Summer is the peak season for water usage in America. Depending on where you live, water usage can account for as much as 50% or more of your monthly utility bill. And rising temperatures year after year due to climate change, it's more important than ever to save water to protect against droughts, and help to strengthen our planet’s ecosystem.
Here are some ways you can help conserve water, save on utility bills, and help the planet this summer.
Lawns need at least one inch of water per week, and more if there's a heatwave. Water your lawn early morning or in the evening after the sun goes down. If you tend to your lawn in the middle of the day, that water may get lost due to evaporation from the summer heat.
Hold off on at-home car washes.
Don't wash your cars at home during summer. Use a commercial car wash that recycles water. You’ll use almost twice as much water as if you took your vehicle to the car wash. Plus, you'll save on the time and hassle it takes to clean your car at home.
Install low-flow toilets.
Toilets account for nearly 30 percent of residential indoor water consumption. While low-flow toilets are often more expensive to install and maintain than traditional toilet fixtures, they can also save you a significant amount of money over time on water bills. The EPA estimates that homeowners save as much as $110 per year on their water bills simply by switching to low-flow toilets.
Can't install a new toilet? Put a plastic bottle filled with water in your toilet tank to reduce the amount of water used per flush.
Fix leaky plumbing.
The average household's leaks can account for nearly 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year and ten percent of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day. Common but easy to fix leaks found in the home are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves.
Manage your sprinklers.
Place your sprinklers strategically so you don't waste water on your house, sidewalk, or street.
Take shorter showers.
A shorter shower not only saves water but also saves on the energy used to heat that water. Trimming just two minutes off your shower can save up to 1,750 gallons of water per person in your household each year.