Thinking about conservation now
Thursday, February 20, 2003
- Fix leaky faucets and toilets. Check your toilet for leaks by placing a few drops of food coloring in the tank. After a few minutes, if you see color in the bowl, you have a leak, perhaps caused by a faulty stopper.
- Fill a small plastic bottle (for example a one-liter ounce soda container) with water and put it in the corner of the toilet tank to displace water so that less water is used with each flush. Do not use a brick that might disintegrate and cause problems. This tip may not work with some low-flow toilets.
- Use the trashcan to dispose of trash instead of the toilet.
- Shorten the length of your showers. A five-minute shower can use between 15 to 40 gallons of water. A full bath can use even more water. In the shower, consider turning off the water after getting wet; turning on after lathering up; and back off again after rinsing. Repeat when washing your hair.
- Operate washing machines and dishwashers only when full.
- Do not rinse dishes before washing. Just remove large particles of food, and put the soiled dishes in the dishwasher.
- Kitchen sink disposals require lots of water to operate properly. Compost the food waste instead, or simply dispose of food in the garbage.
- Store a pitcher of water in the refrigerator so it will be cold and ready to drink.
- Turn off the faucet when you are not using the water. Don't leave the water running while brushing your teeth or shaving, or washing dishes in the sink.
- Reuse clean household water. Collect water wasted while waiting for hot water to reach the faucet or showerhead. Use this to water your houseplants or outdoor planters. Do the same with water that is used to boil eggs or steam vegetables.