It might not seem like it now, but clean water is a scarce resource. Only 1 percent of the entire world’s water supply is safe for human consumption. And yet, despite the obvious issue of scarcity facing all of us, the average North American still uses between 80-100 gallons of water a day. A lot of this water is used for landscaping purposes or taking 20 minute-showers every day – beautification practices that are important to our mental and physical well-being but that might just be a little over-the-top at the moment in terms of water usage.
To put things into perspective, consider that the cost of residential water consumption in America has skyrocketed in the last decade.
- In 2011, a family of 4 using 150 gallons of water per person every day was spending $71 a month.
- In 2018, the same family of 4 using 150 gallons of water per person every day is spending $112 a month. That’s a steep increase in your energy bill!
As you can see, something has to change in our relationship to water consumption. The first thing that can change is the consumer’s consumption habits. As it turns out, there are a number of easy changes you can make to help you save water today. The four easiest areas to begin with are:
- Get A Newer Model of Toilet
It’s worth remembering that toilets process through quite a bit of water each day. Newer toilets are made to use less water, which can be a substantial saving if you have kids in the house. A cheaper solution is to replace the flapper and valve, but if your toilet is 10+ years old then you will definitely benefit from an upgrade.
- Upgrade Your Washing Machine
Much like toilets, older washing machines tend to guzzle water. The mechanics and parts are always being improved upon by manufacturers, including water efficiency (or the volume of water needed for each load). Check the resale value of your existing washing machine and invest in a sustainable option that saves you money.
- Capture Rainwater for Your Gardening or Landscaping Projects
If you have a garden or lawn and want to keep it fertile while also cutting back on water consumption, there is a pretty simple solution for you. Connect the gutter on your roof to a plastic bin on the ground, and then every time it rains the water from your roof will be siphoned off into the bin. Now you don’t need to use fresh water to water your lawn!
- Check Your Water Pressure
Water pressure is essentially the speed and volume at which water flows through your plumbing. If the water pressure reading is above 60 pounds per square inch it can be harmful to the pipes and may cause a leak. Check with your water authority about the water pressure in your area, and if the reading is over 60 then it is advisable to install a valve to reduce the pressure.
Rounding It Up
These are a few easy home improvement projects that you can make to start using less water. It might feel like a burden at first, but before too long you will get into the groove. For more information and additional tips, contact your local professionals!