Water is a precious commodity, and we in the U.S. are quite lucky to have a readily available supply of clean drinking water. So we need to make an effort to conserve it… That and the price of water just keeps going up! Which are two good reasons. But you probably already knew that, in fact I’m wagering the whole reason you are here is because you asked “How to save money on your water bill?”
And it’s a good thing you came, because we have some of the best tips that you are going to find when it comes to slashing your bill.
Related Article: Tips to Keep Warm and Save Money on Your Heating Bill
How to Save Money on Your Water Bill Outside
You might not have guessed this, but your outside water use can be just as much or more than what you use in the house. So covering your bases outside is going to do a lot to save you money. Of course, if you live in an apartment, then there’s a good chance you aren’t using a lot out there, but we are going to cover it anyway.
1. Get Rid of Your Lawn
Lawns are costly, a 1000 square foot lawn will use about 620 gallons three times a week. Which is absolutely insane for just a bit of greenery. So if you can, then switching your lawn out for gravel, or other lawn alternatives. It will save you a lot of money each month.
2. Use Soaker Hoses
Standard sprinklers spray everywhere, which is good for getting a large area wet, but not great if you are trying to save money on your water bill. Instead, make the switch to a soaker hose. You can buy them online, or at any local hardware store. However these aren’t necessarily the best option.
Making you own soaker hose will allow you plan out exactly where the water is going to go, which means it will be perfect for your plants, and not wasting water.
3. Use Rain Water
Another great option for reducing you water usage outside is to make better use of rainwater. Rainwater, obviously is free, but letting it just run off after the rain is only going to get you so far. With just a little investment, you can set up a rain barrel.
This water is great for plants, but isn’t suitable for drinking without treatment.
4. Let Kid’s Play In a Kiddie Pool
Kids love to play in sprinklers. I can personally attest to this, I was once a kid, and sprinklers are great. But they aren’t very conservative. A better option is to invest in a Kiddie Pool. These small pools are great for young children, especially when it’s a good hot day.
But at the same time they don’t take a lot of water for you kids to have fun, which is good for your pocket, in the long run.
5. Replace Plants With Drought Resistant Varieties
Some plants take a lot of water to keep alive, others, not so much. Making a conscious decision to pick drought resistant plants when you are landscaping can potentially save you thousands of gallons each year. Which of course is going to be nice when the bill comes.
6. Add Mulch to Your Garden
Mulching your garden is not only a great way to reduce weeds, but as it turns out, it also reduces evaporation. A good mulch allows water to pass through the top layer and into the soil, while protecting the soil and the water therein from the heat of the sun. Which will keep both you plants, and your wallet greener.
7. Let Your Car Get a Little Dirty
The less you wash you car, the less water it’s going to take overall. But that’s not the only way to save on water. A professional carwash takes less water than doing it yourself.
Although, I can’t exactly recommend that as a saving tactic, because the water is the cheap part of that service. Although if you are looking at environmental concerns more than what’s in you pocket, then it might be something you want to consider.
8. Don’t Spray Off Sidewalks and Driveways
I know just how tempting it is to grab the hose and wash all the dirt away, but sweeping your driveway and sidewalks are of corse going to take less water, which will save you money on your bill come the end of the month.
In the Kitchen
Your kitchen is most likely you next big source of water use. From cooking, to drinking, and cleaning the kitchen has a lot of options when you are still wondering how to save money on your water bill.
9. Ditch the Garbage Disposal
This one may not save you a lot of money, but that depends on how much you use your garbage disposal. Either way, it’s not hard to get used to throwing your garbage in the trash.
But if you don’t like the idea of filing up a landfill, then look into composting. It takes no water, and can help fertilize your garden.
10. Don’t Use More Water Than You Need
When cooking pasta and other food, we tend to use a lot of water. But the truth is that we are often using too much. You can cut back here quite a bit, and not notice any difference in your food.
11. Don’t Rinse Dishes Before You Wash Them
Scrape the food off, sure, but don’t go rinsing dishes before you wash them. This not only takes more water, but also more effort. So get used to throwing them in the dish washer a little dirty.
12. Use Your Dishwasher
Speaking of dishwashers, did you know they actually use less water than hand washing your dishes? New machines will use between 3 to 5 gallons per load, which is incredible if you consider that your tap puts out that same amount of water in one minute.
13. Make Sure the Dishwasher is Full
A full dishwasher takes the same amount of water as one that only has one plate in it. So make sure to fill it to the brim. The more you put in per load, the more money you are going to save on you water bill.
14. Install an Aerator
If you don’t already have them, check all your sinks for aerators. These little devices were designed to keep water from splashing everywhere when you turn on the tap. As a great bonus though, they also reduce the amount of water that comes out, while keeping the same water pressure.
15. Install an Under-Sink Water Heater
You know how it goes, you turn on the sink, then turn it to hot, then wait… Yep, all that time you are waiting for the water to heat up is just pouring money down the drain. Instead you can invest in an under-sink water heater. These little guys are awesome. They put out piping hot water right when you need it.
