Earth Day 2012 Water Conservation Tips Save Money


Earth Day 22 April is the perfect moment to take several simple steps which consumers can take to help conserve the water supply and lower monthly water and sewer bills while helping the environment, respecting and protecting our drinking water supply. “Earth Day 2012 reminds us of the essential role we each play in respecting and protecting our drinking water supply,” according to Environmental Plumbing Consultant  Ricky Jones of Plumbing Parts Depot® a leading plumbing supply warehouse distributor in New York City. Water your lawn early in the morning or at night to avoid excess evaporation. Do not over water your lawn. Fully load the dishwasher and clothes washer before running. Defrost frozen food in the refrigerator or in the microwave instead of running hot water over the food. When washing dishes by hand, do not let the water run. Use a broom, rather than a hose, to clean sidewalks and driveways. If you have a swimming pool, use a cover. You will cut the loss of water by evaporation by 90 percent. Repair dripping faucets and leaky toilets. Dripping faucets can waste up to two thousand gallons of water each year in the average home. Leaky toilets can waste as much as two hundred gallons per day. Do not leave the sink running while you brush your teeth.  Check faucets for drips or leaks. Make repairs to save water. Check toilets for hidden leaks. Add six drops of food coloring to the toilet tank.  If the toilet is leaking, color will appear in the bowl within 30 minutes. Inspect tank and bowl for cracks or leaks. Make sure toilets flush properly.  If the handle must be held down for a thorough flush or jiggled to stop the water from running, you may need to replace worn tank parts. They’re inexpensive and you’ll notice a lower water bill from eliminating the running water. Consider a dual-flush converter for older toilets, which saves water with four out of five flushes since a full flush isn’t needed most of the time. An easy and chemical-free way to clean mineral deposits from the showerhead, vinegar.  Unscrew it and soak in vinegar or fill a plastic baggie with vinegar; place it over the showerhead and hold in place with a rubber band.  Soak overnight then remove and gently scrub with an old toothbrush to remove deposits. Showerheads also have retrofit options for maximum water pressure and high-efficiency options. Check the temperature setting on the water heater.  It should be set no higher than 120° F to prevent scalding and reduce energy use. Carefully drain several gallons from the water heater tank to flush out corrosion causing sediment, which reduces heating efficiency and shortens the life of the heater. Consider replacing a water heater more than 15 years old with a newer, more energy efficient model. Life expectancy for water heaters is only 11 years so if yours is older, you’re on borrowed time. Check dishwasher, washing machine and icemaker supply hoses for bulges or leaks, yet another source of waste and inefficiency. Replace hoses showing signs of weakness or older than ten years. Stay away from environmentally unfriendly, quick-fix drain solutions and instead make drain maintenance a monthly habit by utilizing a nontoxic bio-based pipe shield product. Clean out washing machine lint trap, if equipped. You can reutilize an old pair of pantyhose to replace a wire trap over the end of the hose that drains the washer. Check exposed pipes under sinks and in the basement for signs of leaks. If your home has a sump pump, make sure it operates properly by pouring a few buckets of water into the sump pit. The pump should quickly turn on, discharge the water then shut off without any problems. In the case that you need to replace, energy-efficient models are available. Install a backflow valve in the floor drain if you live in an area where sewers sometimes back up into homes. This device will prevent future backups which wreak havoc on your home environment, are hazardous to health and require harsh cleaning agents to remedy. Inspect for slow leaks in your home by taking a reading on your water meter before bedtime. The next morning, without using any water overnight, take another reading.  If the reading has changed you have a leak that should be repaired. Install flood alarms. Like a smoke alarm, a flood alarm is an inexpensive battery-operated device that sounds an alarm when it comes in contact with water. It alerts you to potential flooding or leaks. Make sure yard drains, gutters and downspouts are cleaned out, open, and free of debris. Check for bird nests in plumbing vent pipes. Check faucets and hose bibs to make sure water flows freely.  If an outdoor faucet drips or if there is leakage inside your home the first time the hose is turned on for the season, you may have had a frozen pipe that cracked and needs to be replaced. Install inexpensive aerators on all of your faucets for water and water bill savings. “We are all stewards of the water we drink and use for other purposes,” Jones  said. “By taking these simple steps, we can feel confident that we are doing our part. Do not wait a week to fix that leak Plumbing Parts Depot has the devices to stop leaks and make you environment friendly.”

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire


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