Unless you live in a desert, you probably have no idea how valuable water is. Water comes into your home through a tap and leaves through the drain, and you probably don't even think about how much of it you use - or how much of it you waste. But clean drinking water accounts for less than 1% of all the water on Earth, and once it's dirty it's very difficult to clean, so we must all do our part to conserve water and make sure there's enough for everyone in the future. Here are some easy steps you can take.
Go Low Flow
If it's time to renovate your property, consider installing low flow taps, toilets, and shower heads in your house. They use as little as one sixth the water of a normal appliance. Even better than low flow is automated taps, where a sensor dispenses appropriate amounts of water when it senses hands or bodies are underneath it. If replacing the toilet is not on your agenda, simply place a soda bottle full of water into your toilet tank to reduce the amount of water it uses on each flush.
You can conserve without renovating just by using less water in your houses. Turn the tap off while brushing your teeth. Take shorter showers or baths, which use less water, wash the car sparingly, allow the rain to water your lawn, only run the dishwasher or the clothes washer when the unit is full, and consider only flushing the toilet when necessary. You may also want to consider installing a high efficiency gas boiler, or wall mounted wall heater in your home, like the one pictured below from Marathon International. They are much more eco-friendly because they heat the water only when it's needed and close to where it's needed, so you don't waste water waiting for the flow to get warm.
Utilize Grey Water
Just like you use scrap paper, you can also use scrap water. Collect rainwater from gutters in barrels and use it to water your plants or wash your car. Collect the water you use to rinse veggies in a basin and use it to water your houseplants or fill your toilet tank. Just remember to avoid pouring soap into your greenery.
A lot of water is wasted every day through leaky toilets, showers, taps, and pipes. If you notice a problem, have it fixed right away. While waiting for the plumber, you can collect the dripping water in a bucket to use later so it won't be wasted. If plumbing fees are not in your budget or your landlord is notoriously slow with repairs, buy a monkey wrench and learn to tighten a nut yourself.
Would you like more water conservation tips? Read Save Our Water.