Reducing interior water use
Bathrooms account for the majority of home water use. You can make some of these adjustments in your bathroom to lower water use immediately:
- Use a low-flow shower head
- Install a faucet aerator to reduce sink water use
- Shorten shower time
- Install a high-efficiency flush toilet or dual flush toilet
- Fix any bathroom leaks, such as faucet, toilet or water hose leaks
- Don't leave water running while you brush your teeth
- Collect water that runs while the faucet or shower is heating, then use this to water plants
Reducing exterior water use
Garden, home cleaning and exterior water use can add up. Creative thinking and inexpensive modifications can reduce much of your outside water use. Easy changes that will have a big impact include:
- Water the garden in the morning or evening, when temperatures are cooler and water used is less likely to evaporate. You'll need to water plants less frequently when you make this change
- Mulch around garden plants and shrubs to help roots retain moisture for longer.
- Plant new plants in the fall when they're more likely to receive natural rainfall and won't be stressed out by summer heat.
- Plant local shrubs and flowers that are adapted to grow in your area's natural conditions and may be more drought tolerant.
- Save water used to rinse produce, then water plants with this.
- Consider adding a rain barrel to collect water for your flowers and garden.
Adopt one to two changes a week to slowly and steadily decrease your use of water. These are just a sampling of low-cost, low-effort ways to conserve water. As you conserve water, you'll also notice reduced utility bills since it costs energy to heat water. After you work through these strategies, identify new ways to save water that make sense for your lifestyle.