Simple Ways to Conserve Water in Your Home - firstenergyhome | Blog
50 views | May 19, 2020

Simple Ways to Conserve Water in Your Home

From new purchases to new ways of thinking, there are many ways to help conserve water in your home

Simple Ways to Conserve Water in Your Home

While 70% of the Earth is covered in water, only 0.4 percent of it is accessible fresh water to be shared by some 7 billion people.1  In America, regional droughts can amplify the relative water scarcity. Our consumption can also lead to overuse of the resource from rivers, lakes, watersheds and other freshwater sources.

That’s the big picture. Now let’s zero in on the typical American household. Your family might use about 130,000 gallons a water a year.2 The good news is that by better understanding your water use and a few simple and painless ways to cut back, you might save about 35 percent of your family’s consumption. That translates to an annual savings of around 44,000 gallons.2

Remember, that’s just the conservation contribution of a single American household.

Our consumption habits

Household water consumption comes in the form of several daily activities that are so commonplace we rarely give them much thought in terms of water consumption. Here are some of the leading ways we use -- and waste -- this valuable resource, and how we might save water:3

  • Toilets -- This is a big water user. Older toilets can use as much as 6 gallons with every flush. Newer ultra-low volume (ULV) toilets are federally regulated to flush no more than 1.6 gallons. The purchase of a ULV toilet can automatically reduce your water consumption in this category by about 70 percent. This also represents about a 30 percent savings in your entire indoor water consumption.

    Furthermore, you can save on average about 200 gallons per day by simply fixing a leaky toilet.
  • Laundry - The average American household consumes more than 20 percent of its annual water supply in washing some 300 loads of laundry. Simple steps to reduce include never washing less than a full load and not using the permanent press cycle (saving the 5 gallons used on the extra rinse). Better yet, replace your old model with a high-efficiency Energy Star® -certified washer. By doing this, your water-conserving new appliance can cut water usage by as much as 50 percent (and save energy in operation by a similar amount). 
  • Showers - The average American family of 4 uses about 40 gallons of water daily when showering. This accounts for some 17 percent of household water consumption. The installation of a low-flow faucet can reduce water volume from an average of between about 5 and 10 gallons per minute to less than 2.5 gallons.
  • Faucets and sinks - Bathroom faucets run at the rate of 2 gallons a minute, so you can save plenty by not running the water constantly while brushing your teeth. And a leaky faucet can waste 20 gallons a day.
  • Dishwashing - It might not be intuitive, but automatic dishwashers actually use less water than washing by hand. Even than – dishwashing consumes some 5,000 gallons a year. There are various things you can do to minimize water waste. Only run full loads, and dry scrape rather than rinsing dishes whenever possible before loading. And avoid letting the sink water run continuously while cleaning up in the kitchen.

While a few of the tips offered involve an investment of a new appliances or equipment, most just require new ways of thinking. Do things just a little bit different and you and your family can contribute to the protection of the planet. As a bonus, you might also noticeably reduce your water bill. 

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