Jenna Careri / August 25th, 2016
For such a small room, the bathroom sees a lot of water and electricity use throughout the day. Long, steamy showers to relieve stress and primping to get ready for a date can mean a lot of time with the water running and styling gadgets plugged in. It also means there are lots of opportunities to cut back, as well. Try these tips next time you’re blow drying your hair or ironing your button-down in the bathroom.
Change your showerhead
Many people think that a low-flow showerhead means you’ll only get a trickle of water. But it’s easy to find a water-restricting head that offers a satisfying spray. A water-efficient showerhead uses no more than 2 gallons of water per minute, compared to the old standard of 6 gallons. You can also find showerheads that aerate the water, offering a drenching spray for only 1.25 gallons per minute.
Add a faucet aerator
This is one of the easiest fixes you can make to conserve water. For just a few dollars, you can screw on an aerator to the end of your sink faucet. It mixes air into the water stream so you use less water but rarely notice the difference in pressure.
Install a low-flow toilet
If you have an old toilet, consider changing it out for a new one, which uses no more than 1.6 gallons per flush. If a new toilet isn’t in the budget, add a plastic bottle filled with water to the toilet tank. This takes up space so you use less water each time you flush.
Whether it’s a dripping faucet or a leaking toilet, get leaks fixed as soon as possible. All that wasted water can quickly affect your monthly bill.
There are several tricks for using less water in the shower. A few to try: turn off the water while soaping up or shaving; wash your hair every other day; use a timer; or play a fast-paced song that’s your target shower length.
Collect water in the shower
If it takes a couple minutes for the water to warm up, put a bucket in shower to collect the cold water. Use it to water your plants.
Turn off the water while brushing
There’s no need to leave the water on while you’re brushing your teeth or shaving your face. Turn the water on only when it’s time to rinse.
Be efficient with bulbs
CFLs and LEDs often don’t take well to the heat and humidity that builds up in a bathroom. Use bulbs marked for humid environments or try a halogen light to replace your regular incandescent bulbs.
Unplug your electric toothbrush
Most electric toothbrushes only need to be plugged in for a few hours a week. It’s a waste of energy to keep them plugged in all the time.
Unplug other appliances after use
Some hair straighteners and shavers work on standby mode, so even when they’re off, they still draw electricity. Unplug them when you leave the bathroom.
Air-dry your hair
Instead of using the hair dryer and straightening iron every day, try going natural. Not only does air-drying your hair save energy, it can also save you time in the morning.
Turn off the exhaust fan
You should definitely turn on the fan after you shower to remove humidity, but don’t leave on for more than 20 minutes.
Use cold water
When brushing your teeth or washing your hands, only twist the right-hand faucet. Drawing hot water when you don’t need it wastes the energy used to heat that water.
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