Cripple Creek’s fresh, clean, local water supply is a valuable natural resource that enhances our community and our lifestyles. Fluctuating climate and weather conditions and a rise in water consumption are but a few factors that impact our water supply. Water conservation is one key method to preserve our water resources for years to come, while helping to minimize the impact negative factors could make on our resources.
The Groundwater Foundation has provided some useful, easy ways to conserve water. Assess your current water usage and see if you can implement one or more of these conservation ideas into your home and community.
Don’t Let It Run
We have all developed the bad habit of letting the faucet run while waiting for the shower to warm up, while brushing our teeth, or while waiting for a cold glass of water. Keeping a pitcher of water in the refrigerator or turning the faucet off while brushing our teeth can save several gallons of water each day. Before you turn on the tap, think of ways you can use less water to accomplish the same purpose.
Fix The Drip
There is no such thing as a “little” drip.
A leaky faucet with a drip of just 1/16 of an inch in diameter (the size of this: o ) can waste 10 gallons of water every day. You can turn off that drip by replacing worn washers or valve seats.
Another water waster is the “silent leak.” The silent toilet bowl leak is the single greatest water waster in homes. A leak of one gallon every 24 minutes (an average amount) totals 2.5 gallons per hour, or 60 gallons per day! To check your toilet for a leak, place a few drops of food coloring in the water tank and wait. If the color appears in the bowl, this indicates there is a leak. Often these leaks can be fixed with a few minor adjustments, cleaning calcium deposits from the toilet ball in the tank, or by replacing worn valves.
Close The Hose
Letting the garden hose run faster or longer than necessary while we water the lawn or wash the car often becomes a careless and wasteful habit. A 1/2 inch garden hose under normal water pressure pours out more than 600 gallons of water per hour and a 3/4 inch hose delivers almost 1,900 gallons in the same length of time. If left on overnight, one garden hose can easily waste twice as much water as the average family uses in a month.
We have all seen the neighbors water their lawns during an afternoon thunder storm. We have all seen the corner business whose automatic sprinkler system consistently over-waters, causing sheets of water to flow across sidewalks and parking lots. Be wise, watch the weather, and irrigate only during the cooler parts of the day (early
morning or late evening). How do you know if your lawn requires water? Try the step test. If you walk across your lawn and the grass does not spring back up, then it is time to water. Most grass varieties require minimal watering (1/4 – 1/2 inches, once or twice per week). Set a small cup next to your sprinkler to measure the amount your particular sprinkler delivers.
Check The Plumbing
Proper maintenance is one of the most effective water savers. Faucet washers are inexpensive and take only a few minutes to replace. At home, check all water taps, hoses, and hose connections (even those that connect to dishwashers and washing machines) for leaks. Check the garden hose too – it should be turned off at the faucet, not just at the nozzle.
The 5 Minute Challenge
A quick shower uses around 20 – 30 gallons less water than a bath. Challenge yourself and your family members to take 5 minute showers. Use a kitchen timer to keep track. Install a water-saving shower head for additional savings.
Teach Your Community
Just as it is important to conserve water in your own home, it is important to help our city save water by teaching others to use water wisely. Cities and towns can save water by eliminating leaks and installing meters. Wastewater can be treated and
reused. As you conserve water at home and in your community, you will help ensure that the water available now continues to meet the growing water needs of the future.
Get Started Conserving Water Today!
Take little steps each day to reduce the amount of water you use. By the end of the month, it will become second nature.
These water conservation tips were provided courtesy of The Groundwater Foundation.