October makes us think of many things – leaves falling from trees, playoff baseball, Halloween and energy efficiency. Last year, President Obama signed a proclamation declaring October as National Energy Action Month, encouraging Americans to save water, energy and money. For homeowners looking to reduce their water footprint, a great place to start is in the bathroom.
The bathroom can be a major source of water waste and a drain on the wallet if homeowners don’t take the time to fix leaks and upgrade outdated features. The EPA estimates that the average American family spends $474 on water and sewerage charges annually, a number that can go down with simple bathroom maintenance. Keeping your bathroom up-to-date, along with making simple changes in water usage habits, can conserve water and have a positive impact on monthly bills.
October is the perfect time to update your bathroom and help sustain our environment, while also lowering monthly water bills. Here are some simple actions that homeowners can take to conserve water and energy in the bathroom for this month and beyond:
· Start at the Bowl: According to the EPA, more than one trillion gallons of water leak from U.S. homes every year and the toilet is oftentimes the main culprit. The average leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons of water each day. Checking the toilet for leaks should be a regular habit for homeowners.
· Upgrade Water Fixtures: The bathroom accounts for 75 percent of indoor water use. Upgrading water fixtures can help reduce the amount of water used, as well as help to freshen up the look and feel of the bathroom.
· Go High-Efficiency: The toilet can account for as much as 30 percent of household water usage, while the average American shower has a water flow of 2.1 gallons per minute. By installing high-efficiency toilets, showers and faucets, homeowners can save up to 25,000 gallons a year.
· Call a Professional: The bathroom is not a place for trial-and-error when it comes to home improvement. Investing in professional maintenance will save money in the long run. Call a licensed professional to repair a leaky toilet, shower or faucet.
We all need to play our part in conserving energy and water for our planet – and not just during Energy Action Month. The bathroom should be at the top of the list for homeowners looking to reduce energy and water usage. Along with environmental benefits, updating your bathroom will add to the ambiance and longevity of the room. With the right fixtures you will be amazed at how cost-effective and beautiful having a more environmentally-friendly bathroom can be!- Tim O’Connell, F.W. Webb Plumbing Products Manager