It’s no secret that you can’t live without water, but your budget can dehydrate with high water bills sucking it dry. If you aren’t smart about your water usage habits, you’ll watch some of your cash going down the drain unnecessarily. People work many hours a month just to pay their water bills. Instead of misusing your precious hours, consider educating yourself and becoming savvy about your water usage.
1. Replace Thirsty Appliances
The first step to lowering the numbers on your water bills is to use efficient appliances. Old appliances use a lot of water because they were not designed with efficiency in mind. For instance, when buying a washer, check out the labels indicating its efficiency. Look out for WaterSense and ENERGY STAR stickers. You’ll find them on equipment that uses up to 50% less water and 50% less electricity. You may also want to buy a front-loading washer because it uses significantly less water than a top-loading type.
2. Repair Leaks
You should investigate the integrity of your water lines thoroughly to identify leaks. You shouldn’t underestimate those drips. They can lead to substantial water losses and might even be the reason why your water bill is always high. Water dripping from a faucet may look harmless, but continuous dripping can contribute to significant water losses. If you allow a tap to leak for a year, it might cost you as much as a week’s worth of your household’s water bill. First, identify the cause of water leaks. While you can fix some easily, complicated leaks require a plumbing expert. When you realize you need professional assistance in Sacramento, Los Molinos or Northern California, turn to Gallagher's Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning.
3. Only Use the Washing Machine When It’s Full
Reduce your water bills by either waiting for the dirty laundry to pile up or sharing a load with others. Even though there is a half load button on your machine, it would consume half the water used in a full load. So, why not fill it up? It’s all right to wash light-colored and dark-colored clothes together at a low temperature as long as the detergent you use supports the practice. With that in mind, you don’t have a reason not to fill up the machine. The only exception is new dark-colored clothes because the dye might run during the first wash. For items like inner-wear, bedding and towels, use high temperatures to sanitize them.
4. Exercise Creativity When Flushing
Every toilet flush goes down with a significant amount of money. Unfortunately, there is no way around this because you must flush after every use; otherwise, your house will become less pleasant. Every time you flush the toilet, the system uses all the water inside the tank. For a four-person household, this could easily translate to at least 12 toilet tank refills. If your tank has a capacity of five gallons, that would be 60 gallons daily. A creative way of minimizing toilet usage is to tweak the tank to hold less water. Put a bottle filled with water inside the tank. That way, you save an equivalent amount of the water in the bottle on every flush.
5. Collect Rainwater
An effective way of reducing the water bill is to collect rainwater. All you need to do is install the right tools, and you’ll then have some free water to use for a while. Your savings will depend on the amount of water you collect. Harvesting your rainwater can help cut the bill significantly. If there isn’t enough rainfall in your area, the savings will be minimal, but people living in regions with high rainfall can realize huge savings.
6. Avoid Washing Cars at Home
Many people are under the impression that cleaning their vehicle on their own property is cheaper than driving to a car wash. Unfortunately, by washing the car at home, you might spend more than you realize on the water bill. If you leave the hose running while you scrub the car, you will increase your expenditure. A commercial car wash only uses 30 gallons of water. If you run water from start to finish, you will have used more than that by the four-minute mark. You’ll also have to pay for cleaning supplies. If you still want to wash your car at home, consider using a water bucket and sponge to minimize the expenses.
7. Always Use a Dishwasher
Dishwashers are easier on water consumption than manual washing techniques. Just like the washing machine, you should only use the dishwasher if it is a full load. If you run it when it’s only filled halfway, you might end up using more energy and more water than you would while washing the dishes by hand.
8. Use A Washing Bowl Instead of Running Water
If you don’t have a dishwasher or if the dishes are too stained for the machine to handle, you may need to wash them by hand, but using running water to clean the dishes will produce a spike in your bill. Fill a basin with water and use it to clean the utensils. Since washing bowls are usually smaller than sinks, you will require less water to fill them up, which will help you save on your overall consumption. Ensure that you leave a small gap between the sink and container edges to rinse off dishes without contaminating the water in the bowl.
9. Embrace Native Landscaping
Modern landscaping adds to your home’s aesthetics, but it has a detrimental impact on water usage. Keeping your garden beautiful requires frequent watering of the grass and plants. You can minimize water consumption by reducing the frequency of watering the garden or by planting native, drought-resistant plants. Native plants have thrived for millennia. They don’t need much care to survive, and they require minimal watering. Ensure you direct water to the garden and not the sidewalks when watering your lawn.
10. Store Cold Water in The Fridge
Let’s say you want to drink water, but on running the tap, you realize that it’s not as cold as you wanted it to be. Most people waste more water to cool it, which results in significant losses over the long run. Consider storing a jug or bottle of cold water in the fridge all the time. That way, you will avoid wasting water every time you want a cool drink.
Bonus Tip: Consider Seasonal Changes
You are likely to use more water in the summer, which is why you should take more precautions during this season. The reason for this is that you undertake more activities in your yard during the warm weather. Consider watering your lawn in the mornings and evenings to avoid unnecessary water loss. Since you spend lots of time indoors during winter, there is a chance you will take longer showers in the summertime. You also don’t have to water your garden or fill up your pool during winter.
Turn to the Local Experts
If your water bill is straining your finances, contact Gallagher's Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning today to inspect your appliances and advise you on steps you could take to cut down the expense. Our qualified technicians and plumbers in Sacramento, Los Molinos, and throughout Northern California are happy to help regardless of an issue’s simplicity or complexity. We offer a full range of indoor air quality services as well as heating and cooling equipment installation, maintenance, and repair. Besides that, you can count on us for any plumbing needs, from a clogged drain to a broken sewer line. Call Gallagher's Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning today to discuss your concerns. We’re available 24/7 for emergency repairs.