In the midst of the state-wide drought, residents of California have been mandated to follow water restrictions. Reducing water use means making significant changes in your everyday habits and routine, but it can also mean substantial savings on water, sewage and energy bills for homeowners association residents.
In fact, you can reduce your water consumption by 20 to 40 percent without purchasing expensive equipment. The following suggestions will help you get in the habit of saving water indoors at home.
In the Kitchen
- Avoid the garbage disposal. It uses a lot of unnecessary water and can lead to problems with septic systems. Start a compost pile instead!
- Run automatic dishwashers only with a full load.
- When washing dishes in the sink, use one side of the sink or a large bowl for rinsing, rather than running water.
- Keep a container of water in the refrigerator for cold drinks. If you have to run your tap while waiting for cold water, collect running water in a pitcher for later use.
In the Bathroom
- Conventional toilets use about five to seven gallons of water per flush. Water used for each flush can be reduced by placing two half-gallon plastic bottles filled with water in the tank.
- Install a low-flow aerator on your showerhead and sink. These devices can be purchased at a hardware store and are easy to install. They can reduce water use to approximately 1 gallon per minute without sacrificing performance.
- Turn off tap water while brushing your teeth or shaving.
- Take shorter showers. During droughts, turn off water while soaping up.
California Water Service Company offers single-family residential customers conservation kits featuring a range of water-saving plumbing retrofit fixtures. These kits are available at no charge to help make conserving water that much easier and include:
- Two high-efficiency showerheads (use 2 gallons per minute [gpm])
- One hose nozzle
- Two bathroom faucet aerators (use 1.0 gpm)
- Toilet leak tablets
- One kitchen faucet aerator (uses 1.5 gpm)
It’s important for homeowners in the Association to remember that, when you use less water, you are also using less energy, leading to even greater savings for you and for your homeowners association.