The plumbing system in your home handles a massive amount of water over time. Many families wanting to go green are looking closely at that amount, and searching for solutions that save water and cut down on the water bills. Hire an experienced plumber to help you upgrade the current system, install new water saving plumbing fixtures and design any additions and renovations to reach your water conservation goals this year.
High Efficiency Toilets
If your bathroom is not fitted with a low-flow toilet make that your first plumbing upgrade. High efficiency toilets use less than half the water of a traditional design - 6 liters as opposed to 13.2 liters. Figures state that the average family home will save over 80 liters of water each year by replacing older toilets with a new low-flow model.
Have the plumber replace every toilet in the house on the same visit, saving you money on travel costs and labor charges. In fact, any time you hire a plumber it's more efficient to have them complete as many small jobs as possible in one visit.
Some homeowners opt for a dual flush toilet, which provides the option of using even less water than typical low-flow models. Many dual flush toilets offer a choice between 4L and 6L flushes, reducing your water usage by even greater amounts than the option outlined above. Dual flush toilets generally cost more than typical low-flow models, but the money saved over time will help offset that added cost.
Shower Heads, Sink Taps and Tub Faucets
Bathroom fixtures like faucets, taps and shower heads waste water on a regular basis. And for a fairly small investment your plumber can install new fixtures that use less water while providing the same level of comfort and coverage.
A standard shower head handles about 9.5 liters of water per minute, or 95 liters in a typical ten minute shower. Install a new water saving shower head and cut that amount to around 7.6 liters each minute, or 76 liters over that typical shower. You can imagine the savings on your water bill when each person in your home saves 19 liters of water for every shower.
New shower head designs provide excellent coverage and will not affect water pressure, allowing you to enjoy the same comfortable experience and still cut down on water usage. You may even consider upgrading to a luxurious rainfall shower head with built in flow restrictor. These fixtures provide soothing coverage spread across a wide diameter, mimicking a gentle rain shower in your bathroom.
Tub faucets and standard sink taps can be easily fitted with an aerator - you don't even need to call the plumber for this job. Look for a part that fits with your current faucet and follow the installation instructions included. Otherwise you can upgrade the bathtub tabs and sink faucets to cut down water usage by around 30 percent. Current data suggests that homeowners will reduce their average water consumption by 10 to 13 liters per day by installing faucet aerators.
Bathtub Remodel and Sink Replacement
Bathroom trends in the past called for a large soaker tub and standalone shower. While this design evokes a feeling of luxury, it also contributes to massive amounts of wasted water. Think about how often you use the soaker tub, and how much of that water is actually needed. While a large tub creates a sense of indulgence, a smaller tub with the right design can create the same feeling without requiring as much water to fill. Soak in a smaller tub and save money on your water bills. Use the extra space to add storage or build out around the new tub with tiling to create an impressive focal point.
Take a look at your bathroom sink as well, and consider whether a smaller vessel would work. Installing a smaller sink may not save as much water, but every little bit adds up over time. And a smaller model may allow for double sinks in the existing vanity space - a must have for any master ensuite or family bathroom. Be sure that both sinks are equipped with aerated faucets for water conservation and good quality drain plugs to avoid leaks.
Repair Leaks Quickly
Plumbing leaks waste enormous amounts of water, especially when they are left alone for a long period of time. Save yourself major headaches, and massive water bills, by hiring a plumber to repair leaks as soon as they are detected.
Burst pipes and leaky fixtures damage your home as well, costing you thousands of dollars in repairs and replacement. Be proactive about your plumbing and have a qualified professional perform inspections and tackle repairs before a major plumbing issue occurs.
Your sewer line and hot water tank should be inspected on a regular basis, with proper maintenance performed when necessary. Taps, fixtures, hose bibs and drains should also be part of a whole home plumbing inspection to detect potential leaks and find sources of wasted water. Invest in your plumbing system to save money and save water far into the future.
If your family relies on a well located on your own property, consider the value of installing a solar powered well pump. This will not affect water usage, but does provide a dependable water source all year round, even during a power outage. Using solar energy saves money on your electricity bill as well, and having this reliable water source saves you plenty of hassles buying and storing bottled water for emergencies.
A professional plumber can help you reduce water consumption and save money on monthly water bills. As water and sewer costs continue to climb and our impact on the environment is better understood, water conservation becomes more important for the average Canadian family. Hire a plumber to upgrade your toilets, shower heads, sink and tub taps. Consider installing a smaller bathtub and have the plumbing system inspected for leaks. Be proactive and reap the benefits of saving water today.