Before you tackle water conservation in your household, you should understand where waste happens in the home. Here are a few national water waste stats:
- The average family can waste 180 gallons per week, or 9,400 gallons of water annually, from household leaks. That's equivalent to the amount of water needed to wash more than 300 loads of laundry.
- Household leaks can waste approximately nearly 900 billion gallons of water annually nationwide. That's equal to the annual household water use of nearly 11 million homes.
- Letting your faucet run for five minutes while washing dishes can waste 10 gallons of water and uses enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for 18 hours.
What you can do to conserve
Turn off the tap whenever possible, like while you brush your teeth, or between rinsing dishes. Thoroughly scraping your dishes can mean less scrubbing and as a result, less water used.
Take short showers, not baths. Baths use as much as 7 times more water. Taking showers under five minutes can reduce your water waste even more.
Find and fix leaks. Leaks can waste hundreds of gallons. To check your toilet for a leak, place colored dye in the tank above the bowl, and see if it appears in the bowl without flushing the toilet. If so ,your toilet has a leak which needs to be fixed.
Water conservation information
- Water Use Calculator (Home Water Works)
- Water Conservation at Home (Improvenet)
- Water Conservation Toolbox: Residents (Metropolitan Council)
- Residential Water Conservation Information (American Water Works Association - AWWA)
- Water Conservation - Resource Community (American Water Works Association)
- WaterSense Program (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)
- Water Efficiency and Sustainable Use (Alliance for Water Efficiency)