Often, we don’t think about how much water we use until we don’t have it, or until we get our monthly water bill. If you are looking for ways to cut down on water usage in your home, here are some simple steps you can take.
1. Stay on top of leaks.
Even the smallest faucet drip can add to your water bill. Don’t wait for something visible. Schedule a routine check of all faucets, shower heads, toilets, and appliances.
2. Be sure your toilet isn’t running.
Don’t flush money down the drain. Often, when a toilet is running, you can hear the sound of water continuously rushing into the tank. That might be a flapper that has not closed and you will need to close it.
But sometimes a running toilet is more subtle. Give it a check-over once in a while to be sure there are no signs of continuous water running into the tank or the bowl. Even a little water that continues to run is a sign that something needs to be fixed.
Even if your toilet is working fine, you can save water by making small adjustments. An adjustable toilet flapper valve allows you to control how much water flows into the toilet with each flush.
Adding a fill-cycle diverter also means less money down the drain. Toilet tanks fill more slowly than toilet bowls. As your tank continues to fill, water continues to run down the toilet drain, even after the bowl is filled. A fill-cycle diverter brings that water back into the tank, rather than down the drain.
3. Wash your dishes efficiently.
If you have a dishwasher, you will use less water cleaning your dishes that way than by hand. But you also need an efficient dishwashing strategy. You’ve probably been told: Don’t run a dishwasher until it’s full. This is water-saving advice. It takes just as much water to run a half-empty dishwasher as it takes to run a full dishwasher.
Most dishwashers don’t require pre-washing in the sink. However, if you prefer to pre-wash, consider putting a small amount of water in the sink, with the drain closed, and pre-washing that way. This saves much more water than pre-washing individual dishes under a running faucet.
4. Shower wisely.
You can save water by reducing your shower time. Even cutting your time by just a few minutes can save many gallons of water per year. Because showers use hot water, you will also save on your utility bill by reducing the use of your water heater.
When you turn on the shower, it starts out cold so you let it run to get warm. That’s a lot of water going down the drain. What if you set a bucket under the showerhead to catch that water? You could then use it to water indoor plants, to pre-soak laundry, to clean your bathroom, to wash your car, or to flush toilets during a power outage.
It might also help to install a low-flow shower head. This will reduce your amount of water during shower time. You can also turn the water off while soaping and then turn it back on to rinse. Turning off the bathroom sink faucet will also help when soaping your hands and brushing your teeth.
What are some other ways you can save water and lower your water bill? A plumbing professional can help you find the most cost-efficient solutions for your home.
If you need a plumber in Reno or Sparks, give us a call. We’re always ready to help!