After moving into my new house last year, one of the biggest surprises was our new water bill.
Though the size was about the same as my old condo, somehow the water bill was nearly double.
After some investigation, I realized that — especially if you live in an older house — tons of “little” issues can affect how efficiently water is used in your home.
If you live in the desert like me (I’m in SoCal), then these small issues add up (and affect the environment as well).
Below are a few articles that I used to root out many of the problems in my own home.
Hopefully you can use the tips below and save a little money, do a little extra for the environment, and take a step toward a more earth friendly home.
100 Ways to Conserve
Being eco-friendly is a hot topic right now and with more people than ever before working to make a difference.
One way is by conserving water. Conserving water does not have to be a tedious task and can be as simple as turning off the faucet when lathering while washing your hands.
Other helpful ways to conserve water can start with your garden and outdoor landscaping choices. For example, using organic mulch around your plants helps retain water so you don’t have to water as often. Another way is to use Bermuda grass which only needs to be watered once a month.
A rain barrel is a simple, effective way to water your lawn/garden
Similar to a carbon footprint, everyone is responsible for managing and minimizing their water footprint.
When it comes to a water footprint it is important to keep in mind that this is not just the amount of water wasted inside and outside of the house but the water footprint is also left through waste, such as small habits and lifestyle choices that lead to products that waste water.
Water can be saved through small efforts such as not flushing the toilet using the “yellow mellow” method — and minimizing water use to the very last drop, such as utilizing a rain barrel.
Food choice can affect water consumption more than anything else
How Australians Are Surviving Drought
Australia is currently experiencing a drought and the biggest factor is water waste caused by agriculture and commercial use.
Drinking water has now become rationed and if the water shortage does not fix itself, Australia will have to move to more restrictions for further conservation.
There are also many other ways to help the water problem.
This can be as simple as taking shorter showers, or as sacrificial as not showering at all. Other efforts include less laundry loads, less gardening, reusing water from showers for plants, and one can even invest in a grey water system.
Large cities are having record low water-storage levels all over the world
Green Global Travel put together an interesting guide that basically walks you through the different rooms of your house, providing ideas/tips for saving water in each.
I found this article especially helpful, since I used it as a checklist for making sure I was following all the simple practices in my own home.
This article is a bit different, as it discusses ways to save water in the context of agriculture. The article talks about an approach to farming that doesn’t rely on the traditional chemicals to increase yields.
Instead, farmers use prairie “strips” or sections of natural vegetation to trap runoff water and filter out chemical runoff.