When you take steps to conserve water, you’re not only lowering your utility bills, you’re helping save an irreplaceable and vital resource. One effective way to reduce your household consumption is by installing water-conserving plumbing fixtures. Here are some different types of fixtures to consider:
If you haven’t upgraded from conventional faucets yet, you’re wasting water and energy every time you use hot water. The waste adds up quickly because running a conventional hot water faucet for five minutes uses an equal amount of energy as a 60-watt light bulb that’s left on for 14 hours. Low-flow faucets on the market today have flow ratings between 0.8 and 1.5 gallons per minute (gpm), and making the switch can help you slash consumption up to 30 percent depending on which model you choose.
Water Efficient Toilets
The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) WaterSense program has certified more than 60 water-efficient toilet models, and they’re available with some impressive innovations. The ultra-efficient toilets on the market today include gravity-fed, single flush models, pressure assisted models complete with storage tanks or small pumps, and dual-flush versions that give you a choice of either 0.8 or 1.6 gallon flushes. Compared to basic 1.6 gallon toilets, the most efficient models cut water consumption by 20 percent, and they can reduce household water usage by 5,000 gallons a year compared to an older, standard toilet.
Low-Flow Shower Heads
Standard shower heads pump out about 2.5 gallons per minute. Water Sense-certified models have a flow of less than 2.0 gpm, but you won’t notice any appreciable difference in water pressure and can still enjoy an invigorating shower. A half gallon per minute difference may not seem like much, but in the average household it can add up to about 2,800 gallons over a year’s time. That amount translates into significant savings on your water bills, and about 370 kilowatt hours (kWh) in energy savings if you own an electric water heater.
For advice about installing new plumbing fixtures and other ways to conserve water in your Portland home, contact us today at Roth Heating & Cooling.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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