The most popular water appliance in your home is the toilet, using on average up to 30 percent of the home’s total water usage every day. When it comes to water conservation and each of us doing our part, the most obvious place to start is with the toilet.
A single leak in a toilet can waste thousands of gallons of water every year. Not only is that costing you money, its wasting a precious resource as well. If conserving water starts with your toilet, where do you begin?
The most obvious place to start is to fix leaks as they happen. However, toilets don’t always make noise when they leak. Drips and leaks are most often fixed by tightening fittings where two pipes meet, and where pipes join the tank. Be careful not to over-tighten, which may damage threads and the tank itself.
The flapper is a valve that sits on top of the port that leads from the tank to the bowl. When the toilet is flushed, the valve opens and allows a certain amount of water into the bowl. Over time, the flapper wears out and begins to harden, making the seal not as pliable as it once was. The looser the fit, the more leaks and problems may occur. To test and see if you have a leak, insert a few drops of dye into the tank and wait to see if it appears in the bowl. If it does, your flapper is the cause of the leak. Simply replace the flapper to restore the water process back to normal.
Avoid The Toilet Dam
A common myth for water conservation is to fill the tank with bricks so water levels will be kept to a minimum. While it sounds good in theory, it can cause more harm than good. By filling your tank with bricks, it will allow chemicals and sediment to enter your toilet, and risk harming the internal parts of the toilet tank. It also poses the risk of cracking the tank during placement.
Instead, the best way to conserve water is to upgrade your toilet to a newer model. Older toilets use anywhere from 5 to 7 gallons of water with each flush. With newer models, you can reduce water levels down to 1.3 gallons per flush or even less with dual flush toilets. And in some cases, you may even qualify for a water rebate, depending on your county and your water system.
If you have any further questions about water conservation, we’d be happy to answer them, and provide you with the easiest way to save water within your home.