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15 Ways to Reduce Water Bill
Your water bill isn't typically going to be your most expensive utility bill, but it is a bill that you can try to lower.
The first things that may come to mind may include:
- Replace water heater with a newer energy efficient model or get a tankless water heater
- Take shorter showers
- Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth or shaving
- Wash your car less or use a car wash
- Take more showers and fewer baths
- Flush the toilet less often - if it's yellow, let it mellow
But, there are options to consider in order to save more water by using water more efficiently.
1. Fix Leaks. This may sound obvious, but you may not realize where there is a leak, especially if you aren't seeing a drip or the leak isn't making a sound. To cover the basis, you should replace the washers in sink faucets every few years, especially if you live in an older home. A leaky faucet can waste 1,000-2,000 gallons of water a year according to the National Sanitation Foundation.
2. Insulate Water Pipes. Your local hardware store sells pre-cut foam piping that tapes to your water pipes. This will help heat your water faster so that you won't lose as much water waiting for it to heat.
3. Buy Bottled Water. Instead of drinking tap water, buy cases or jugs of spring water and leave in your fridge. Shop the sales papers to get the best deal, and you'll actually save money buying bottles of water.
4. Use a Dishwasher. Believe it or not, using your dishwasher can save you money and water. It takes less water to run a full load of dishes than it does to hand wash.
5. Don't Use the Disposal. Although convenient to clean out the scraps in the sink, the garbage disposal uses water. Plus, disposals are actually not recommended by many plumbers. Instead, compost the scraps or just throw them away.
6. Heat Water on the Stove or in the Microwave. Instead of running the hot water faucet until it heats up, boil water on the stove. For smaller amounts, boil the water in the microwave. Just be careful not to heat it too much that you spill it and burn yourself.
7. Install a Faucet Aerator. You can purchase a faucet aerator at your local home improvement store. It screws into the bottom of your faucet to reduce water flow without reducing water pressure. If you have a newer faucet, it may already have one built in.
8. Wash Laundry in Cold Water. Instead of using hot water to wash your laundry, cold water will clean just the same. Cold water will even preserve your colors better, and it will save water and energy. Also, make sure to wash full loads to save water and wear-and-tear on your machine.
9. Flush with Less Water. Replace your toilet with a low pressure toilet... If this isn't an option, you can trick your toilet into using less water. Fill two water bottles with an inch or two of sand or gravel and put them in the toilet tank. This will raise the water in the tank and trick it into using less per flush. You can save an additional 1/2 gallon of water by installing a fill cycle diverter to divert overflow water back into the tank during the fill cycle.
10. Check the Toilet Flapper. The toilet flapper breaks down quickly, so you want to replace it once a year. When replacing the flapper, consider using an adjustable flapper so you can set your desired flush volume. According to the Niagara Conservation, an adjustable toilet flapper can save you up to three gallons per flush.
11. Install a Low-Flow Shower Head. Low-flow shower heads typically use about 2.5 gallons of water per minute (GPM). Older shower heads use as much as 5.5 gallons per minute. Replacing all of your shower heads can save you about 25-60% of water according to the US Department of Energy.
12. Install a Point-of-Use Hot Water Heater. If you regularly need hot water for hot drinks, washing dishes, etc., install a point-of-use hot water heater (also known as an instant hot water system) under the sink. It will supply you with hot water instantly without having to wait for it to heat up. These cost a few hundred dollars, but in the long run, it'll pay for itself.
13. Install a Hot Water Recirculation System. For a few hundred dollars, the recirculation system will pull hot water from the hot water heater faster and return cool water from the pipes to the water heating for reheating.
14. Collect Rain Water. Attach rain barrels to the end of your gutters drain spouts to collect rain water. Use it to water your plants and to even wash your car with.
15. Water with a Soaker Hose. Use a soaker hose to water the plants in your yard. You'll have control of where the water goes and where it doesn't so that you don't waste water. Make sure to water for longer fewer times a week.Light layers of water just evaporates, so a deep soak is more efficient watering the lawn and saving water.