Who doesn’t love a long, relaxing shower after a stressful day of school, work and household chores? Well, if you’re a California resident, you’re going to have to find another way to unwind. The Golden State has been in a record-breaking drought for the last four years, putting pressure on all Californians to scale back on their water use. That doesn’t mean you have to go without showering for days, conserving water means cutting energy costs even if you’re not in the middle of a drought. You’d be surprised how easy it is to save water, from your household cleaning to your hygiene routine.
Trust us: You can do it, and you should — for yourself, your roommates, and the planet!
The Basics To Conserving Water
You use water every day for a million things, so where do you start to cut back? Dr. Chad Nelsen, CEO of the Surfrider Foundation in California and a passionate environmentalist, says the most basic tip for conserving water is simply to turn it off when you’re not actually using it. You can save around two gallons of water a minute by doing so — and that’s just for the smaller tasks.
“Turn off the tap while you shave, brush your teeth or wash dishes,” he recommends. “Take a shorter shower, and fix any leaky pipes to save hundreds of gallons of water every month going to wastewater treatment plants and being discharged to the ocean.”
If you’re still wondering how big your impact can really be, take a look at our breakdown of exactly where you can conserve water and how much you can save.
Save water through personal hygiene:
Shaving: Plugging a bit of water in the sink to rinse razors is known for conserving water, hundreds of gallons a month.
Leaks: Fix those leaks to save an average 10 gallons a day.
Baths: Take showers for conserving more water; bathtubs take about 70 gallons of water to fill.
Showers: You’re already saving water by showering (go you!). Challenge yourself further to spend the shortest amount of time in there (under five minutes). You can also get a low-flow showerhead and save water, around another 12.5 gallons.
Toilets: Conserving water by throwing trash away in the bin; don’t flush it. Toilets flush an average of 3.5 gallons every time.
Conserving water by being mindful while doing chores:
Laundry: Adjust your washer settings according to the load size to save water. Also, if you’re in the market, get a front-loading machine to save 20 gallons per load vs. top-loading machines.
Dishes: Here’s a great way for conserving water! Plus an excuse to swear off handwashing dishes; dishwashers are more efficient with water (and better for communal cleanup with roommates).
Garbage Disposal: Compost your scraps if you can to save water, a few gallons each time you would have used the disposal.
Cooking and Drinking: Thaw food in the fridge instead of the sink, and use a water pitcher rather than using the tap to fill up your water glass. This is recommended for conserving water as much as you can.
Lawn and Garden: And finally, if you’re lucky enough to have a yard, Nelsen recommends letting nature help out.
“Reuse your rainwater as an irrigation source for your plants or garden,” he says. “Use gutters and downspouts to direct rainwater into your garden instead of letting it flow into the street.”
D’you know what else Roomi does outside of helping its readers with eco-friendly practices for conserving water? With our ever-increasing lists of rooms and roommates across the world, we help you find your perfect match! Download the app here and hop on the easiest ride home, ever!