Is Water Conservation Really That Important? | Summer Heat Wave

With the heat wave we are feeling, water conservation is very important. Especially if you are on a well.

Here are some excellent tips from Home Water Works, a project of the Alliance for Water Efficiency. Please check out their link below.

Laundry

When doing laundry, always wash full loads.
Conventional washers built before 2011 typically use about 40 gallons per load; resource-efficient washer may use as little as 15 gallons per load.
Adjust the water level in the washer to the amount needed for the load.  Some of the new efficient washers will do this automatically.
When it’s time to replace the clothes washer, choose a high-efficiency washer with a low water factor.
The smaller the water factor, the more efficient the clothes washer. 

Dishwashing

If washing dishes by hand, fill the sink with water rather than continually running the tap.
Install an efficient dishwasher.
Technological advances in dishwashers make it possible to use less water to achieve the same goal.  Selecting a new dishwasher that uses less water per cycle will reduce household water use.
Only wash full loads of dishes in the dishwasher.

Faucets

Find and fix any leaky faucets.
A faucet leaking 60 drops per minute will waste 192 gallons per month. That is equal to 2,304 gallons per year.
Install efficient faucets and/or faucet aerators.
Turn off the faucet. When lathering hands, shaving, or brushing teeth.

Landscaping

Keep soil healthy and add mulch to prevent water loss through evaporation.
If watering with a hose, make sure it has a shut-off nozzle.
Water in the morning to prevent water loss due to evaporation.  Avoid watering when it is windy.
Use a rain barrel to collect water for use in the landscape.
Add a graywater system to collect water from your washing machine or shower and bath, and use it in the landscape.

Showers

If it takes a long time for the hot water to reach the shower, use it as an opportunity to collect water for other uses, such as watering houseplants.
Replace showerheads that have a flow rate greater than 2.5 gallons per minute.
If the showerhead is not labeled, the flow rate can be checked by catching the water in a 1-gallon bucket.  If it takes less than 24 seconds to fill up, the showerhead flow rate is more than 2.5 gallons per minute.  The U.S. EPA WaterSense program labels efficient showerheads that use a maximum 2.0 gallons per minute.
For more information and resources, visit the AWE Residential Shower Introduction Page.
Take shorter showers.
Reducing a 10-minute shower to 5 minutes will save 12.5 gallons of water if the showerhead has a flow rate of 2.5 gallons per minute (even more if the showerhead has a higher flow rate).

Toilets

Replace toilets installed before 1994 (1992 for Texas and California) with High-Efficiency Toilets (HETs).
Replacing an older toilet that uses 3.50 gallons per flush (gpf) with a HET that uses 1.28 gpf will save 2.22 gpf.  The EPA WaterSense program labels efficient toilets that use a maximum 1.28 gpf. 
If the toilet is flushed an average of six times each day it will save 13 gallons per day or 4,745 gallons per year.  Some older toilets may use as much as 7 gallons per flush. 
Check toilets to verify they are working properly.
Make sure the water level is not too high, the fill valve is working properly, and the flapper is not leaking. A running toilet can waste hundreds of gallons of water per day.
For more information on checking a toilet, visit the H2Ouse Water Saver Home Toilet Page.

Other

Check water bills for any instances of high water use, as this may be an indication of a leak.
Leaking faucets, leaking toilets, and leaking pipes all have something in common, they waste a lot of water! Your water bill will often show abnormal water consumption if there is a leak. Many water utilities have information on how to read your water bill online.
Composting food wastes saves water by reducing the water needed to run a garbage disposal.
Pool owners can use a cover to reduce water loss through evaporation. A pool cover can also save energy and reduce the need for chemicals.
Sweep outdoor surfaces with a broom instead of using a hose.
Wash vehicles at a carwash that recycles its water. If washing at home, make sure the hose has a shutoff valve.

http://www.home-water-works.org/water-conservation-tips

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