Since Indiana (and many other parts of the U.S.) are suffering historic drought in 2012, I thought it appropriate to revisit the issue of water conservation. Not only does water conservation save money if you’re on a public utility, but it also protects public safety.
Reuse shower water.
Most of us turn on the shower and let the water run while it warms up. If you have the forethought to put a bucket in the shower before you’re ready to step in, you can catch a decent amount of water that can be used for plants and animals.
Reuse water from the kitchen.
If you steam or boil veggies (without salt) and you don’t consume that left-over water, water your compost bin/pile or your garden with that nutrient-rich water. And don’t forget to rinse produce in a basin instead of under running water. You’ll use much less water that way, and you can reuse that water for animals and the garden as well.
Use the toilet with water conservation in mind.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t flush your toilet (although I’m sure some folks use that technique to conserve water), but there are a lot of things we can do to make water go further when it comes to toilet flushing.
Personally, I’m in love with my dual flush toilet. It uses mush less water for a liquids flush than it does for a solids flush. Since solids flushes happen much less often, you end up saving a lot of water, and we’ve noticed the difference. They even make conversion kits so you can convert a standard toilet to a dual flush toilet. Having the benefits of the water savings without spending anywhere from $100 – $300 on a toilet is a nice bonus.
Also, don’t forget that your toilet isn’t a trash can. I know a lot of folks who flush things down the toilet rather than throwing them in the trash — everything from food to hair to diapers and cat litter and more. Since I have a septic system, it wouldn’t occur to me to do that, but you can save a lot of water if you simply dispose of things properly.
And lastly, if you can’t afford to convert your toilets to a dual flush setup, you can add a small brick or a bag or jug filled with sand to the tanks of your old toilets. This displacement means that your toilet will use less water when it flushes, and it can definitely add up, especially if you have older toilets that use more water with each flush.
Little changes add up to big savings.
Don’t allow yourself to think that little changes don’t matter. The “experts” suggest things like aerators, turning off the water when you brush your teeth or shave, and using a dishwasher rather than washing dishes by hand. It all adds up to save you money, and most of these ideas don’t take much effort on our part. Saving money’s a great way to help your family claim liberty both today and further down the line, so join the walk! We’re a friendly bunch.