Have you noticed a recent spike in your water bill? Or maybe just a slow increase over time?
According to Bluefield Research, “Average water and sewer bills have increased about 50 percent over the last decade.”
As water prices continue to go up, this is a great opportunity to learn some creative ways to conserve water.
These 12 tips are fairly easy to implement and the savings will add up over time. Let’s get started!
1. Check for leaks
Leaks are one of the main culprits for a higher water bill.
To check for leaks, you’ll want to start with your toilets first.
Put 4 – 5 drops of food coloring into your toilet tank. If you notice any coloring in the toilet bowl within 15 minutes, you have a leak in the flapper valve.
For other leaks besides the toilet, you can call your city/water company to see if they can pinpoint it.
2. Use a bucket to collect the water from your shower as it warms up
How long does it take your shower to warm up? A minute or two?
As you’re waiting to get into the shower, grab a bucket and let the it fill up with cold shower water.
You can use the shower water for many things such as watering plants, flushing the toilets, bathing pets, and washing your car.
3. Invest in a low flow shower head
Did you know that low flow shower heads can decrease water consumption by up to 40 percent?
That’s because these shower heads have a flow rate of 2.0 GPM (Gallons Per Minute) or less. So when you take a 10 minute shower, you’d use a maximum of 20 gallons of water.
That can equate to tons of savings on your water bill when compared to shower heads with higher GPM!
This is a shower head on Amazon with 1.8 GPM that has great ratings. We will be purchasing them for our future home.
4. Take a "military" shower
This one is a HUGE money saver.
A military shower is when you get in the shower long enough to get wet and turn off the water to lather up and shampoo your hair.
Then you turn the water back on to quickly rinse.
5. Collect the water used to rinse dishes
Similar to collecting water from your shower, you can put a tub into your sink and collect the water from rinsing food off of dishes.
Believe it or not, plants actually love the “grey water” from the sink.
6. Invest in a rain barrel
If you have a lot of plants, or want to water your lawn for free, consider investing in a rain barrel.
Rain barrels collect water from your roof every time it rains. You can then use this water for your lawn and plants, to wash your car, and even clean flooring.
Check with your local city or county government to see if you can get a discounted barrel.
You can also make a DIY rain barrel if you have the tools and materials outlined in this video.
Or if you don’t want all of the hassle of making it yourself, you can purchase one on Amazon. Here’s the rain barrel we plan to purchase once we own a home.
7. See if your city/water company has peak hours for water use
In some areas, there are peak times in the day where you will pay more for water usage.
You’ll want to reach out to your city or water company to see if there are peak water usage times. Then, plan your water usage outside of those times.
8. Run your washer only when it is full
This is probably the least creative tip on the list, but so important!
The longer you can go without doing laundry, the better. Only wash full loads.
9. Reuse your cooking water
Have you ever saved your pasta, boiled egg, or potato water?
If not, now is a great time to start! Just use a pair of tongs or large spoon to transfer food from the pot to a collider.
You can reuse the water for your plants, cooking, washing pots/pans, and even soaking your feet.
10. Fill a one-liter bottle with water and put it in the toilet tank
You may have heard of the frugal trick to put a brick into your toilet tank to conserve water.
When there is a brick in the tank, less water is needed to fill the tank and the toilet will use less water when flushing.
But I am here to inform you that it is not a good idea to use a brick for this purpose. This is because the sediment from a brick can settle in the toilet tank and cause damage.
Instead, use a one-liter bottle filled with water and make sure it is not touching any of the parts in the toilet.
11. Reuse your pet's water they don't drink
Do you pour your pet’s water down the sink to refill the bowl?
Try reusing that water instead for watering plants, flushing the toilet, or cleaning.
12. Shower outside of your home anytime possible
Anytime you have an opportunity to shower outside of your home for free, take it! Here are some examples of places you can take a shower:
- The gym
- A friend/family’s home
- Hotel rooms that are paid for by your company or business
- Truck stops