You may not think it that often, but water is an essential aspect of our lives.
It may not be surprising to hear that the average U.S. per capita water use is 170 gallons per day (GPD), and it’s estimated that the average American family uses 300 gallons of water per day.
To put that figure into perspective, that’s enough water to fill a six-person hot tub.
You might be wondering how to save water without having to constantly think about your usage day-to-day.
It’s simple enough to suggest using less water, but there are aspects such as staying hydrated, gardening and washing that we need to maintain.
This guide will suggest ten water-saving tips that could go a long way to helping reduce your usage, as well as lighten that water bill.
That can only be a significant plus, so read on to find out.
10 Ways To Start Saving Water
These ten tips offer some short to long-term solutions, so if you want to save water straight away, there are things you can put in place right now.
There are some tips here that may require some planning and installation, but when it comes to paying your water bill, there’s no doubt you’ll see a difference in how much you spend.
You could also lighten the burden on your local authority’s water supply if they are enforcing water restrictions and reduces your carbon footprint.
1. Turn Off The Faucet While Brushing Your Teeth
This tip might sound familiar to you because it’s often the most effective way to reduce water use.
It’s estimated that leaving the water running while brushing your teeth wastes an average of four gallons each time.
If you live in a four-person household, where each person brushes twice each day, that’s 32 gallons of water wasted!
So when brushing your teeth, run the water just enough to wet your toothbrush and immediately turn it back off again.
Once you’ve finished brushing, spit into the sink and run the water just enough to rinse your toothbrush and wash the toothpaste down the drain.
At first, it might be frustrating to get into this habit, but if you stick with the process, it will soon become second nature.
2. Only Run The Washing Machine When You Have A Full Load
If you’re about to start the washing machine or dishwasher, then stop right there!
You want to ensure that you fully load your washing machine and dishwasher as this tip can be used for both appliances.
This tip could really help you here because if you wash with a full load, you can save up to 10 liters of water with each wash.
With a dishwasher, if you load it full, a full-sized model will use no more than 5 gallons per cycle, compared to the 27 gallons of water you use if cleaned by hand, which is also per load.
And washing by hand can be a long and, well, tedious chore, which isn’t news to most.
3. Use A Low Flow Shower Head And Faucet Aerators
When you’re in the shower or using the sink, you may not be thinking about how much water they dispense, but a standard shower head dispenses about 2.5 gallons of water each minute.
A low-flow shower head can dispense 2 gallons or less of water.
With a low-flow showerhead, 175 minutes of showering uses just 262 gallons of water, compared to a regular one that soaks up nearly 440 gallons of water in one month from shower use alone.
If you check your faucets, you may find an aerator fitted as standard on any faucet in your house.
You’re looking for a small metal screen disk, which some might assume is just a filtration device.
It can save you water by making water flow more productive and can give your water a softer touch and cleaner taste.
4. Stop Throwing Waste In Your Toilet
If you use cotton swabs, wipes, or cotton balls, you might not be surprised to learn that they disagree with our drainage system.
Items like these tend to clump together and cause clogging, which can cause problems when you try to flush your toilet and can waste gallons of water each time.
The best tip here is to have a dustbin in your washroom and be mindful of where you put that swab when you’re finished using it.
5. Fix Any Leaks
Do you have a dripping faucet that drives you crazy?
When you’re looking for leaks, you may want to check the most common types of leaks that are found in the home, including worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves.
After all, with all that dripping water, it’s not surprising to hear that an average household’s leaks can account for nearly 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year.
Add that to the ten percent of homes with leaks that waste 90 gallons or more daily. Well, what are you waiting for? Get looking.
6. Install A Dual Flush Or Low Flow Toilet
This might not be possible for most people, but if you’re planning a bathroom renovation, you might want to consider having a dual flush or low flow toilet installed.
These types of toilets have a split flush button which gives you the choice of how much water to use.
Dual flush toilets typically use 1.6 gallons of water as opposed to the old-style flush systems, which use 3.5 gallons per flush.
Considering the average person will flush 20.1 gallons of water per day, you can see how water charges begin to add up.
With this installed, you won’t have to be as mindful of how much water you use, and limiting your visits could be, well, uncomfortable.
7. Don’t Overwater Your Lawn
It can be difficult to know how much water is enough, especially if you live in an area prone to heatwaves.
It’s a no-brainer that you may use a considerable amount of water, as 30 to 60% of domestic drinking water is used to water yards and gardens.
A few things you can do are use rain barrels, use lawn food 2-4 times a year, and, if you can, rely on the rain a little more often.
8. Plant A Rain Garden For Catching Stormwater Runoff
If you find that you’re going for the hosepipe a little more often than you’d like, then a rain garden might be an option you could consider.
If you have a variety of plants in your garden, you can make a depression around it that collects any excess water from heavy rain and can channel it into your rain garden.
This may not be possible for those with small gardens or limited flowerbeds, but if you can, you could give your garden a lovely makeover at the same time.
9. Sweep Your Driveway Instead Of Powerwashing It
It can seem very convenient and easy to use a powerwash but consider the amount of water you waste trying to hit those gaps and details, especially if you own a larger drive.
A broom may seem a less attractive option, but you can clean any debris and dirt just as well as a power washer.
If this option still sounds daunting, either try to limit how often you use a power washer or let the rain remove the majority of debris on your drive.
10. Be Cautious While Washing Your Car
It may be tempting to get out the hose and have your car clean in minutes, but the average single wash of a car uses anything between 40 to 140 gallons of water.
If you’re looking for simple ways to save water, you can use water from buckets or a nozzle to reduce the water flow from your hose.
On most days, you could use a microfiber cloth and a cleaning solution which can be enough to make your car shine.
This way, you’re conserving water for when you really need to use it, or you could let the rain give you a helping hand from time to time.
If you follow even a few of these tips, you’re likely to see a reduction in your water bill.
If you begin to be more mindful of your water use, you’re bound to have a better understanding of how your bill is broken down and see if a change here or there can affect your bill.
You can also encourage your family to adopt some of these tips so you don’t have to break down each family member’s water usage.
Overall, you might have to do some chores in a less convenient way, and if this doesn’t interest you, then get the family involved.
You can make games out of them, and you can save water at the same time, so you’re incentivized to try out other methods.
If you’re still not convinced, then maybe there are ways you could limit your use of water that won’t leave you daunting that next car wash.