If we’re honest, most of us know there are about a million things we could do to save on water. The thing is, a lot of those things can be a little… well, gross. No matter how much water it saves, you’ll be hard pressed to convince anyone not to flush the toilet. When considering ways to conserve water, too often inconvenient options overpower simple ones. Then, homeowners feel like there’s nothing they can do to lower water consumption without seriously inconveniencing themselves.
That’s a shame, because there are a lot of surprisingly easy ways we could all optimize our water use. That’s why we’re highlighting just a few super simple ways to save water over the summer. Follow these steps, and you can save without noticing any kind of inconvenience at all. When you see the results, maybe you’ll commit to some of the more ‘extreme’ measures… or not.
Water in the Morning or Evening
The longer the water you use on your lawn remains on your lawn, the more time your grass has to drink it up. The problem is, in the summer, the sun is so strong and the air is so hot that water evaporates fast. If you water your lawn or your garden in the middle of the afternoon, you’re probably experiencing some serious diminishing returns, no matter how much water you use.
Luckily, there’s an easy way around this: wait to put out your sprinkler and water your plants until the sun has set. After sundown, air temperature falls off rapidly, and the sun’s rays won’t bake away the water you set down. Not only can you use your sprinkler less, your watering will be more effective! You can also water early in the morning for similar results. Any time you can put water down when the sun can’t burn it up will work just fine.
Yards are great, but they’re also expensive. Grass eats up a lot of water and other resources. If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand (or thumb?) at gardening, summer might be the perfect excuse. There are a ton of beautiful and useful garden plants and flowers that require much, much less water than grass does. Set aside even a small plot of your lawn for a vegetable or succulent garden, and you end up with a fun project, and cheap and pretty piece of landscaping, and a way to save quite a bit on water.
Weed and maintain your garden diligently for even better results. Don’t underestimate how much money a properly weeded, fertilized, and mulched garden can save you. Best of all, as you gain experience gardening, you get to enjoy a new hobby that literally pays! Next year, you can expand your gardening horizons for even greater savings.
Turn Down the Heat
Did you know that your home has a master water heating gauge? When you control hot water at a faucet, you’re actually controlling the rate at which hot water flows out. You’re not altering the temperature of the water itself. To do that, find your water heater. There will be a gauge somewhere near the tank or connecting pipes that tells you how hot the water is. Turn the gauge down to the “warm” setting of 120 degrees.
If anything, you’ll notice that it’s easier to get your hot water to the right temperature, and you’ll conserve water in the process. If you want to go further, you could try taking cool showers instead of warm ones. Cool showers take less energy and water, and you’re usually finished with them faster, as well. A cool shower on a hot summer day sounds pretty refreshing, doesn’t it?
Go to a Car Wash
Washing your car in your driveway seems like a fun and easy way to save a little money… but unfortunately, it also tends to be a huge waste of water. When you think about it, it makes sense. You hose down every part of your car, lather up the soap, and then hose it all down again. Remember how the water coming off your water leaks down into your storm drain for hours after washing? That’s a lot of water.
Car washes may seem more expensive in the short term, but they tend to be more effective and cost-efficient in the long term. Professional car washes don’t take as much time, they keep your car clean longer, and best of all: all that water isn’t your problem! Plus, you know a little part of you still gets excited to go through a car wash. Come on. They’re pretty fun.
Hopefully, these super simple tips will help break down the stigma that saving on water costs has to hurt… or smell. Give a couple of these a whirl this summer and watch your water bill month-over-month. We think you’ll be surprised what a difference it can make.
Of course, if you feel like your water bill is way too high, there might be a problem with your plumbing. If you’ve got leaks, clogs, or breaks, no amount of water saving sorcery will help you! If that’s the case, call Ben Franklin today. We can figure out what’s causing the problem and fix it fast. Have a great summer!