I am a bit of a nerd, and in high school I read some of the Dune books by Frank Herbert. He wrote about a people that he invented called the Fremen, who lived on a desert planet. These people took water conservation to the extreme, with body suits that recycled every single bit of water that the body put out. They also would recycle the water present in someone’s body after they died. (Ew, I know.) While this level of water conservation is ridiculously extreme for our planet, I always think of them when I think of conserving water.
It is said that each person uses around 50 to 70 gallons of water every day – this is not including things like laundry, dishes, and other common tasks that use water. Water is a renewable resource, but it takes time to build back up, so while we do not have to go to such extreme measures as the Fremen to conserve water, incorporating these easy ways to save a little water into our daily lives could make a big difference in the event of a shortage or emergency situation.
Fix That Leaky Sink!
One of the easiest ways to eliminate water waste is to make sure that every pipe and water faucet in your home is leak free. Obviously, if there are pools of water around sinks, they are leaky – but there can be hidden leaks as well. Often pipes in walls and under the house can have leaks that go unnoticed. Don’t forget to check out the toilet – if you have a poor seal in the tank, your toilet will run continually, which is a huge water waster.
You can find showerheads designed to use less water in almost any general supply store, or hardware store. These inexpensive attachments can conserve more water than you might realize, and an added benefit to this practice is that your monthly water bill will become less as well.
“I Never Let the Water Run”
A constantly-running faucet can waste hundreds of gallons of water, so teach children to turn of the faucet when brushing their teeth. Consider having your kids take baths, rather than showers – this can save even more water!
Grey Water for Plants… They Won’t Mind!
There are many tasks in the home that result in dirty water, such as washing dishes, mopping, or bathing. Usually, we just let this water drain out of the sink – what a waste! Instead, use this grey water is to water plants and grass – as long as there are no chemicals in the water, your greenery won’t mind a bit.
Nix the Dishwasher
Dishwashers use up a lot of water – they sometimes use up to three different batches of water to wash one load of dishes! By contrast, washing dishes in the sink by hand can save a lot of water. If you absolutely cannot stand the idea of washing dishes in the sink, then consider installing a dishwasher that saves as much water as possible.
Wash Cars By the Bucket
Instead of washing the car by spraying it with a hose, use buckets of water instead – all it takes is one bucket of soapy water, and 1-2 buckets of water to rinse, but you’ll save gallons of water in the process.
Wash Larger Loads of Clothes
Wash larger loads of clothes, rather than 2-3 smaller loads – this will cut down on a lot of water waste.
Reducing Water Usage
In the event of an emergency, water shortage, drought, or even if you’re just trying to save money, conserving water is a great way to stretch out your supplies. Make sure that all of your household tasks are as water-efficient as possible, and you’ll be surprised at how much less water you use.
Photos by MoriahBecks. Used with permision.