Saving water in your home is easy and inexpensive. Try these three simple, do it yourself (DIY) ways to reduce your water use.
1. Install a faucet aerator.
A faucet aerator is connected to the nozzle of the faucet and spreads the water stream into smaller water droplets. This can save water and prevent splashing.
Faucet aerators are easy to install and inexpensive (about $4-6). When shopping for a faucet aerator, look for a WaterSense labeled product. WaterSense certified products can cut water use by up to 30%, and are generally 20 percent more water-efficient than average products in that category.
For example, Neoperl faucet aerators are WaterSense labeled, and some can reduce a standard 2.2 gpm flow to 1.0 gallons per minute (gpm) or 1.5 gpm. Neoperl offers both residential and commercial faucet aerators for the bathroom, kitchen, garden, laundry, and more.
2. Collect rainwater for irrigation.
Using captured rainwater for watering your garden or lawn is a great way to reduce potable (drinking) water use in your home.
While rainwater harvesting systems vary in complexity and sophistication, you can create a pretty simple system by yourself using a rain barrel. Rain barrel prices vary, but you should be able to buy a good one for under $100.
You can use these steps to collect and filter rainwater from your gutter in a rain barrel. Then, you can use the collected rainwater to water your plants and grass.
3. Retrofit your toilet.
Many old toilets waste a lot of water. Under U.S. Federal law, While new toilets must not use more than 1.6 gallons per flush (gpf) under U.S. federal law, many older toilets use 3-5 gpf. According to Insteading, to decrease the amount of water your toilet uses to flush waste, you can simply fill plastic bottles with materials (such as sand or pebbles), screw the lids on, then put them inside the toilet tank (away from the plumbing equipment).
If you’d prefer, you can buy an inexpensive float booster ($4) or tank bank ($1.75 at Eartheasy) for your toilet tank.
If you’d prefer a more sophisticated, tried and true system for reducing your toilet’s water use, check out a dual flush converter, such as MJSI’s Hydroright. The Hydroright dual flush converter, which can be installed in 5-10 minutes without tools, is shown to reduce water usage by 30%.