In the United States, almost everyone has access to clean, running water. Because of this, it's easy to become lax in your water consumption habits, and this quickly leads to waste.
The good news is that there are plenty of ways that you can reduce your water usage without making huge changes or spending a lot of money.
Below are five tips to help you keep your resolution to use less water in your home.
1. Upgrade to WaterSense Fixtures
WaterSense is a program established by the Environmental Protection Agency to help companies create water-efficient products and services.
Whenever you see the WaterSense seal on an appliance or fixture, this means that it uses at least 20 percent less water than conventional fixtures and meets all of the EPA's standards for efficiency and energy conservation. This can save hundreds of gallons of water every year and lower your utility bills as well.
The EPA's WaterSense site pages can give you more detailed information and also help you to find products that will work well in your home.
2. Don't Leave the Water Running
It might seem like no big deal to let the water run while you brush your teeth, wash your hands or shave, but all of that unused water adds up fast.
According to the EPA, a single bathroom faucet runs two gallons of water every minute, which means that you can easily waste dozens of gallons of water without realizing it.
Try to establish a habit of turning off the water while you do simple bathroom tasks. Keep a damp cloth on hand to clean your razor blade, and consider installing faucets with handles that easily facilitate turning the water off if your hands are wet.
3. Change Your Dishwashing Habits
Many people let the water run the entire time that they spend washing dishes.
The EPA says that you can halve the amount of water you use by switching to the "dip" method of washing. Try filling your sinks with hot, soapy water for washing and cool, clear water for rinsing so that you don't need running water.
Alternatively, you can also invest in an eco-friendly dishwasher. There are plenty of energy-efficient models in a variety of sizes to suit any kitchen or renovation budget, and they are a great investment in your home. Be sure only to run full loads, and remember to scrape dishes instead of rinsing them before washing.
4. Upgrade Your Washing Machine
Did you know that washing clothes accounts for nearly 20 percent of water use in the average American home? Most families wash at least 300 loads per year, and older washing machines can use anywhere from 30 to 45 gallons of water per load.
Switching to a high-efficiency washer can cut your water use nearly in half. Most of the newer models use only 15 or 20 gallons of water, so upgrading your washer can save considerable amounts of water, energy, and money in the long run.
5. Invest in a Tankless Water Heater
Not only are hot water storage tanks wasteful, but they're also a huge source of stress for homeowners. They need frequent maintenance, and they routinely fail without warning at least once every ten years.
Tankless water heaters eliminate the waste of heating and storing water as well as the burden of maintaining a huge, expensive storage tank. Tankless heaters work by only heating the water you need at the moment, and they can cut your energy usage by up to 50 percent. Most units are also able to send you alerts whenever they need maintenance.
Water Conservation Can Be Easy
Making simple adjustments to your water consumption habits and investing in WaterSense-certified fixtures can help you use less water and feel better about your environmental footprint in 2020. Mark Johnson Plumbing has the experience to help you save water and money this new year. To schedule an appointment, call (318) 257-6167.