HOW TO SAVE WATER AT HOME: START WITH YOUR PIPES
“Take shorter showers.”
“Turn off the faucet while you brush your teeth.”
“Manually water your garden.”
I have been offered pretty much the same few lines of advice as to how I can conserve water. And while they are all true, these few simple tips and tricks are only the tip of the iceberg.
Home plumbing maintenance is key to ensuring that you optimize the water that you are paying for. The simple reason is that when pipes are faulty, the internal damage may be difficult to detect and you oftentimes won’t notice the waste of water that goes about.
And while they may be small, leaky faucets and pipes can add up. A slow drip can waste 5 gallons per day. That adds up to almost 2,082 gallons per year for that one pipe alone. Why pay for over 2,000 gallons of wasted water when you don’t have to?
The process for proper pipe maintenance is relatively simple and straightforward. And when you get the hang of it, you’ll be a pro in no time.
Signs That Your Pipes May Be Leaky
The easiest first step is to check the water supply usage when the system is off. Stop the water tap flowing inside your house and check the water meter. Given that your tap is off, you should expect to see a drastic decrease (to zero) in your water meter. If that’s not the case, you have some work to do.
So what’s next? You should check your house if your system reports a leak. Another good test to employ is to turn off the water in your house and walk around. If you hear noises that sound like water dripping, you may need to look into DIY faucet repairs or call a plumber.
Home Water Conservation Tips
While not necessarily related to pipes, the best thing you can do to save water at home is to ensure that the appliances and water-reliant products in your home are optimizing the use of water. And this basically boils down to ensuring you have up-to-date products. And not only that, you should consider proper maintenance of the products as suggested when purchased. While we personally recommend investing in high-efficiency products, you should work in whatever budget constraints you have and purchase the product right for your home.
Toilets. Dual-flush toilets are highly recommended as their process to flush away liquids and solids is different from that of regular toilets. The design of the dual-flush toilet removes some processes from the traditional toilet that would otherwise waste water. Compared to the traditional toilet, you can expect to save 68% on water waste. Alternatively, you could invest in a low flush toilet as an alternative that uses 1.28 gallons per flush against the traditional 3+ gallons per flush.
Water Showers. Modifying the shower head attached to your shower can drastically reduce the water you use. Low-flow shower heads are federally regulated to require the use of 2.5 gallons of water or less per minute. There are many, however, that operate at 1.5 gallons of water per minute or less. They are able to still provide the same (if not better experience) by adding pressure to the water. If interested, you’ll be able to find plenty on Amazon; however, you can find some at Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, and more. Some good options are cheap and some great options are even cheaper. Do your research to figure out which is best for you.
Dishwashers. There is some debate between whether you should hand wash or dish wash. At least there was back when dishwashers weren’t being efficient with their water use. Nowadays, energy efficient dishwashers optimize water use so that you’re only using 3 gallons of water per load. Compared to the average use of 3-5 gallons of water per minute through hand-washing, you’ll notice a huge difference. Your wallet will too. Up-to-date dishwashing machines are ideal for water conservation at home.
Washer System. Just like all the times before it, updating to energy-efficient washer machines is one of the best ways to conserve water at home. The washer can save on both electricity and water. If looking for water-saving washer machines, consider front-loaders or high-efficiency (HE) top-loaders. They can be costly so consider what you can do within your budget before pursuing the ideal option for you.