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20 Ways to Conserve Water at Home

20 Ways to Conserve Water at Home

March 22 is World Water Day! Read and share the following tips, and do your part to help reduce our overall water consumption!

With more and more areas struggling with droughts, conserving water is more important than ever. Even if you’re not living in a drought-stricken region, cutting back on water use also means a lower utility bill and helps conserve a precious resource.

Whether you’re ready to cut back on your showers or replace your lawn with water-wise plants, there are lots of big and small ways that you can conserve water around the home. Don’t worry if you can’t do everything on this list. Just pick a few things to start with, and do more as you can. Even a few small changes can add up to hundreds of gallons in water savings each year! Here are 20 water-saving tips to get you going…

1. Shower Bucket. Instead of letting the water pour down the drain, stick a bucket under the faucet while you wait for your shower water to heat up. You can use the water for flushing the toilet or watering your plants.

2.  Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth. Water comes out of the average faucet at 2.5 gallons per minute. Don’t let all that water go down the drain while you brush! Turn off the faucet after you wet your brush, and leave it off until it’s time to rinse.

3. Turn off the tap while washing your hands. Do you need the water to run while you’re scrubbing your hands? Save a few gallons of water and turn the faucet off after you wet your hands until you need to rinse.

4. If it’s yellow, let it mellow. This tip might not be for everyone, but the toilet is one of the most water-intensive fixtures in the house. Do you need to flush every time?

5. Fix your leaks. Whether you go DIY or hire a plumber, fixing leaky faucets can mean big water savings.

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by Gabrielle Rocha

cooking pasta water

Water fact: The average American household uses 400 gallons of water per day!

6. Re-use your pasta cooking liquid. Instead of dumping that water down the drain, try draining your pasta water into a large pot. Once it cools, you can use it to water your plants. Just make sure you wait, because if you dump that boiling water on your plants, you might harm them.

7. Head to the car wash. If you feel compelled to wash your car, take it to a car wash that recycles the water, rather than washing at home with the hose.

8. Cut your showers short. Older shower heads can use as much as 5 gallons of water per minute. Speed things up in the shower for some serious water savings.

9. Choose efficient fixtures. Aerating your faucets, investing in a low-flow toilet, choosing efficient shower heads, and opting for a Water Sense rated dishwasher and washing machine can add up to big water savings.

10. Shrink your lawn. Even better: lose the lawn completely. Instead, opt for a xeriscaped landscape that incorporates water wise ground cover, succulents, and other plants that thrive in drought conditions.

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by naotakem

dishwasherWater fact: One in eight people worldwide does not have access to clean drinking water.

11. Don’t run the dishwasher or washing machine until they’re full. Those half-loads add up to gallons and gallons of wasted water.

12. Keep an eye on your bill to spot leaks. If your water bill spikes suddenly, there’s a good chance that a leak is the culprit. Call in a plumber to check your lines to save water and cash!

13. Install a rain barrel. Rainwater harvesting is a great way to keep your plants hydrated without turning on the hose or sprinkler.

14. Flush with less. Older toilets use a lot of water. You can reduce your usage by sinking a half gallon jug of water in the toilet tank. Do NOT use a brick, because it will break down and the sediment can damage your tank.

15. Water in the early morning. You’ll need less water, since cooler morning temperatures mean losing less water to evaporation. It’s not a great idea to water in the evenings, since this can promote mold growth.

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by David Locke

washing the dog

Water fact: The EPA predicts even more droughts in the future due to climate change. They also predict longer and more severe droughts.

16. Hand-washing a lot of dishes? Fill up your sink with water, instead of letting it run the whole time that you’re scrubbing.

17. Use less electricity. Power plants use thousands of gallons of water to cool. Do your part to conserve power, and you’re indirectly saving water, too!

18. Wash Fido outdoors. That way, you’re watering your yard while you’re cleaning your pup. Just make sure that the soap you’re using isn’t harmful to your plants!

19. Skip the shower from time to time. Do you really need to shower multiple times a day or even daily? Skipping even one shower a week adds up to big water savings.

20. Re-use grey water. Check to make sure that this is legal where you live, but in some areas you can do things like re-route the runoff from your clothes washer and use that water for things like flushing the toilet.

What are some ways that you guys save water around the home? Let’s keep the conservation going in the comments!

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by ginnerobot

Related:
25 Things You Might Not Know About Water
Options for a Waterless Lawn
Tips to Save Water With Each Flush
Top 4 Threats to Earth’s Water

Read more: Conservation, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Green, Home, Lawns & Gardens, Nature, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, , , , ,

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Becky Striepe

Becky Striepe is a freelance writer and vegan crafter living in Atlanta, Georgia. Her life’s mission is to make green crafting and vegan food accessible to everyone! Like this article? You can follow Becky on Twitter or find her on Facebook!

245 comments

+ add your own
11:40PM PST on Dec 18, 2014

This is really a remarkable topic close to my heart thanks. Keep up the good working! lynchburg rentals

8:28PM PDT on Sep 3, 2014

My boyfriend's rain barrel was one of the things that attracted me to him!

7:25AM PDT on Apr 30, 2014

another good tip is instead of pouring any unused water down the sink (eg if you didn't drink your glass of water you bring to bed) use it for watering your plants

12:52PM PDT on Apr 29, 2014

again nice tips :-) my water footstamp will decrease every minit if i'm gone stay and browse some more i guess :D

11:19AM PDT on Apr 25, 2014

I am vegan which has a much smaller water footprint. I work at home so shower and wash my hair when I need to, not every day. I dont use dishwashing soap or dishwasher soap. I rinse all my dishes and clean then with hot water. I use lemon rinds for greasy dishes. I use only eco friendly bleach, baking soda for cleaning. Less chemicals you use, the less water you need to rinse off the chemicals. I also made a low flow toilet with a full gallon jug put in my tank. If we all go vegan and cut our water use by 50 % we might be able to conserve our water to the end of the century.

5:33PM PDT on Apr 24, 2014

All good ideas. Not so keen on taking the car to the wash to save water. Youre just wasting gas and polluting the air. Washing the car before it rains will have you using less hose water to rinse off the car.

6:39AM PDT on Apr 20, 2014

noted with thanks

5:13PM PDT on Mar 23, 2014

When you have a refrigerator that dispenses ice and it falls on floor don't rinse off and reuse, don't toss in sink. Instead put into houseplants or put into outside plants, at base of bushes, shrubs, trees or toss onto dry spots on grass. This can also be done on used ice in glasses after drinking especially when you have company or a party.

3:20PM PDT on Mar 21, 2014

My utility bill alone is enough reason to conserve. I know we can all make a difference, but the corporations and industries play an even bigger role and that is where we are really having the biggest issue. We need to work together to stop all of the destruction.

11:06PM PDT on Nov 2, 2013

great tips

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Very positive article not so positive some of the comments posted by Care 2 members.

Thank you for sharing.

E la buona, vecchia camomilla ?

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