Ways to Reduce Water Consumption
We all know that perhaps the best way to save on your water bill is to use less water, but do we know how beneficial that can be? According to Houselogic, a family of four that showers five minutes a day, will on average consume 700 gallons of water each week which is the equivalent of a three year supply of drinking water for one person. Cheryl Weiss, resident freelance reporter and former Communication Commissioner, graciously shared tips that would assist residents in water savings through lowered water consumption.
In the Kitchen
- Do you think washing dishes by hand saves water? It doesn’t! Use your dishwasher, but only run it when it’s full. Cost: FREE
- Stop pre-washing your dishes! It’s not necessary. Cost: FREE
- If you do not have an aerator on your faucets, install them. This reduces water flow without reducing the water pressure, which saves water. Cost: $5-10
- Instead of filling a glass with water every time you drink, keep a pitcher of water in the refrigerator. Cost: FREE
- If you need hot water, consider heating a container of water in the microwave or heat a pot of water on the stove instead of running the water from the tap and waiting for it to warm. Cost: FREE
- Do you use a lot of hot water? You might want to install a point-of-use hot water heater. This instant hot water system provides hot water as soon as you turn on the tap. Cost: approximately $150-200
- Stop using the disposal. Compost food waste instead. Cost: FREE
- Reuse water! Water your plants with unused drinking and cooking water. Cost: FREE
In the Bathroom
- Install a low-flow shower head. This saves you three gallons of water per minute. You can reduce your water bill 25-60%. Low-flow fixtures can save a family of four 14,000 gallons of water per year. Cost: $7-100
- Limit your shower to five minutes. The shorter the shower, the less water used. Cost: FREE
- Take more showers, take fewer baths. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average bathtub holds 35 gallons of water. If you take a five-minute shower, you will only use 12.5 gallons of water with a low-flow shower head saving 22.5 gallons of water! Cost: FREE
- Check for leaks in your bathtub and sink faucets. Cost: FREE • When you brush your teeth or shave, turn off the water. Cost: FREE
- You don’t think your toilet has a leak? It might! Get a dye tablet at the hardware store and drop it in the toilet tank. If you see dye in the toilet bowl, there is a leak to repair. Cost: $0-5 for the dye tablet.
- Replace your toilet flapper with an adjustable flapper. Adjustable flappers can save up to three gallons each flush. Cost: $5-20
- Put a bottle of water in the toilet tank. It will cause the tank to fill with less water. The larger the bottle, the more money you save. Cost: FREE
- Place a fill cycle diverter in your toilet to save one-half gallon per flush. Cost: $1
- If it’s time to replace your toilet, get a low-flow toilet that can save up to two gallons per flush. Cost: $130-350
In the Laundry Room
- How many times do you wear your jeans or sweatshirt before you wash it? Save water, save time, and save on laundry supplies by wearing outer clothes more than once! Cost: FREE
- If it’s time for a new washer, consider purchasing a high-efficiency washer. It uses less water, and will save you money in the long run. Cost: $275-1,000
In the Basement
- If you have not insulated your hot water pipes, this is a great way to get warmer water faster. Cost: varies
- Insulating your hot water tank can cut heat loss by 25% - 45% and save 4% - 9% according the Houselogic. Cost $20.
- Water your garden and wash your car with rainwater collected in a rain barrel. Cost: $30-100
- To cool off use wading pools instead of sprinklers. Cost: $20
- Take your car to the car wash instead of washing at home. Cost: $3-20
Thank you, Cheryl Weiss for this information!