It’s raining now and then, and in all likelihood you have forgotten how difficult was to get water during last dry summer, in Bengaluru. However, those days are not to be forgotten, as Bengaluru is already drawing excess water from Cauvery river, and problems are bound to be there even in future. Every drop you save today will help you tomorrow.
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Here are 21 ways to conserve water at home/ apartment. These tips have been shared by our reader, Anup Jose A.
1. Fix the leaks. Whether you do it yourself or hire a plumber, fixing leaky faucets can mean big water savings. Did you know – a leak of one drop per second wastes more than 25 litres of water a day – that’s about 10,000 litres of water a year!!
2. Understand your water usage statistics. At the end of each month, share your water usage with family members. Encourage family members to look over these statistics and aim to use less water this month than they did in the one before.
3. Convert your existing taps into water efficient taps by using low flow water aerators. These aerators are easy to install and give very quick payback. We can achieve up to 80% reduction in water wastage with the help of this device.
4. Install water-saving aerator shower to conserve water on bathing. A regular shower dispenses 15 to 20 litres water per minute. But a shower fitted with water-saving shower uses 50% less water, but gives same efficiency. You waste less water, you recycle less water and save money too.
5. Adopt rainwater harvesting. Do not let water run into city drain lines. Let the soil absorb water. Bore well recharge is a must for all sites above 30X40 in Bangalore, however it doesn’t hurt if rainwater is harvested in smaller sites or houses.
6. Take shorter showers. One way to cut down on water use is to turn off the shower after soaping up, then turn it back on to rinse. Do you know a ten-minute shower uses approximately 150 to 200 litres of water? You can also use bucket. Bucket bath needs 20 litres water only. You can also have an option of buying low flow showers.
7. Use your washing machine for only full loads. Automatic clothe washers should be fully loaded for optimum water conservation. For partial loads, adjust water levels to match the size of the load. Replace old machines. New Energy Star rated washers use 35 – 50% less water and 50% less energy per load. If you’re in the market for a new machine, consider buying a water-saving front load washer.
8. Wash fruits and vegetable in a vessel instead of rinsing it directly by tap. The water could be reused for the planter or garden at home.
9. Turn off the water after you wet your toothbrush. There is no need to keep the water running while brushing your teeth. Just wet your brush and fill a glass for mouth rinsing.
10. Water during the early parts of the day; avoid watering when it is windy. Early morning is generally better than dusk since it helps prevent the growth of fungus. Early watering, and late watering, also reduces water loss to evaporation. Watering early in the day is also the best defence against slugs and other garden pests. Try not to water when it’s windy – wind can blow sprinklers off target and speed evaporation.
11. Use broom more, not a hose, to clean driveways and sidewalks
12. Don’t run the hose while washing your car. Clean the car using a pail of soapy water. Use the hose only for rinsing. You will consume 80% less water.
13. Plant drought-resistant shrubs and plants or native plants. Many beautiful shrubs and plants thrive with far less watering than other species. Replace herbaceous perennial borders with native plants.
14. Install a water meter to keep accurate track of water consumption. Set target to reduce the water utility bill month on month basis.
15. Practice to store rainwater in sump or tank. It’s free and is purest form of water.
16. Report any water leaks to your building manager immediately. It will result in substantial saving.
17. Use low flow flushing or water efficient flushing system to conserve water in toilet. A old flushing system uses more than 12 litres water in each flush, whereas a water-efficient flushing system uses four litres water in full flush.
18. Apartment with large number of flats should have dedicated manager on Water. Call him ‘Water Manager.’ The manager is responsible to do regular checks on leaks and other water related appliances.
19. Hand-washing a lot of dishes? Fill up your sink with water, instead of letting it run the whole time that you’re scrubbing.
20. Don’t use extra detergent in washing clothes. Rinsing will require more water.
21. Conduct periodic knowledge sessions on water facts, scarcity and conservation. Continuous learning is required to bring awareness on water conservation.