You can get the biggest water savings in your home by checking for leaks and by installing high efficiency fixtures. Many homes waste (and pay for) thousands of gallons of water each year because they do not fix leaks that can easily be repaired. In addition to saving money on your water bill using water efficiently can also save you money on your energy bill, it takes less energy to heat less water.
Below are some ideas to try:
- Turn off the water while you are brushing your teeth or washing your face - Letting your faucet run for 5 minutes uses about as much energy as letting a 60-watt light bulb run for 14 hours
- Install an aerator on every faucet in the house - they are very inexpensive and easy to install
- Look for WaterSense labeled products to save the most water. You can let these products do the saving for you. They are certified to use 20% less water while still meeting strict performance criteria. These products can be found in local stores, just look for the WaterSense logo. For more information go to: www.epa.gov/watersense
Toilets - Older models use 3.6 gallons per flush, newer models use 1.6 gallons per flush and high efficiency models use 1.0 to 1.28 gallons per flush. Installing a new toilet can save at least 2 gallons of water every time the toilet is flushed.
- Do not dispose of tissues or other garbage in the toilet - use the garbage can
Shower Heads - Most newer shower heads deliver 2.5 gallons per minute, efficient models deliver less than 2.0 gallons per minute, while older fixtures can deliver as high as 5.0 gallons per minute.
- Showering accounts for nearly 17% of residential indoor water use, or about 30 gallons per household per day. To save water either take a shorter shower or install a water efficient showerhead.
Bathroom Faucet - If your bathroom faucet flows more than 2.2 gallons per minute either install a low-flow aerator on the faucet or replace the faucet with one that uses 1.5 gallons per minute or less.
- A faucet leaking at 10 drips per minute can waste up to 500 gallons in a year.
Washing Machine - The next time you purchase a washing machine consider a water efficient model that uses around 18 gallons per load. Older models can use as much as 40 gallons per load.
- If your washing machine has a volume selector, select the minimum amount required per load.
Dish Washer - A standard sized dishwasher should use 6.5 gallons per cycle or less for water efficiency. Older models can use up to 11 gallons per cycle.
- Only run your dishwasher when it is full.