If you're looking to save money, one way that you may approach it is to see what things you can do to cut back on water usage. This saves you on your quarterly water bill from the city; if you have your own well, you save on electrical costs since the well doesn't have to run as often. The beauty of doing this is that there are a lot of very easy ways to cut back that make integrating them into your life as simple as ever. Below are some of the best.
1. Change out leaking fixtures.
Often, old faucets are going to leak. It may not be much - just a drip every few seconds from your tub, for example - but it can drive the cost up tremendously. You may be going through gallons on a weekly or even a daily basis. Changing out the faucets and other fixtures can stop these leaks and seal things back up. Yes, it does take a bit of an investment up front, but it can really help in the long run.
2. Change outdoor spigots.
Another common area for leaks is an outdoor spigot. This happens because the inside of the spigot is wearing out. Each time that you turn it, you have to turn a bit harder to cut off the flow of water. Eventually, you will have worn out the gasket, and it can't fully clamp down. To fix this, you can either install a new spigot or you can tear the old one apart, replace the gaskets, and put it back together again. Either way, you can cut back on wasted water outside the home.
3. Never use your toilet like a trash can.
Some people like to throw away little things - cigarette butts are common - in the toilet. They do this because it is convenient and easy. In the case of cigarette butts, they also feel safer since the water puts out the cigarette. However, you could literally double the amount of times that you flush the toilet by doing this, so you are wasting gallons of water every day. Changing this habit saves a lot.
4. Don't leave the water on while you do the dishes.
If you do your dishes by hand, you may be tempted to leave the water running so that you can wash a dish, rinse it off, and set it aside to dry. However, having the water on the whole time uses far more than filling up the second sink with soapy, clean dishes and then spraying them all off at the same time.
5. Fill your washing machine.
You could be tempted to throw your dirty clothes into the laundry in small loads. For example, you could get done running on your treadmill, in your basement, and decide to strip off your workout clothes and toss them right into the laundry so that they are ready for the next day. However, you would then use a whole load's worth of water for a pair of shorts and a shirt, which is very wasteful. You always want to run bigger loads so that you can do less of them.
As you can see, a few easy changes is all that it takes to start saving water and saving money today.
Charlie Teschner started MESA Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling in 1982. Charlie has a journeyman and master plumber’s license. He was raised with a strong work ethic and he now applies those values to tasks such as Boulder plumbing repair.