The Power of Water: How to Make Every Drop Count

September 20, 2016

Mass Save strives to provide you, our reader, with ways to save energy while properly heating and cooling your residence, whatever the season. Usually, these tips are specific to insulation, light bulbs, thermostats, and heating and cooling. However, here’s another topic that you may not hear as much about: water. Cutting your water usage—especially hot water—by just a small percentage can save a significant amount of money, no matter the season! Imagine, saving money and energy while reducing your carbon footprint all with a few small changes in your daily life.

Did you know that in an average household 18% of the energy bill is directly related to water usage? Maybe that’s not so surprising when you consider all the energy required to heat water for baths, showers, cooking, shaving, dishwasher usage, washing dishes at the sink, and washing clothes.

Here are a few simple ways to save water, energy, and put a dent in your electric bill:

Start by taking shorter showers. The average shower is said to be around 8 minutes, but those 8 minutes use up more than 17 gallons of water! Shorten your time to around 5 minutes per shower and you will already start to see the change in your utility bill.  You can also make the change to low-flow showerheads. You can purchase quality, low-flow fixtures at a low cost and achieve water savings of 25%–60%. Visit our Shower Fixture Offer Page to purchase discounted energy-saving shower fixtures online.

Change the way you wash your clothes. Each washing cycle uses approximately 50 gallons of water, so make the most of those gallons by making sure each load is a full one, or adjusting the amount of water to match the size of the load. Also, try to stay away from using the warm- or hot-water settings when washing clothes. Instead, pre-treat stains with warm water and then wash using the cold-water option for even more energy and money savings. This small change can help you save up to $40 per year. Drying clothes can use up a lot of energy too, so make sure you don’t over-dry them. Whenever possible, air dry your clothes, that way they last longer and your bill will shrink rather than your clothes.

Use the dishwasher only when it’s full. The dishwasher uses up a lot of water and energy, so if you must use it, make sure you only run it when it is full. That way, you make the most of all that water and energy. Another great tip is to scrape the plates before putting them in the dishwasher. If you rinse with water instead of scraping, you will be using up a lot of unnecessary water and energy.

Fix leaky faucets. A leak of one drip per second wastes 1,661 gallons of water and can cost up to $35 per year. Learn more about how to fix a leaky faucet.

Small changes can go a long way. Make sure you turn off the water while you brush your teeth and shave. While it may seem small, it takes about the same amount of energy to leave your water running for 5 minutes as it does to keep a 60-watt light bulb on for 14 hours.

With just a few small changes here and there, you can save money, energy, and help make the planet a little greener. For more of these simple tips and tricks, be sure to check out our Energy Saving Tips page.

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