How to Save Water in Your Home in 5 Steps
If you’re a fan of our blog, you’ve already learned a variety of ways to clean and purify the water in your home using WAVE water purifiers. But even once you’ve ensured that your family is able to enjoy only the freshest and safest water, you’ll still need to deal with a big issue that plagues most households: water waste. It’s no surprise that water shortages are a fact of life in many areas around the world. The entire state of California has been in drought conditions for years, and the same is true for most arid and semi-arid regions. Even worse, you can expect more of those droughts thanks to climate change, which could eventually lead to water shortages in your neck of the woods even if it's not an issue now. While you may not face an imminent water shortage right now, you could still be needlessly wasting money by not saving water. Here are five ways you can start saving water today.
Fix Leaky Pipes and Faucets
Take a look at your kitchen sink: Is it dripping? If so, you have a problem. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, a faucet that drips just one drop every second or so can waste more than 3,000 gallons every year! Plus, if you have a dripping faucet, chances are there are other leaks in the house that you can’t see. All those tiny leaks in a home may add up to 10,000 gallons of wasted water each year. Even beyond the waste, that water can accumulate in your home and lead to musty basements with smells that are difficult to remove, damp attics and moisture damage in your walls. Don’t be complacent about those drips. Instead, get someone to fix them as soon as possible, and then you can contract an experienced plumber to examine every pipe in your home for other potential drips as well.
Use Dishwashers and Washing Machines Responsibly
The Alliance for Water Efficiency found that a conventional washing machine uses about 40 gallons of water to wash one load of clothes, and a conventional dishwasher uses about 15 gallons for a load of dishes. Together that's nearly 6,000 gallons of water each year just for dishes and laundry, assuming you run loads every three days. However, the math quickly gets worse if you’ve formed the habit of running partial loads even when the washing machine or dishwasher isn’t full. By running the machines more often to compensate, you could easily double or even triple your water usage while washing fewer items! To avoid the waste, make sure that you only run your washing machine and dishwasher when they have full loads. If you find that difficult to do, consider buying a smaller machine or use an energy-efficient model instead.
Install a Water Meter
The only way to keep a truly accurate eye on your water usage is to install a home water meter. Instead of waiting for the utility bill to arrive every month and being surprised by your water waste, a water meter lets you monitor your usage throughout the month. The added awareness from the meter helps you form good habits and alerts you to an unseen leak if your water meter shows a spike in usage without any change in your daily routine. Make the most of your meter by setting up a monthly "audit" of your water usage. If it's higher than normal, start a daily audit by keeping track of your water usage every day to get a clear record of how you're using water. Then you can identify problems that you didn't know about, like which family member takes hour-long showers on the weekends.
Invest in Water-Efficient Appliances
Washing machines and dishwashers aren’t the only appliances in your home that can waste water. Indeed, every single appliance or device in your home that uses water might lead to unnecessary costs if it’s old and inefficient. Water-efficient washing machines and dishwashers can use less than half the amount of water that conventional appliances do. Replacing your shower heads, faucets, toilets, lawn sprinklers or any old water-guzzling apparatus with an efficient, modern model is always a good idea.
Take Shorter Showers and Limit Baths
There’s nothing like relaxing at the end of a stressful day in your warm, luxurious bath, but did you know that your bath uses nearly four times as much water as a shower? While the average eight-minute shower uses around 17 gallons of water, a single bath uses more than 70 gallons! Keep your bath time to a minimum and opt for a shower instead. If you absolutely must have regular soaks, consider installing a water-efficient Jacuzzi tub that can use air jets and other hot-tub tricks to make it seem like the tub is more full than it is. You'll still get a satisfying end to your day, and your water bill won't skyrocket either. By taking these simple steps, you can save water, “future proof” your home for drought conditions, prevent mold and stop wasting money on the water bill every month.