How Are We Wasting Water At Home?
Did you know that 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered by water? However, only about 1% of it is freshwater which can be used for drinking and domestic consumption. According to the World Health Organization, 2.1 billion people lack access to clean drinking water. Canadians use 335 liters of water per person every day! This is the equivalent of 670 500 ml water bottles. We use over twice as much water as Europeans. About 10% is used for cooking and drinking, 35% for bathing, 30% for toilet flushing, and 25% for laundry and cleaning. How we are wasting water at home is a very important topic.
What can we do to reduce water waste? You can reduce your water usage by replacing dripping faucets, taking shorter showers, or shutting off the tap while brushing your teeth. Developing better habits and conserving water can also help you save on your water bill.
Our old fixtures, inefficient appliances, faulty plumbing, and bad habits waste a lot of water every day. An older toilet with a faulty flapper valve can waste gallons of water per hour as it constantly runs and refills the tank. The ways we waste water include:
Flushing Trash Down The Toilet
Toilets are the biggest source of water use in your home. Did you know your toilet uses nearly a third of your household’s indoor supply? Every time you flush a facial tissue or feminine product, you waste five to seven gallons of water. Flushing anything other than human waste and toilet paper can clog your pipes and drains.
Long Showers & Baths
Most Canadians shower for 5-8 minutes. This uses up to 17.2 gallons of water. By reducing your shower by 2 minutes, you can save up to 2600 litres per month! One bubble bath can use 30 gallons of water.
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Switching to a low-flow showerhead cuts the water use in half! Low-flow fixtures use about 2 gallons of water per minute instead of 5 gallons for regular ones.
Leaking Pipes & Faucets
Did you know your home can leak more than 10,000 gallons of water annually? Look for leaks around your toilet, faucets, hose bibbs, and other plumbing fixtures. A leaky tap dripping 6 drops a minute wastes 1200 litres of water a year! That’s the equivalent of 7 bathtubs. Repair or replace any leaking water lines as soon as possible. If your water bill increases, this may be a sign of a hidden leak.
Small Laundry Loads
Do full loads of laundry as often as possible. This will save water and also lower your water bill.
Partial Dishwasher Loads
Make sure your dishwasher is completely full before you run it. You can also choose the light cycle instead of a normal cycle.
Over Watering The Lawn
Water your lawn early in the morning between 5-10am. At this time, the air is cooler and water evaporates more slowly. Your lawn only needs to be watered twice a week. Keep in mind you have to abide by local municipal water restrictions.
Leaving The Water Running When Brushing Teeth
Turn off the tap while you’re brushing your teeth. This will save gallons each day!
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