Water Conservation: Tips for Indoors

General

Before you pour clean water down the drain, see if there are other uses for it. (i.e. watering plants)

  • Check all plumbing for leaks. Have leaks repaired by a plumber.
  • Install aerators on all household faucets to use less water.
  • Insulate your water pipes to reduce heat loss, save energy, and prevent them from breaking.
  • Winterize outdoor spigots when temperatures dip to 20°F to prevent pipes from bursting or freezing.
  • Teach your children to turn the faucets all the way off after each use.
  • Make sure you know where your master water shut-off valve is located. This could save gallons of water and damage to your home if a pipe were to burst.
  • We’re more likely to notice leaky faucets indoors, but don’t forget to check outdoor faucets, pipes, and hoses for leaks.
  • Verify that your home is leak-free, because many homes have hidden water leaks. Read your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter does not read exactly the same, there is a leak.
  • Repair dripping faucets by replacing washers. If your faucet is dripping at the rate of one drop per second, you can expect to waste 2,700 gallons per year!
  • Insulate your water pipes. You’ll get hot water faster and avoid wasting water while it heats up.

Kitchen

  • Only run full loads in the dishwasher.
  • Hand wash dishes with two containers – one with soapy water and one with rinse water containing a small amount of chlorine bleach. Don’t let the water run needlessly when hand-washing dishes.
  • Clean vegetables in a pan filled with water rather than running water from the tap.
  • Start a compost pile as an alternate method of disposing of food waste or simply dispose of food in the garbage. (Kitchen sink disposals require a lot of water to operate properly).
  • Store drinking water in the refrigerator. Do not let the tap run while you are waiting for water to cool.
  • Avoid wasting water waiting for it to get hot. Capture it for other uses such as plant watering or for heating on the stove or in a microwave.
  • Avoid rinsing dishes before placing them in the dishwasher; just remove large particles of food. (Most dishwashers can clean soiled dishes very well, so dishes do not have to be rinsed before washing)
  • Avoid using running water to thaw meat or other frozen foods. Defrost food overnight in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave oven.
  • Fix leaky faucets – just one drip per second can waste 2,700 gallons of water per year!

Bathroom

Quick and Easy Project – Convert your toilet to low-flow!

  • Trade in older toilets for newer low-volume toilets that use less than half the water!
  • If your toilet was installed prior to 1980, place a toilet dam or bottle filled with water in your toilet tank to cut down on the amount of water used for each flush. Be sure these devices do not interfere with operating parts.
  • If your shower head can fill a one-gallon bucket in less than 20 seconds, then replace it with a water-efficient shower head.
  • The toilet is not a trash can! Dispose of tissues, insects, and other similar waste in the trash rather than the toilet.
  • Take a shower instead of a bath! A five minute shower only uses 10-25 gallons while a tub bath can use up to 70 gallons.
  • Turn off the water while you brush your teeth and save 4 gallons a minute. That’s 200 gallons a week for a family of four.
  • Put food coloring in your toilet tank. If it seeps into the toilet bowl, you have a leak. It’s easy to fix, and you can save more than 600 gallons a month.
  • Fix leaky faucets – just one drip per second can waste 2,700 gallons of water per year!

Laundry Room

  • Wash only full loads of laundry.
  • Use the appropriate load size selection on the washing machine.
  • Next time you purchase a washer, choose a high-efficiency model. The average washing machine uses 40.9 gallons per load. High-efficiency machines use less than 27 gallons per load.