Things You Can Do To Conserve Water
The EPA estimates that we use 80-100 gallons of water every day – per person. The average family uses around 300 gallons a day. A faucet leaking 10 drips every minute wastes 526 gallons of water per year, adding up to $10.91. Clearly, a running toilet can waste much more than that. The average leaky toilet can waste about 200 gallons of water per day. That’s over 6,000 gallons a month and will increase your bill up to $70 or more by itself.
Inefficient appliances and plumbing problems waste the most water. You can conserve an amazing amount of water by investing in products and changing habits. There are now water-efficient shower heads, taps, toilets, washing machines, and dishwashers too.
Fix a Dripping Tap and Never Leave the Tap Running
Never let a faucet run needlessly while washing and rinsing dishes or brushing your teeth is an excellent habit to develop. Bathroom faucets run at about 2 gallons of water per minute. You can save hundreds of gallons a month with just better habits.
Even slow drips can waste as much as 20 gallons a day. Any constantly running water source will add up and should be fixed.
Clothes washing accounts for more than 20 percent of residential indoor water use. We do about 300 loads of laundry each year. Always use full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher.
Front-loading machines use less water than top-loading machines. Look for Energy-Star certified machines, the general use about 40 percent less water than regular washers. The trick is that they don’t fill up the tub. Instead, they flip the clothing and it is spun through streams of water and high-pressure spray.
The bathroom uses the most water in the house. 30 percent of water usage in the home is from toilets alone. Older toilets can use as much as 6 gallons per flush. There is a certification to look for with replacement toilets. Like appliances labeled Energy-Star certified, EPA WaterSense certified toilets use just 1.28-1.6 gallons per flush. Dual-flush toilets use even less.
Shorten Your Showers and Install Efficient Shower Heads
Another huge use of water is showering – up to 40 gallons a day for the average family of 4. There are also WaterSense-certified shower heads and they use 2 gallons or less a minute. They give the same performance as a regular shower head.
Timing your showers can also drastically conserve water. Aim for 5-minute showers for a good time frame to keep water usage down.
Outside the home, watering our yards and gardens is where the most water is used. More than half of that outdoor water goes to waste due to evaporation, runoff, or overwatering.
Residential landscape irrigation has come a long way. Smart controllers adjust to real weather conditions and can alert you to water leaks. Replacing old mist-style sprinkler heads with rotator heads which shoot jets at a slow rate and are more efficient is another way to cut down on waste.
For the garden, Drip irrigation piping and soaker hoses offer great watering efficiency. Capturing rainwater in 55-gallon drums attached to gutters and downspouts is another easy way to be environmentally friendly with your water usage. Just remember to keep the barrels covered to cut down on mosquitoes!
Contact Total Plumbing today to install new, efficient appliances and faucets!