Water Conservation Tips
As our population increases, so does our demand for water. Over the past fifty years, the U.S. population nearly doubled, however, the demand for water more than tripled. The average Pennsylvanian now uses 70 gallons of water per day, which is about 700 million gallons statewide. According to the EPA, a 2003 US General Accounting Office survey indicated that at least 36 states anticipate local, regional, or statewide water shortages by the year 2013. Simple steps can be taken to use water more efficiently, which will help to preserve future water supplies, save money, and help protect the environment. Below are some ways that you can help conserve and recycle water everyday around your home.
Indoor Water Tips
- Use your garbage disposal sparingly, which requires a constant stream of running water. Instead, compost vegetable food waste.
- Shorten the length of your shower by one to two minutes, and you can save up to 150 gallons of water per month!
- Think your toilet may be leaking? Put food coloring into your toilet tank. If it finds its way into your toilet bowl without flushing, you have a leak. Fixing this can save up to 1,000 gallons of water each month! When time to replace, consider a water efficient tank.
- Turn off the water while you brush your teeth and you can save up to 25 gallons of water per month.
- Consider installing an instant water heater so that you don't have to run the water to make it hot. (This will also reduce your energy costs)
- When you stay in a hotel, request to reuse your towels and linens.
Water use in our homes
Outdoor Water Tips
- Spread a layer of mulch around plants to retain moisture and save water, time and money.
- Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting. By having a taller lawn, the grass will shade its roots and retain soil moisture better than if it were cut closer to the ground.
- Collect rain water from your downspouts into rain barrels and then use that water supply to water your garden.
- When you wash your car, go to a commercial car wash that recycles its water.
- Aerate your lawn annually so that water can more easily reach roots.
- Let your lawn go dormant during the summer. Dormant grass only needs water every three weeks or less if it rains.
- Plant native grasses, ground covers, shrubs and trees. Once they are well established, they will not require watering as frequently, and should be able to survive dry periods without watering.