Looking for simple ways to cut costs in your home? By saving water, you can save money. The majority of water wasted in a home comes from the bathrooms- brushing teeth, shaving, toilets, and taking showers consume hundreds of gallons a day. Also, water is Earth's most precious resource. Cutting back on water usage not only saves money, it's better for the planet. Sounds like a win-win to me. Here are a few simple add-ons you can purchase at a low cost that will save you in the long-run...
Simple Add-Ons To Save Money
1. Low-flow showerhead -
The standard showerhead uses 2.5 gallons per minute at about 80 psi, based on current U.S regulations. In comparison, a low flow showerhead uses no more than 2.0 per minute or less. Trust me, the .5 makes a difference when you take a long time to actually get in the shower waiting for it to heat up or you just take long showers. The average American family uses about 40 gallons of water per day in the shower, and about 20% of that is wasted due to the bad habit of waiting too long for it to heat up.
Additionally, showers are also energy hogs. "They’re typically one of the largest drags on the hot water heater in the home, and water heating itself accounts for almost 17 percent of total home electricity, according to the Department of Energy. Thus, cutting back on hot water waste in showers has a double benefit, saving water and power and money on two separate bills."
If every home in America installed low flow shower heads, we could potentially save more than 250 billion gallons of water annually! That much water could supply more than 2.5 million homes with water for a year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Also, these water savings will reduce demands on water heaters, saving you even more money.
Interested in purchasing one? Look for shower heads labeled 'WaterSense' approved by the EPA, certifying the flow rates are below 2 gallons per minute without you noticing the difference in pressure. you can find them on Amazon, Home Depot and more.
estimated savings- 2,900 gallons per year and the average family could save more than 370-kilowatt hours of electricity annually, enough to power a house for 13 days
2. Low-Flow toilets
A low-flow or low-flush toilet uses significantly less water (1.3 gallons per flush) than older full-flush toilets (they can use 3.5, 5, or even up to 7 gallons of water with every flush). They are required in all newly built homes but older ones do not have them and waste an unecessary amount of water and fill up your septic tank. The sound of the water flushing is also taking your money down the drain with it.
"Toilets are by far the main source of water use in the home, accounting for nearly 30 percent of an average home's indoor water consumption" according to the EPA.
"High-efficiency toilets use even less water than standard low-flow models, some as little as 1.1 gallons. Dual-flush toilets, which have separate flush modes for solid and liquid waste, are another water-saving option. The differences in performance may seem trivial, but switching from a standard to a low-flow toilet can save thousands of gallons of water per year."
estimated savings- more than $110 per year in water costs, $2,200 over the lifetime of the toilets and nearly 13,000 gallons of water savings
Aerators are simply screwed onto the faucet head, mixing air with water to reduce water usage without altering water pressure drastically. Aerators go best in areas mainly used for washing hands, dishes or food like the kitchen.
Interested in purchasing one? You can find good, cheap aerators on Amazon!
estimated savings start at $110 per year
Change These 8 Daily Habits & Save Money
Don't want to spend money on new fixtures? Here are more ways to cut down water usage, and still save money, by simply changing a few daily habits:
1. We have all heard it before, but it really makes all the difference- turn the faucet off when brushing your teeth! There's no reason for it to be on while you are scrubbing away.
2. When shaving your face, fill the sink with warm water to rinse off instead of turning the faucet on and off.
3. Fill a milk jug with sand or stones and place it in your toilet tank to displace water.
4. Don't wait to fix leaks.
5. Reducing the time you shower by even two minutes.
6. When waiting for bath water to warm up, you can fill up a bucket with the colder water and use it later to water plants.
7. Don't walk away and do errands when waiting for the shower to heat up- waiting in the bathroom and being ready to hop in when it gets warm is much more efficient.
8. Wash your car at a professional car wash versus washing it yourself at home. The average car wash uses 35 gallons of water per car, but at home, you can use hundreds of gallons without even realizing it. Also, washing your car at home sends pollutants such as oil and detergents into the street, grass and drain that are not good for the environment and animals.
It really is that simple to save water and save money! Changing a few fixtures and a few habits can go a long way. We do not have an endless supply of water. Being conscious does not only make you eco-friendly, it also allows you to cut costs on your water bill and much more. To learn more ways to save money while being conscious of the environment stay tuned for more posts!