Water, just like food, is one of the bare minimum requirements for the sustainability of life. The provision for a reliable supply of water to every home is a duty taken seriously by both private and public service providers.
While the external water supply might always be there, how much it’ll cost us is highly dependent on how much of the water we use. When you have a dog, this adds to your list of water needs and ultimately to your water bills.
Since getting rid of your dog to save up on water may be an extreme measure, the next best thing would be to implement measures to save up on water.
Here are some tips to help you save on water at home:
Check Your Plumbing for Leaks
Whether it’s the faucets or the pipes in the plumbing, you must regularly check for leaks in the house. Other than the obvious loss of water, leaking plumbing leads to wetting of surfaces like floors which can result in injury either for you or your dog. Unchecked water leaks in the house can also lead to the growth of mold or weakening wood surfaces.
Use a Glass of Water While Brushing Your Teeth
When you use a glass of water when brushing your teeth, for both wetting and rinsing, you could use far less water than you would if you were letting the faucet run. This also goes for shaving; you could use a small pail of water rather than letting the taps run.
Use the Dishwasher Only for Full Loads
When using a dishwasher, it uses almost similar amounts of water to clean both full or fewer dish loads. Though a dishwasher is an efficient way of doing dishes, it would be even more efficient and water-saving if you use it when the dish load is big enough to fill up the machine.
When Washing Dishes by Hand Fill up Rinsing Water
You will save a lot of water if you use a water-filled pail or sink for rinsing instead of using running water. When doing this, however, it’s advised you change the rinsing water whenever it gets even slightly visibly discolored.
Water Your Lawn or Garden When It’s Cool Outside
When you water your lawn or garden when it is hot outside, most of the water will evaporate and be of no use to the plants. Other than the evaporation, watering your outdoor plants when it’s hot outside can also be harmful to the plants, since the water will get to the plants when it’s warm, this may cause the roots to wither.
Ensure All Taps Are Well Shut When Not in Use
Regularly check the taps in the house to ensure they’re well shut. Often when a child is using a tap, they may fail to shut it tightly. Also, when you’re going out, it’s important to check all the taps in the house before you leave.
Fill up Buckets for Soaping While Washing Your Car
When washing your car, you may be tempted to hose the car rather unnecessarily longer when you’re applying soap. It is more efficient to have all your soapy water in a bucket and water-saving to use a hose only when you are rinsing the car.
Take Shorter Showers
It’s quite normal to get lost in the shower after a long day and just let the water drip on your body but doing this frequently will take its toll on your water bills. Taking relatively shorter showers not only saves you on water but also ensures you get a few extra minutes to work on other things.
Do not Fill the Bathtub Excessively
When taking a bath, it is advised you fill the tub just enough to cover your body and not more. For this to be most effective, you can fill the tub when you are already inside or have a marker on the tub walls for an adequate amount.
Avoid Unnecessary Pouring of Water
On the hot summer days, the kids may want to play outside with the dog, keeping themselves cool by hosing themselves. Though this is a good source of fun, it should be regulated and not made an every-summer-day thing.
Avoid Using a Hose When Cleaning Outdoor Surfaces
When cleaning your outdoor steps or garage floor, you can use a dry broom or water in a pail instead of a hose when you want thorough cleaning.
Make Use of Mulch on Your Garden and Plants
Organic kitchen waste like fruit and vegetable pills can be used as mulch for your garden or other outdoor plants. The mulch adds nutrients to the plants and soil and provides a covering for the soil preventing excessive evaporation and water loss.
Get Drought Resistant Plants and Trees
While you may want to give your dog a natural outdoor feeling, you must go for plants that won’t come with a need for constant watering. You can use drought-tolerant garden plants and trees like Palo Verde and the New Zealand Tea Tree.
Position Your Sprinklers Where They are Most Effective
When sprinkling your lawn, mount the sprinkler in places where most if not all the water will end up on the lawn as intended. This optimum position is usually in the middle of the lawn, away from any walls or bushes. If you have a smaller lawn, you can get a sprinkler with a smaller water radius or adjust the valves on your existing sprinkler to reduce its radius.
Water Your Lawn and Garden to Soak
When watering your lawn or garden, more so on hot days, most of the water will get trapped on the leaves or top-level soil and then evaporate without being of any major benefit to the plant. For the best effect, water your garden or lawn at night, and use just enough water for it to soak so that the water can get deeper into the soil.
Have a Watering Schedule for Your Lawn and Garden
You will save up on water if you water your lawn or garden only when it is necessary. To avoid spontaneous watering sprees, most of which are not quite effective, you can set a watering schedule. In this schedule, you can have a fixed number of minutes for leaving the taps on, which will help you keep track of the amount of water you use.
Have Pre-cooled Drinking Water in the Fridge
In most homes, it is quite common for someone to leave the tap running for a few seconds to get rid of the warm water in the pipes. Doing this can lead to substantial water losses. To prevent this, you can have already cooled drinking water stored up in the fridge.
Use a Full Sink to Clean Vegetables
When cleaning vegetables, you can fill up the sink or have water in a pail instead of running water. With this, you can soak up the vegetables in the water for a few minutes to loosen and dissolve any soil particles, making rinsing easier and more water friendly.
Don’t Leave the Faucet Running While Washing Your Dog
When washing your dog, you may frequently use a hose to make the experience fun both for you and the dog. Doing this may lead to using up more water than is necessary. You can use the hose only when rinsing the dog, but don’t let this last longer than it should.
Cut down on Cooking Water Where Possible
When cooking, you could always steam your food in place of boiling it. Steaming not only uses a fraction of the water you would have used when boiling, but it also helps preserve more natural nutrients in a well-cooked meal. Alternatively, you could use more efficient cooking apparatuses like pressure-cookers, which save both energy and water.
Reuse Water Where Possible
When you use water in a pail to wash vegetables, you could use the same to water your garden rather than disposing of it.