NFCCA

Stories from the NFCCA Newsletter, the “Northwood News”

Northwood News ♦ April 2009

Take a Home Water Audit to See How You Use Water

Are you interested in learning how to save water and money at home?  This home water audit will help you identify easy ways to conserve water at home.  Answer the questions.  Check the responses that best match your current water use actions.  Each response has a water drop rating.  After answering all of the questions, count the number of water drops to determine your home water conservation score.  Water smart tips, in italics, follow each checklist for water use.

A) BATHROOM USAGE

Do you check the toilet tank for water leaks at least twice a year?

          Yes2 Drops
          Don’t know  0 Drops
          No0 Drops
Tip:  Place a few drops of food coloring in the toilet tank.  If the food coloring is seen in the bowl without flushing, there is a leak.

Do you have a low-flow toilet?

(If home was built after 1992, check yes.)
          Yes2 Drops
          Don’t know  0 Drops
          No0 Drops
Tip:  A low-flow toilet uses 1.5 gallons of water per flush instead of an older toilet that uses 5 or more gallons of water per flush.

How often is the toilet being used as a wastebasket to flush away trash?

          Never2 Drops
          Sometimes  0 Drops
          Always0 Drops
Tip:  Use a wastebasket instead of the toilet to flush away trash.  Each flush uses 1.5 or more gallons of water, depending on the type of toilet.

Do you have a low-flow showerhead?

(If less than 2 gallons of water per minute, check yes.)­
          Yes2 Drops
          Don’t know  0 Drops
          No0 Drops
Tip:  Low-flow showerheads can save approximately three gallons of water per minute.

What is the average shower time per person?

          5 min. or less  2 Drops
          5-10 minutes1 Drop
          10 min.+0 Drops
Tip:  Taking shorter showers can save approximately five gallons of water per minute, depending on the type of showerhead.

What is the average depth of water in the bathtub?

          ½-full or less  2 Drops
          ½-full1 Drop
          Full0 Drops
Tip:  Filling a bathtub less than ½-full can save approximately 18 gallons of water.

B) KITCHEN AND LAUNDRY USAGE

Do you have an aerator on the kitchen sink faucet?

          Yes2 Drops
          Don’t know  0 Drops
          No0 Drops
Tip:  Aerators can save up to two gallons of water per minute.

How are dishes hand washed in the sink?

          Water turned off when not needed2 Drops
          Water continually running while rinsing1 Drop
          Water continually running while washing and rinsing  0 Drops
Tip:  Fill the kitchen sink with water to wash and rinse dishes instead of letting the water continually run.

How full are your dishwasher loads?

          ½-full or less  0 Drops
          ½-full1 Drop
          Full2 Drops
Tip:  Wait until you have full loads.  Use water- and energy-saving cycles.

How full are your laundry loads?

          ½-full or less  0 Drops
          ½-full1 Drop
          Full2 Drops
Tip:  Wait until you have full loads.  Use water- and energy-saving cycles.

C) OUTDOOR USAGE

Are lawns watered only when they really need it?

          Yes2 Drops
          Don’t know  0 Drops
          No0 Drops
Tip:  Adjust your lawn-watering schedule to the season.  For winter grass, water every 7-14 days.  For summer grass, water every 3-6 days.

What types of plants make up the majority of your landscape?

          Mostly low-water use2 Drops
          Mixture of low- and high-water use  1 Drop
          Mostly high-water use0 Drops
Tip:  Landscaping with low-water-use plants can reduce your outdoor water use.  Check online for lists of low-water-use plants.

What time of the day do you water?

          In the morning or evening2 Drops
          Anytime of the day1 Drop
          During the middle of the day  0 Drops
Tip:  Watering in the cooler times of the day (morning or evening) reduces the amount of water that is lost through evaporation.

How do you clean your driveway and sidewalks?

          With a broom only2 Drops
          With a broom and garden hose  0 Drops
          With a garden hose0 Drops
Tip:  Use a broom, instead of a garden hose, to clean your driveway and sidewalks.  It does the job just as well and you will save water.

How do you wash your car?

          Bucket of water2 Drops
          Garden hose with spray nozzle turned on and off  1 Drop
          Garden hose with no spray nozzle0 Drops
Tip:  Use a bucket of water to wash your car instead of letting the garden hose continually run.  If you use a garden hose to rinse your car, turn the water on and off as needed.

Your Home Water Conservation Score


   © 2009 NFCCA  [Source: https://nfcca.org/news/nn200904e.html]