Here @ Home shares water conservation tips

Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 4:22 PM EDT
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(WDBJ) - Here @ Home is sharing some tips from the Western Virginia Water Authority on water conservation.

Even though we are not in a drought status in our part of Virginia, it is always important to use water wisely, says the utility, which says saving water helps conserve this important natural resource and can help save you money.

As we enter the fall planting season, we sat down with Sarah Baumgardner, Director of Public Relations at the water authority, to share some water-wise tips for your garden and a few that can help save water in your home, as well.

Outside tips

Water when it is cool outside: Water your lawn or garden before 10am or after 7pm when temperatures are cooler to minimize evaporation. You want the water to soak into the ground – not get evaporated to the clouds!

Don’t overwater your lawn: If you water your lawn (or other plants outdoors), it only needs 1 to 1.5 inches of water every week or two. To measure one inch of water, set an empty tuna can on your lawn in the area where you are running a sprinkler. When it is full, you have watered one inch.

Buy plants that are native to our area: Plants that are native to our area are already acclimated to our area. They don’t require as much water and they resist a lot of pests.

Install a rain barrel: A rain barrel can collect rainwater or air conditioning condensate to use for plant and garden watering when the weather gets dry. You can build your own rain barrel or buy a barrel with a faucet already attached.

Indoor Tips

Fix toilet leaks: Because toilet leaks are the most common cause of leaks and increased in-door water consumption, you should check your toilet regularly. Every six months when you re-set your clocks for the time change, check your toilet for leaks and change your smoke detector batteries. To check to see if you have a toilet leak, put some food coloring in your toilet tank. The next morning, if the color shows up in the bowl without flushing, you have a leak. A leaky toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water per day or 6,000 gallons a month.

Fix leaks in faucets and outside spigots: At one drip per second, a faucet can leak 3,000 gallons of water per year. Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth: While brushing your teeth, turn off the water and save up to two gallons of water. The faucet doesn’t need to be running to get your teeth clean!

Shorten your showers: Shorten your shower to five minutes to save water as well as the energy you use to heat the water. Install flow restricting shower heads to reduce overall consumption.

Collect your shower warm-up water: If you shower is not located near your water heater, you may have to run your water for a few minutes to get it hot. Put a 5-gallon bucket in the shower to collect that warm-up water. You can use that water-to-water plants, fill a humidifier, give to your dog or even to flush your toilet.