One of the unavoidable expenses of homeownership is paying the monthly bill for water. Of course, it’s fair that you should be paying someone that has built out the infrastructure that makes it possible for you to simply turn a tap and get as much safe, potable water as you need.
But are you using—and paying for—more water than you actually need? With a few smart tricks, you can cut down the water that you use!
Get Your Car Washed
Depending on the set up you have at home, once you turn on the hose to wash your car, you can end up wasting a lot of water. Conventional thinking is that this is cheaper than getting your car washed at a professional facility, but you may be surprised to learn this isn’t always the case.
With new facilities such as self-service car wash centers, you pay far less money. You also don’t use your own water—which you’d pay for in your bill at the end of the month. More importantly for the environmentally conscious, you’re also not letting waste chemicals like cleaner flow into the sewer, as car wash centers usually recycle and reuse water more efficiently.
Use Grey Water in Your Garden
The term grey water refers to water that’s already been used in your home in some capacity, such as washing dishes, or taking a bath. Even water collected in something like a rain barrel is considered greywater, since it hasn’t been treated, and therefore may not be safe for drinking.
Your plants and grass, however, are hardier than your stomach. So if you use your greywater in your garden to keep your plants or your lawn hydrated, that’s a smart, efficient use of your water that stretches your dollar and keeps your monthly bills lower.
Get Rid of Leaks
Leaks are the worst way to lose money on your water bill because it’s paying for water you didn’t even get to use. First, confirm that you actually have a leak. Some modern water meters will have leak indicators, but even if yours does not, your meter can still show you whether a leak exists.
Just take a reading of your meter, then don’t use any water in your home for anywhere from 10 minutes to a couple of hours. If your meter usage has still gone up, you have a problem.
Now it’s just a matter of tracking the leak down. You may find it yourself by checking your water pipes, or you may need a professional plumber to do some tracking if there are pipes you can’t easily access and check.
Take More Showers
While a bath is quite relaxing, it can also use anywhere from 20 to 50 gallons of water to fill a tub. A modern shower, on the other hand, uses about 2.5 gallons for minute. This means that a quick, five minute shower can save you big on water usage.
However, if you’re living in a home with plumbing prior to 1992, your shower head may be “unrestricted,” meaning it doesn’t benefit from the many water saving design techniques modern plumbing enjoys. You can quickly address this with an upgrade for more savings.
Following these water conservation tricks means that you can be smarter about the way you use your water and, consequently, pay less when those bills come in. And when you live in an area like Tyler, TX, it pays to be more mindful of water use.