’re not actually using the water.
Don’t use the toilet as a trash can.
Some choose to use the toilet as a trash can by throwing wadded up tissues or small bits of debris into the toilet bowl and then flushing. Not only does this put your plumbing at risk, but you’re wasting five to seven gallons of water with each flush.
Put plastic water bottles in your toilet tank.
It’s true—putting up to a half gallon’s worth of plastic water bottles in your toilet tank can save on water usage. To do this, first fill each bottle partially with sand, gravel, or pebbles. Then, add water to fill up each bottle. Finally, lower your bottles into your toilet tank, away from any working mechanisms. The New York Times estimates that a family of five can save 350 gallons of water every month with this method.
Take shorter showers.
This one is a no-brainer, but it’s worth the extra reminder. Shorter showers, of course, mean less water usage. For reference, a four-minute shower uses 20 to 40 gallons of water.
Only wash clothes and dishes on full loads.
Some clothes washers can be adjusted to match load size, and others even automatically adjust water usage by detected load size. The majority of folks, however, should wait until a load of laundry is full enough to sending through the washer. The same is true for your dishwasher.
Check for hidden water leaks.
You can use your water meter to check for this. Take a look at your water meter, and then wait a two-hour period before reading it again. Be sure there is no water usage during that time. If the water meter’s reading is any different after the two-hour period, then there is likely a leak somewhere in your plumbing.