The CBS Evening News did a story recently that talked about the water supply that we have on Earth. They went further to state how even though earth is full abundance of water, actually usable drinking water is, if I remember correctly, less than 1% of total water. (Correct me if I am wrong, I can’t find the story to cite my source.) After each of us finish each day, doing laundry, brushing teeth, taking showers, doing dishes, flushing the toilet, and everything else, the average American uses over 100 gallons of water a day.
The last couple of days, I have been trying to figure out what I use water on, and how to use less, or how to change my habits and the house habits over all. This overall not only will help make the little water we have left on Earth last longer, but also reduce my water bill as well. I am going to make a list of things that I thought of, and things that have already been said repeatedly with others. I hope that in sharing my thoughts others would pass the word and work on lessening their water usage too. Please feel free to add more water saving tips, and repost or link to this post.
Taking a Shower
Take showers instead of baths. I know all of us love baths every now and then, and heaven knows we all need them for stress relief or what not. Baths use more water than what a shower consumes.
Try to take fast showers. If you where to plug the bathtub to see how much water you use, it also can help you gage how fast you are taking a shower. If the bathtub starts to get higher than your ankle, the shower is going to long. Try to find ways to take short cuts. Scrub faster?
Wash your hair first don’t rinse it right away, quickly go to washing your body, and while you are washing your body, stand under the shower and rinse your hair. This is one of those "killing two birds with one stone" kind of ideas. I have long hair down to my waist right now and it does work well.
When waiting for the water to warm up in the shower, don’t wait long. I angle the showerhead away from me and stand in the tub. As soon as I can comfortably get into the shower, I do so. This cuts down on water wasting while you wait.
This one was impressive for me. If many of you ever been to my house, you know I LOVE plants. I have them all over. While I was waiting for the water to get hot for me to put on the stove for dinner, and wash some knives, I was staring off and saw that the water was just going down the drain. I was thinking about how could I save the water, I looked up and saw my plants. (Queue up the light turning on.)
While you wait for the water temperature to be what you need, gather the water in a glass or two and use it to water your plants, water the animals, or even fill the water filter.
Get a bowl/tub/pan to leave in the sink so when you are washing dishes by hand you can use the hot water in the receptacle again lessening the water that goes down the drain.
Clean off your dishes as soon as possable. The longer it sets waiting for you to clean it, the harder it becomes and requires more scrubbing and more water to loosen the stuff.
As gross as it may, in reality it isn’t that bad. My kids, repeated by my husband, brought home a phrase that has been sticking in my head for a little time. I understand it is grose when this happens in a place you don't know the people that do it. Part of why I don’t complain much when it happens at the house. "If it is yellow let it mellow, if it is brown flush it down." Why is this not so bad? You body had a built in filter for your urine. The kidneys process the blood supply, removing the water-soluble waste from the and passing the waste on to be stored in the bladder. When urine exits your body it actually is sterile. Let the yellow mellow a few times a day. If we were to do this at home, it would save gallons of water a day over all.
When brushing your teeth you can do one of two things, Either have a glass of water near for you to fill and use instead of running the water, or turn off the water while you are scrubbing. Also reduce the flow of water to a soft mild flow, you don’t need it full blast to get water to rinse your mouth.
When washing your hands, also try to do the low flow especially while you are scrubbing your hands with soup. The water just goes just waiting for you to use. If you have the water on less, you use less while you wait. Or even better, Have a bottle of hand sanitizer also available where you wash your hands, reducing even more water consumption.
Try to have plants that use less water and do not require high water. Shade also helps in your grass not needing to be watered. Rock gardens, arid friendly plants… all a plus.
Don’t cut the grass too short, especially on very hot days. Try to cut the grass close to the end of the day.
If you have to water your grass do it at night. If that is not an option, invite the neighborhood kids over for a run in the sprinklers, or even get environmentally friendly soap and wash the pet. :)
Hope this gave some people food for thought. Again, please feel free to add more if you can.