Lower Your Utility Bills – Part 2: Water – Strategies to Stop the Money Leak
|August 25, 2014||Filled under Frugal Tips and Tricks|
Welcome to part 2 of our series on how to lower your utility bills – water!
We are all guilty of letting the water run while we do dishes or brush our teeth. It is easy not to think about it. We do, however, realize the importance of turning off that faucet when the bill actually comes. Let’s take a look at a few small changes that will help you save money on your water bill today.
Sprinklers need to be used wisely. It may not be practical to stop watering altogether, but some well-planned watering techniques will reduce the water usage. Grass is meant to be tough. It is engineered to be drought-resistant. Keep this in mind when you plan how long you want to water your lawn.
Planning is the name of the game when it comes to watering your lawn, flowers, and landscaping. If you water at mid-day when the hot sun can burn off the water, you won’t get a good soak in the roots. Watering during the night or before dawn will give you a much deeper saturation.
Soaking hoses may be more efficient for flowers and foundation plants. Rather than sprinkling your siding or fences, the water is leaked out into the soil through holes in the soaking hoses. Thread these soakers around your gardens, cover with mulch, and the water you use will get to the plant roots and stay there, rather than disappear into thin air.
Leaky Faucet Fix
That ‘drip drip drip’ is more than just irritating, it could be costing you a bundle of money. In fact, a leaky faucet can waste thousands of gallons of water a year. Do a little research on YouTube, the DIY channel, or at the library to find simple fixes for leaky faucets. More often than not, all it takes is a new rubber gasket or some plumber’s tape.
If a faucet is worn out, it will still save you money in the long run to replace it entirely. But, you don’t have to hire a plumber for a simple job. Measure the distance between the cold water and hot water inserts, draw a sketch, and take it to your home improvement store. You’ll find helpful people who know their business. All you have to do is ask. However, if you absolutely don’t know the difference between a wrench and a screwdriver, you may come out better by hiring a professional. Even after paying the fee, the savings will still be worth it in the end.
Embrace the Low Flow
You may have resisted this money-saver in the past, but you need to embrace low flow plumbing fixtures in order to keep your water bill under control. Fortunately, the modern low flow fixtures have been improved. For instance, even though a low flow shower head sprays only 2.5 gallons a minute, the water flow is enhanced by aerating it to increase pressure.
Replacing an old toilet with a new low flow toilet can be another option. Even though the old low flow models have taken some hits in popularity, the newer models have addressed those concerns. Now, a unique feature allows the user to choose between a 3.5 gallon flush and a 1.6 gallon flush. This choice just makes sense.
Every time you turn on the faucet or flush the toilet, imagine the water as coins, pouring down the drain, because that’s exactly what it is. When you’re laying in bed listening to that faucet drip, drip, drip, it’s spending your hard earned money for you. With a bit of know how and common sense, you can stop the money leak in your house and save big money.
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