In Case of Emergency
For Emergencies, Afterhours and Weekends
Small, continuous leaks account for the greatest water waste in the home. Repair dripping faucets by replacing washers. Check for toilet tank leaks by adding food coloring to the tank. If the toilet is leaking, color will appear in the toilet bowl within 30 minutes. Check the toilet for worn out or corroded parts. Most replacement parts are inexpensive, readily available, and easily installed.
Installing water-saving showerheads and low-flow faucet aerators is an inexpensive, easy solution to using less water in your shower. A 4-minute shower uses approximately 20 to 40 gallons of water. Use a timer to help keep track of time spent in the shower – every minute saves water!
When cleaning out fish tanks or aquariums give the nutrient-rich old water to your houseplants. It’s rich in nitrogen and phosphorous – a good fertilizer.
Fill a plastic bottle or milk jug with water and place it in your toilet tank, safely away from the operating mechanisms. This may save 10 or more gallons of water per day. Consider installing “low flush” toilets, which use only 1 to 2 gallons per flush.
You can save up to a gallon of water every time you brush your teeth by simply turning off the tap while you brush. There is no need to keep the water running – just wet your brush and fill a glass for rinsing. Also, filling your sink with a few inches of warm water will rinse your razor while shaving just as well as running water.
Don’t let the faucet run when you scrub vegetables or prepare other foods. Wash your fruits and vegetables in a bowl or dishpan and reuse the dirty water for watering plants. You can do the same when washing dishes by hand.
Refrigerate your drinking water. Instead of letting the water run in the sink when you want a cool drink, keep a handy pitcher full of water in the refrigerator
Dishwashers and clothes washers should be fully loaded for optimum water conservation. You use as much a 25 gallons of water every time you run the dishwasher and up to 30-35 gallons when you run your washer. With washing machines, avoid the permanent press cycle, which uses an added 5 gallons for the extra rinse.
The greatest waste of water is outdoor watering too much and too often. Your garden hose can use more than 10 gallons of water per minute. Watering by hand gives you more control. You can also greatly reduce the amount of water used for shrubs, beds and lawns with strategic placement of soaker hoses, rain barrel catchment, and simple drip irrigation systems.
Position your sprinklers so that water lands on the lawn or garden, not on paved areas. Avoid hosing down your driveway or sidewalk to clean it off; use a broom instead to save hundreds of gallons of drinkable water.