Tuesday, August 27, 2013

17 Tips For Reducing Water Consumption

Water has become a valuable commodity and it is becoming more and more valuable every day. Water is one of the few resources we literally cannot live without for more than a day or two. Today, drinkable water is becoming scarce even in areas that have never had shortages before. There is only so much to go around, and as the population of our planet increases, we have to keep an eye on the responsible use of this most valuable resource.  To protect our environment and to save money, take a look at these easy water conservation tips. 

Česky: Pitná voda - kohoutek Español: Agua potable
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
1. Turn off the faucet.  It nay sound simplistic, but the easiest way to cut down on water consumption for your household is to not let the faucet run.  Whether you’re washing dishes or you’re brushing your teeth, turning off the faucet conserves gallons of water each day.

2. Choose xeriscape materials in your landscaping.  Xeriscape plants can grow well even in desert-like conditions, and don’t need much water to thrive.  Plants like Thyme, lavender, rosemary, and others can grow quite beautifully on very little moisture.

3. Water your lawn and garden in the morning or evening when temperatures are cooler to minimize evaporation.  This is actually better for your lawn and garden too.

4. Trim your shower time by a minute or two and you can save up to 150 gallons each month

5. Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting. Longer grass shades roots and retains soil moisture better than if it is closely clipped.  Again, this is better for your grass and motivates the roots to grow deep making it hardy and thick, and it will need less frequent watering.

6. Use a rain barrel to collect water and then use this water to water your garden or lawn.

7. Use an automatic sprinkler system that’s easy to turn off and on.  That way you can turn it off if it’s raining or install a rain sensor so your system won't run when it's raining. (I cannot tell you how many times I have seen sprinklers running when it is pouring rain, or has just rained hours ago!)

8. Check your toilet for leaks and fix them or replace your toilet with a low flush toilet.

9. Use a water efficient showerhead and put aerators on all your faucets. I love my showerhead! It's one of the most efficient ones around, and the adjustable head provides great water pressure even when I only turn on the water part-way.

10. Only wash your clothes or dishes when you have a full load.

11. Visit only car washes that use recycled water. Or wash it at home yourself using one of the "waterless" washes available.

12. Use your extra water from cooking or water from pet bowls to water plants. I keep a watering can in the corner of my kitchen, to make it easy to collect excess water. Then I can use it to water the plants later.

13. Avoid flushing the toilet unless it’s necessary.  Don't use it as a garbage can where you toss tissues, cotton swabs and other items. 

14. Wash dishes by hand. But do it in a sink partially filled with water, instead of running the faucet the whole time.

Dripping faucet 2
Dripping faucet. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
15. If you have a dishwasher, don’t wash your dishes before you put them in the washer and rinse them minimally.

16. Fix all leaky faucets.  Experts estimate we lose about 2700 gallons of water each year from leaky faucets. Plus they're just annoying!

17. Insulate your pipes so you don’t have to run the water as long to reach your desired temperature. Or get one of the new water-saving pipe flush devices that flushes the cool water in the pipes back into the tank so the water you get is hot right away.

Conserving water is not only an environmentally sound idea, it also saves you money.  As water becomes more and more scarce and our resources diminish the cost of water will continue to rise.  Practice and instill good water conservation habits now and reap the benefits for years to come - and protect our resources for future generations.

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