As a bonus, the reduce the amount of lead you consume, which is found in old pipes and water heaters.
16. Heat Water in the Microwave, or on the Stove
An even cheaper option than the last, is to heat the water you are going to use on the stove or microwave. With this, there is absolutely no waste whatsoever, so long as you only heat up the amount you need.
The other benefit here is that you aren’t paying to heat up the pipes running from your water heater to your kitchen, so it will help you save money on electricity too(or on gas depending on your arrangement).
17. Store Drinking Water in the Refrigerator
In the same way that you wait for hot water to come out of the tap, we wait for it to get cold too. You can cut down the amount you are pouring down the drain by keeping drinking water in the fridge. As a bonus, it will typically be colder anyway.
In the Bathroom
The next stop on you saving water list should be the bathroom. Showers, baths, and toilets go through a lot of water each year, so there are some great tips in here.
18. Fix a Leaking Toilet
Here is the big one, a leaky toilet can easily waste 200 gallons a day. So get it fixed as soon as possible.
19. Replace Your Toilet’s Flapper
This most common cause of toilet leaks is going to be the flapper. You should replace these about once a year. They say that they last longer, but that’s not always the case. Plus they are really easy and cheap to replace.
20. Get an Adjustable Flapper
While you’re at it, get an adjustable flapper. These reduce the amount of water than any toilet uses.
21. Fix Leaking Faucets
I won’t believe this if I hadn’t used the faucet drip calculator myself, but a leaky faucet dripping once every six seconds wastes 347 gallons a year! That’s a lot of wasted water for something which seems so insignificant.
So get it fixed, and save some money. Also the dripping noise won’t keep you up all night, so that’s a double win.
22. Turn Off the Water While You Brush
When you are brushing your teeth, or shaving for that matter, turn the faucet off. It may not seem like a lot of water is being wasted, but it adds up quick when you do it every day.
23. Avoid Baths
It seems a little strange, but a 10 minute shower uses less water than a bath. You can save anywhere from 5 to 10 gallons depending on your shower head.
24. Get a Low-Flow Shower Head
Oh boy another one that I hate. Alright, these aren’t as bad as the toilets, but once again I am left with fact that these do save up to 43% of the water used while showering. Which is around 5000 gallons a year.
25. Cut Down Shower Time
Of course the best way to cut back on shower usage, is going to be to cut back on shower use. Switching from a 20 minute shower to a 10 will cut the cost in half.
26. Do a Navy Shower
On boats water is scarce… Well fresh water is scarce. As a result, the Navy had to figure out a way to keep their soldiers clean without using much water, which gave birth to the Navy Shower. This is really easy. You wet yourself down, turn off the water, then lather up. When you are done you turn the water back on and rinse off.
This simple technique cuts the total water use down to about 3 gallons.
27. Get a Fill Cycle Diverter
Fill cycle diverters take the excess water that would go into your toilet bowl, and redirect it to the tank, which saves water after every flush.
28. Put a Bottle in the Toilet Tank
Putting a water bottle in the tank of a toilet reduces its water use per flush but the amount of water that the bottle displaces, so a one liter bottle saves one liter per flush. Pretty simple stuff.
29. Change Your Toilet to a Low-Flow Model
I hate these things. I clog enough toilets as it is, but I can’t argue with the results. Low-flow toilets save anywhere from two to three times as much water when compared to older models.
30. In the Laundry Room
There isn’t a whole lot you can do to save water while washing clothes, but the next three points still add up.
31. Make Sure Your Washing Machine is Full
A full washing machine is an efficient washing machine. Though you don’t really have to fill it to capacity. Since most machines allow you to adjust the water level, you only need to fill it to the appropriate setting.
32. If It’s Not Dirty, Don’t Wash It
Maybe not underwear, but there are a lot of clothes that can be worn more than once. Particularly coats, which don’t have much skin contact, and usually aren’t worn for the entire day.
33. Buy a High-Efficiency Washer
New washing machines are much more efficient than older models. A high-efficiency washing machine will save you around 5 to 10 gallons per load.
Around The House
There are a few more odd pieces of advice that don’t fit nicely into the other categories, but can still save money. That’s what these tips are.
34. Store Greywater
Greywater is a strange one. This is a form a relatively clean water, or in other words, water that you wouldn’t drink, but is still useful. So sink run off, bathwater, and cooking water can all be reused for other purposes if you collect it.
For example, if you were to let the water you used for cooking noodles cool down, then there is no harm in using it to water your plants.
35. Use Faucets Near the Water Heater
The closer your water access is to the heater, the less time it takes for it to warm up. So you’ll be using less water over all.
There are a couple other ways you can go about this:
- Insulate Your Pipes: proper insulation will keep the pipes from getting too cold.
- Try a Hot Water Recirculation System: These return water to the water heater constantly, which means you have hot water as soon as you turn on the faucet
I think that just about covers it. If there are any other ways to save money on your water bill, then I doubt they would have much of an impact after applying the tips on this list. But there are always other ways to save money, if you are interested.