Do you know saving water is not just about saving money? It’s saving the Earth’s resources too. Most folks take clean water for granted, but we’re not most folks, we’re environmentally-conscious folks who understand that water is a precious and limited resource.
I’m going to share savvy practical water saving tips that’ll get you saving both money and water in no time.
According to this article, 97% of the world’s water is in the oceans. But sadly we can’t use it.
That means we’re only reduced to using the remaining 3 %. And even then, it’s found in different forms like freshwater, ice, underground water and so on.
That makes the freshwater that we can really use precious and priceless.
Why our family saves water?
In dollar terms, our family doesn’t have to save water if we don’t want to. That’s because we live in a location where the amount of water we use isn’t metered and charged (Part of our property tax pays for water).
So, why would we save water then?
No, we’re not crazy. (Sometimes, maybe)
Honestly, our goal is to help conserve the Earth’s finite resources in whatever way we can.
Earthquakes and Water
Recently, our experience with earthquakes stretched our water saving measures to the extreme.
Drinking contaminated water from faucets was unsafe, as water pipelines were damaged during the quakes. This allowed dirt and other pollutants into our water supply.
These were our living conditions following the earthquakes:
No water at all for showers or shampooing for weeks.
No water for the dishwasher or washing machine for weeks.
How was life without much water after the quakes?
We had to take extreme measures to reduce the use of water all the time, every single day.
We were very conscious about how much water we should use, so as not to run out of it.
Each day was a constant struggle to decide what we should use our precious water for.
For example, “Should I use the water for rinsing our plates or sponging ourselves?”
Many times, I found myself turning on the faucet, saying “Hey, where’s the water?” before realizing the harsh reality.
How did we cope with so little water?
Every day, there were trucks stationed at specific distribution points to give out containers of water and milk.
We had to queue up at these points to receive our precious water supplies.
One important lesson we learnt is to have emergency supplies of water and canned food at home.
I had to wash my crockery by reusing dirty water the first few times, with the last rinse using completely clean water. Then this rinse water was reserved for the next lot of dishes.
We had to sponge ourselves carefully, squeezing out and saving this water to flush our toilets later. Most folks were using dry shampoo for their hair.
We managed to visit Mr MMT’s workplace to have showers in the staff bathroom on one occasion. It was a heavenly experience to shower away our grime and sweat.
On another occasion, Mr MMT had the brainwave to go swimming at the local pool that was thankfully open. We then enjoyed rinsing before the swim, and showering after our swim.
Our after-swim showers were absolutely delightful!
I hope sharing my experience of water rationing has persuaded you to start saving more water.
Ready for your Saving Water Tips?
Saving Water At Home
#1 Check your home for water leaks
According to this article, household leaks can waste up to almost 10,000 gallons every year.
The most common leaks include “worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves.”
The good news is they’re easy and cheap to fix with a few simple tools and hardware.
The money you save can easily pay for the replacement parts. This alone can save you around 10% of your water bills.
How to know if you’ve water leaks in your home?
-Check how much water you use in winter months, such as January or February.
Are you using more than 12,000 gallons a month for 4 people?
You need to check for leaks.
-Impose a ‘no-use’ water ban for a couple of hours.
Check your water meter before and after the ban. The reading on the meter shouldn’t have changed, if there was no leak.
-To check for toilet leaks, put a drop of food coloring in the toilet tank.
You have a leak if the color goes into the bowl after 10 minutes.
-Check for surface leaks on your faucet and pipes. Is there any water outside the pipe? This video shows you how to replace the washer in a leaky faucet.
How To Save Water in the Shower
#2 Take showers, not baths
The average bath tub takes 36 gallons of water to fill, while the average shower (even without a water-saving device) uses five gallons of water per minute, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
#3 Take shorter showers
A co-worker of mine likes to take 30-minute showers.
Why not just take a 15-minute shower? You’ll save half the amount of water every time you shower.
#4 Turn off the shower when you’re soaping and shampooing
Lots of water wastage is avoided this way. Doing this saves power too.
(This post contains affiliate links. I may receive a small compensation if you purchase through these links. You do not pay extra. Please read my disclosure policy.Thanks for your support. Part of the proceeds has been donated to the South Island Wildlife Hospital. )
#5 Install a water saving 2.5 gpm showerhead
Doing this means you can save $260 a year for a family of four, according to MSN Money.
Click on the picture below to learn more. I’ve placed it here for your convenience.
#6 In winter, before you shower, drain off the cold water into a bucket
Use it to flush your toilet. Don’t just let the cold water flow down the drain.
#7 Consider showering less often in colder seasons
Why not have a sponge bath instead?
How to Save Water when Using Your Faucet
#8 Don’t turn on your faucet full blast every time. Use just enough for your needs.
#9 Turn the faucet off when you shave, brush teeth, soap or shampoo.
Fill your glass or mug with water to use when you brush teeth, instead of using a running tap.
How to Save Water in the Bathroom
#10 Reduce the number of times you flush – only when necessary
#11 You can wash vegetables in a basin, and use the water saved to water your garden or flush your toilet.
#12 Do what Mr MMT does if you dare
When rinsing his face, Mr MMT collects this water in a plastic container in the vanity. He then empties this water into the toilet bowl to flush it when necessary.
He’s happy knowing that he’s doing his part for the environment. I’ve yet to adopt his interesting habit.
#13 Place a filled plastic bottle in the toilet tank
Fill the bottle with water and cap it well. Place it in the toilet cistern. This can potentially save 5 gallons of water a day.
#14 Be flexible when using flush options
For example, use only the full flush for removing ‘solids’, and the ‘half flush’ for light duty.
In our family, we tend to use the ‘half flush’ when needed.
Before heading to the toilet, we’ll ask other family members if they need to go. We cut down on the number of flushes this way.
Want more saving tips you can use every day? Get my 300 Frugal Tips here.
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Now that you know these savvy saving tips, it’s time for you to take action.
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