With the state of California, as well as a few others, experiencing extreme drought conditions this year, it is a good time for everyone to take a look at how they are using – and possibly wasting- water at home. After the popularity of the Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS this summer, it seems like we are wasting more water than ever, which is true even for the people who are living in the areas that are experiencing the drought. So, with that in mind, let’s think about some of the ways that we can change how we are using water at home so that we end up using less of this precious resource in our normal day to day activities.
Bathroom Water Saving Tips
Your bathroom is probably one of the areas of your home where the most water is wasted. Often, this is the result of leaks that you might not normally notice or care about. For instance, does your bathroom sink drip a little or does your toilet run for longer than it should when you flush? Or maybe your toilet runs water by itself during the day? Looking for and fixing these leaks can save not only a lot of water but also some money on your water bill.
Now look to your shower. Yes, we all like those long, hot showers but they are very wasteful. So, get yourself a low-flow shower head and either a timer for it or strictly limit shower times so that they are short except for every so often when you just need a long shower.
If your toilets are old, then upgrade them to a model that has better efficiency so that it takes less water to flush each time. This is a super easy way to conserve water at home.
Kitchen Water Saving Tips
After bathrooms, the kitchen is probably the next place where the most water is wasted.
If you have a dishwasher, then use it for your dishes instead of hand washing them. Why? Because the dishwasher is more efficient and therefore requires less water than hand washing. And if your dishwasher is an older model, upgrade it to one that offers high efficiency.
When you want to run the dishwasher, only do so when the appliance is full. Otherwise, you are just wasting water!
On your kitchen sink, put a low-flow faucet aerator to cut your water usage in half! This is a very cheap and easy way so conserve water in your kitchen.
Other Home Water Saving Tips
Like with the dishwasher, only do your laundry when you have enough for a full load in the washing machine. And, if your washer is an older model, then consider upgrade it to a more efficient one that uses less water when in use.
If you have not already done so, insulate your hot water pipes to keep them warm. This reduces the time that you spend with the tap on waiting for the water to warm up ( and wasting water since it is not warm initially). This is also a cheap fix that saves on water.
And if you are building a new home, you can place the hot water heater closer to showers, the washing machine and dishwasher to shorten the distance that the hot water has to travel, which keeps it warmer for you.