Upgrading your home with eco-friendly elements is a fantastic way to cut back on utility costs, help protect the environment, and increase the value of your home. These upgrades often pay for themselves over time, making them well worth the investment. Water consumption is a common issue, especially in older homes. As utility prices are on the rise and global demand for clean water increases, every little bit of sustainability helps.
Here are five tips for making your plumbing more eco-friendly and sustainable.
Stop Using Chemical Drain Cleaners
The first thing you can do to contribute to an eco-friendly plumbing system is to stop using chemical drain cleaners. In addition to being terrible for the environment, these chemicals can damage your plumbing system by corroding the pipes. If you experience a consistently slow drain, call a plumber to take a look and identify the issue so you can permanently correct it. In the meantime, you can use a blend of vinegar, hot water, and baking soda for an effective, eco-friendly drain cleaner that won’t harm your pipes (source: kellieplumbing.com/drain-cleaners/)
Install Faucet Aerators
Faucet aerators mix oxygen with the water as it comes through the tap to increase its surface area while using less water. You still get the same coverage and cleanliness from your aerated water, but your use will decrease dramatically. Using faucet aerators can reduce your water consumption— and your utility bill— by 30% per year. In addition to replacing your older showerheads and taps with aerators, it’s also important to practice water-saving habits. Turn the taps off while brushing your teeth and limit your showers to under five minutes whenever possible.
Use a Tankless Water Heater
As the name implies, tankless water heaters are compact devices that heat your water without a big, bulky tank. This type of water heater offers several benefits, including space optimization, no hot water shortages, and incredible cost savings. Traditional water heaters hold gallons of water and consume energy to keep it heated. If you don’t use the hot water, you’re still paying for the power to keep it warm. If you’re the last person to have a shower after everyone else, you’ll likely get a nice ice bath. A tankless or on-demand water heater warms the water as it goes through the wall mount device. With this device, you’re not paying to keep water hot when it’s not in use, and you won’t run out of hot water when you need it the most.
Use a Smart Leak Detector
Smart home devices are revolutionizing the homeownership experience. One of the best ways to enhance your home plumbing system is to install a smart leak detector. These devices monitor changes in water pressure to determine whether there’s a leak and where it’s located. If you don’t have a smart detection device, sudden changes in water pressure, interior damage, or skyrocketing water bills are the only way to detect a leak. Now, you can find a leak before it becomes a problem and have a plumber address it ASAP.
Use a Low-Flow Toilet
Older toilets use as much as 3.5 liters of water to flush; that’s like pouring out a gallon of water each time you flush the toilet. Modern, low-flow alternatives use half the amount, saving hundreds of gallons and hundreds of dollars each year. If you can’t justify a toilet upgrade just yet, try a version of the brick trick. Putting a heavy object in your tank can offset the water, so your toilet uses less with each flush. People used to use bricks, but these tend to crumble and cause damage in moist environments. Instead, fill a glass jar with water or rocks to offset the water.
With these environmentally and monetary sustainable tricks, you can reduce your water consumption and make your home plumbing more eco-friendly.