How to save water

Saving water at home can benefit both your pocket and the environment.

Every case is different but the chart below can give you an idea on where the average household uses water the most and where to focus if your aim is to save water at home.

Proven ways to save water at home

In this page we are sharing the best tips and advice to save water at home and reduce the cots of your water bills.

Water saving tap aerator

Old faucet models run on average of around 15 liters of water per minute while a standard aerator can reduce the water usage to as little as 6 liters per minute. 

Water saving tap aerators can reduce the water consumption even further and due to their low cost and easy installation are most definitely a water saving method to have in consideration.

We have installed a water saving tap aerator to a bathroom tap and the results speak by themselves

Water saving tap aerator

Standard tap aerator

> Uses 1 liter of water every 6 seconds

> This is the equivalent to 10 liters per minute

> 10 liters per minute x 10 minutes = 100 liters of water per day

> 100 liters of water per day x 220 days per year = 22,000 liters of water per year

> 22,000 liters of water per year x 2 euro per cubic meter of water = 33 euro per year

Note: In Germany are around paying 2 euro per cubic meter of water. Depending on where you live the cost may be different.

Water saving tap aerator:

> Uses 1 liter of water every 15 seconds

> This is the equivalent to 3.8 liters per minute

> 3.8 liters per minute x 10 minutes = 38 liters of water per day

> 38 liters of water per day x 220 days per year = 8,360 liters of water per year

>8,360 liters of water per year x 2 euro per cubic meter of water = 16,72 euro per year

If you would like to easily calculate the water usage of your taps, click on the ‘water tap’ icon and use our online tap water usage calculator.

Tap water usage calculator icon
Faucet water calculator

If you would like to learn how to install a water saving tap aerator, have a look to the YouTube video we have made about this topic.

Install water saving tap aerator

Water flow control valve

We have measured our shower head water flow and found out that we are using 11 liters a minute, not as many liters as an old model but still far away from a low flow shower head.

We have both tried to reduce our water consumption by installing a low flow shower head and also a water flow reduction valve. 

The low flow shower head that we bought claimed to reduce the water consumption up to 30% and it has been a disappointment because we have achieved a water saving of only 1%. 

Instead, the flow reduction valve has significantly reduced our water consumption.

Shower water flow reduction valve

An old shower head delivers up to 19 liters per minute so for an 8 minutes shower:

>  The old shower head would use 152 liters a day

> Which at 30 showers per month would use 4,560 liters

> And 54,720 liters of water per year

> Assuming a cost of 2 euro per every cubic meter of water, this would mean a yearly cost of 109.44 euro.

A new shower head model delivers up to 9 liters per minute so for an 8 minutes shower:

>  The newer model shower head would use 72 liters a day

> Which at 30 showers per month would use 2,160 liters

> And 25,590 liters of water per year

> Assuming a cost of 2 euro per every cubic meter of water, this would mean a yearly cost of 51.18 euro.

If you would like to easily calculate the water usage of your shower head, click on the ‘shower head’ icon and use our online tap water usage calculator.

Shower water usage calculator icon
Shower water calculator

If you would like to learn how to install a flow reduction valve to your shower, have a look to this video below. 

Installing a reduction valve to our shower has greatly contributed to decreasing the water consumption in our bathroom.

How to install a shower water flow regulation valve

High efficiency toilet

Older toilet models use up to 15 liters per flush

> New toilet models use between 6 to 10 liters of water per flush

> High efficiency toilets can go below even 5 liters of water. 

Dual flush toilets use 6 liters of water for solid waster and only 3 liters for liquid waste.

For anyone thinking about if the investment is worth the consider, we have made some calculations that may be of help. 

Note that this calculations are only to be used as orientation and we encourage each individual to make its own assessment.

Toilet water usage

If you would like to easily calculate the water usage of your toilet, click on the ‘toilet’ icon and use our online toiler water usage calculator.

Toilet water usage calculator icon
Toilet water cost calculator

Toilet cistern water saving bags

For those who cannot afford to install a dual flush toilet, a toilet cistern water saving bad may be a more affordable option.
 
Still, we must warn everyone that we haven’t tested this water saving opportunity and our research shows that only around 50% of the people have given a positive review.
 
Until we have made our own tests, we consider this as a potential water saving opportunity that seems to work given some conditions like choosing the right water saving bag for a specific toilet and installing it correctly.

Find water leaks

Every so often we come across the news that someone we know has got a disproportionate water bill which it was due to a major water leak that went unnoticed for a few months.

But it also may be the case of small water leaks go unnoticed for very long periods, even years, which are draining our pockets at a steady rate so we do not notice, unless we check.

A damaged pipe losing one drop of water per second would mean:

> An additional water usage of 8.6 liters per day or 0,15 euro

> Or an additional water usage of 258 liters per month or 0,5 euro

>Or an additional water usage of 3,319 liters per year or 6,2 euro

Note that we live in Germany so for our calculations we are assuming a water cost of 2 euro per cubic meter of water.

The simplest way to check for a water leak is to just check at the water meter:

1.- Stop using all water

2.- Record the number on the water meter

3.- Wait for a minimum of five hours (maybe during the night)

4.- Check again the water meter

Water meter

For visual help, you may want to watch this video where we explain how to read a water meter.

How to read a water meter

Water efficient home appliances

Nowadays it is not that expensive to buy water efficient appliances, like dishwashers or washing machines, that use much less water than older appliances. 

Still, it is proven that for getting the most from our energy efficient appliances we must use them correctly.

We have put our own home appliances to the test and compared the results between using an standard program or the ‘ Eco’ program. 

Out of our tests, we have noticed than we use the ‘Eco’ programs the cycles take much longer, well over three hours, but we are saving both in electricity and water.

Washing machine ECO function button
Dishwasher eco function

Now, the question here is if it is worth to wait for over three hours for the dishwasher or the washing machine to finish one single cycle?

Well, it depends on the perspective. Even if you only use once your dishwasher and washing machine per week you will still be saving water, maybe only eight liters but if we multiply that value for thousands of households the number quickly increases to significant numbers.

Standard Vs Eco cycles

For those of us who use the dishwasher and washing machines around 5 times per week, we are already speaking about saving 40 liters of water every week and around 1600 liters of water every year.

From the economic perspective, for those of us who pay 2 euro per cubic meter, 1600 liters only amount to save 2,5 euros per year. But from the environmental impact perspective, if we multiply 1600 liters by thousands of households, using the ‘Eco’ function really makes a big impact into reducing water usage.

In our house, we always use the ‘Eco’ programs and having to wait 3 hours does not bother us because we have just adjusted our daily routines a little bit. A little bit of awareness and a broader perspective really makes the difference.

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