We can’t live without water. But what we can live without are high water utility bills.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the average American household uses around 300 gallons of water each day, racking up a water bill of approximately $70.39 per month. Although water isn’t the most expensive utility (compared to electricity and gas), it’s the easiest one to cut back on. By being smart with your water consumption, you can keep your water bill low and reduce your overall household expenses.
For many homeowners, a dripping or leaking faucet doesn’t cause alarm. After all, it’s just one small drip after another, right? A leaky faucet might not seem like a concern, but it should be. Ten drips a minute can result in 350 gallons of wasted water each year.
Head to the nearest hardware store and get yourself a screwdriver. That should be enough to take care of the problem.
Avoid using the washing machine if you’re planning on washing only a couple of t-shirts. It will use the same amount of water regardless of the number of clothes that you throw into the machine. Wait until your laundry basket is full enough so that you can run a full load of laundry. Additionally, you may want to switch to a washing machine with an Energy Star rating, as it uses only 14 gallons of water per load, compared to the usual 19 gallons used by other models.
Contrary to popular belief, hand-washing actually wastes more water than using the dishwasher. Standard dishwashers use around 6 gallons per cycle. In comparison, a continuously flowing faucet uses up to two gallons per minute. If you have to wash a pile of dishes, you may be better off using the dishwasher instead.
Another great way to slash your water utility bill is by installing low-flow toilets. They use less than 1.6 gallons of water per flush, compared to standard toilets that use anywhere between 5 to 7 gallons per flush. Designed with smaller tanks, they do not need to be refilled with so much water after each flush. Many modern toilets also feature dual-flush systems, allowing the users to regulate the amount of water used to flush the waste.
Every minute that you cut from your shower lets you save as much as 2.5 gallons of water. Turn off the shower while you shampoo your hair or soap up your body, and turn it back on again when it’s time to rinse. It is recommended to take showers in under five minutes.
If you want to determine the best ways to save water, you may want to ask your water company. They’ll be able to identify the specific areas in which you’re using the most water.
By taking these baby steps, you will find yourself saving a nice chunk of money on your water utility bill each month. There are hundreds of ways to save water -- all it takes is your commitment and effort!