• A dripping faucet can waste as much as 150 gallons of water each day, or 4,500 gallons per month. Repair the faucet to save water and reduce your water bill.
• Conserve energy by checking the temperature setting on your water heater. It should not be above 120°F or medium setting on older models.
• Toilets consume more than 40% of your total water usage. Install a new toilet flapper and fill valve to keep your toilet running efficiently.
• Check your water meter during a period of time when no water is being used. Make a note of the meter reading and check it 8 to 10 hours later. If the meter has moved, there is an indication that you may have an undetected water leak, which should be corrected.
• To prevent excessive watering of your lawn in the summertime, purchase an inexpensive spring-loaded timer which attaches directly to your outside faucet. This will prevent overwatering in case you forget to shut off the sprinkler.
• Run the dishwasher and washing machine at night or at off times to conserve water temperature and pressure for your guests.
• Before below freezing point winter weather, disconnect outside water hoses. If left connected, water in the hoses can freeze and expand causing faucets and connecting pipes inside your home to freeze and break. If your home is equipped with interior shut-off valves leading to outside faucets, close them and drain water from lines.
• Avoid pouring fats or cooking oils down the kitchen drain because liquid fats solidify in the pipes and create clogs. Wipe congealed grease from pots.
• Don't use excessive amounts of detergents, bleach or chemicals that may kill the natural bacteria in your septic system. Try to use biodegradable soaps and detergents. It’s better for the environment and better for your plumbing.
• Your water heater works harder during winter months. Flush it out and remove sediment buildup, which causes corrosion, shortens life span and reduces heating efficiency. Drain several gallons from the faucet near the bottom of the tank. Connect a hose to the faucet and direct water into a nearby drain.
• Plan ahead, spread out showers throughout the day; wait 10 minutes between showers rather than taking one right after another.
• If shower pressure is weak, pour a cup of vinegar into a plastic bag, place it over the showerhead, and soak. Use a twist tie to hold it in place overnight. In the morning, remove the bag and use an old toothbrush to gently scrub off the mineral deposits to help restore water flow.
• Provide a trash bin in the bathroom so the toilet isn't used as a garbage can. Never flush cotton swabs, cotton balls, hair, facial scrub pads, diapers, sanitary products or similar items down the toilet. These items will not easily dissolve and are responsible for most clogs.
• Ensure that all drains have strainers to prevent hair, soap and debris from clogging the drain lines.
• Check toilets for hidden leaks. Add six drops of food coloring to the toilet tank. If the toilet is leaking, color will appear in the bowl within 30 minutes.
• Exercise water supply valves under sinks and toilets to prevent them from sticking.
• Make sure toilets flush properly. If the handle must be held down for a thorough flush or jiggled to stop the water from running you may need to replace worn tank parts. They're inexpensive and you'll notice a lower water bill.