Green Tips: Celebrate World Water Day by Conserving Water at Home

Green Tips | March 22, 2019

In last week’s Green Tips, we suggested ways to celebrate and protect water in honor of World Water Day on March 22, 2019. We can also celebrate this day by conserving water at home. In the U.S., the average household uses 400 gallons of water a day! Cut back by trying some of our tips below:

In the kitchen:

  • Consider upgrading to an ENERGY STAR-rated dishwasher instead of washing dishes by hand. These can save over 20 gallons of water. Also, run the dishwasher only when it’s full.
  • Wash your vegetables in a bowl instead of under running water in the sink. Doing this eliminates excess water from being wasted while running.
  • Eat more veggies in general. Producing meat, poultry, and dairy products involve the use of water-intensive feed, such as corn and soybeans. Conserve the need for this type of feed by cutting back on meat in your diet. Read our guide to Meatless Mondays for more information.

In the bathroom:

  • Did you know that the bathroom wastes more water than any other room in your house?
  • Take shorter showers. Install a low flow showerhead to save water. Pro-tip: take a bucket in with you to capture runoff water for your plants.
  • Toilets use the most water in the house: 5 to 7 gallons per flush. Consider a low-flow toilet, since they use as little as 1.6  gallons per flush. Alternately, just flush less! You can also place a plastic bottle full of water in the toilet tank to reduce the gallons of water used in flushing. But, don’t use a brick since it will release sediment!
  • Toilet leaks can waste up to 100 gallons of water a day. Check for leaks annually by dropping a dye tablet or food coloring in the tank. If the color of the water in the bowl changes, you need to repair the toilet mechanism.
  • Brush your teeth and shave without leaving the water running in the sink. An average of 2.5 gallons of water per minute runs from most bathroom faucets. Simply save it by turning off your faucet until you need it.

Around the house:

  • Go through your home to look for dripping faucets, hoses, and sprinklers. Fix faucet drips by replacing washers and put aerators on the faucets.
  • You may be able to get a home water audit from your local government. New York City offers a do-it-yourself water audit. Take a look at Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties for more home audit suggestions.

In the Yard:

  • A large portion of the 30-60% of our drinking water that is used for gardening is wasted by overwatering lawns or misdirecting sprinklers. Make sure your sprinkler is set to deliver only the amount of water that is necessary for your lawn.
  • In summer, don’t water lawns during drought alerts. You can also replace the lawn with plants that use less water, such as succulents, and plants that thrive in hot, dry weather.

Visit your local car wash instead of washing your car with a hose. This not only benefits your small business community, but it could also save between 50 to 100 gallons of water.

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