You may have noticed that your hydro and utilities bills were higher than usual these past summer months, which can be attributed to the hotter than expected temperatures this summer. Even your friends or family members who are usually impervious to the heat cranked up the air conditioning, taken a few more showers and consumed more water this past summer.
The good news is that the cost of firing up your furnace is lower than running your air conditioning, and you likely won’t need as many showers with the fall and winter season approaching us, so you should notice your hydro and utilities lowering again, but how can you combat that spike in your bill for next season?
I know many people who would be very unwilling to sacrifice air conditioning during the summer months; additionally, retaining that heat and moisture from the humidity could also result in an unhealthy and unsanitary environment for you and your family to live in. So the next logical area to consider would be to consider lowering your utilities bill with water consumption. On average, it takes about 66 days or two months for a person to form a new habit, so starting to practise water-decreasing strategies now, while the weather is cooler would be ideally timed for next summer’s heat wave.
Did you know? The average use of water consumption per person each day is 50 gallons in a household. Infants and teenagers tend to mean higher water consumption because of the increase in laundry loads and longer shower times for teens. If your home is using more than 50 gallons per person, you should look into options for reducing water consumption per person and for the home overall. Out of all the rooms in your home, the bathroom utilizes the most water usage, check out some tips below for how to lower your water bill.
Tips for Decreasing Water Use in the Bathroom:
- Take shorter showers: The average shower is about 8 minutes long and uses about 17 gallons. Try cutting your shower time in half to use about 7.5 gallons each shower.
- Turn off the tap when you are lathering soap and shampooing.
- Install a low-flow showerhead in the bathroom, which generally restrict the flow of water to about 2.5 gallons per minute.
- You can test the flow rate of your showerhead with a five gallon bucket and stopwatch. Turn on the shower to fill the bucket for two minutes. If the bucket doesn’t overflowing during those two minutes, than you have a low-flow shower head.
- Turn off the tap while washing your face, shaving or brushing your teeth.
- Don’t ignore a leaky faucet: With the possibility of losing more than 20 gallons of water per day, it is literally going down the drain with your hard earned money.
- Fill a plastic bottle with water and place inside the toilet tank to reduce the amount of water flushed.
- Toilet flushing is one of the biggest water wasters in the home. Avoid flushing unnecessary waste down the toilet, which can be placed in the garbage or compost.
- If you have the budget, purchase a low-flow toilet, which can use as little as 1.6 gallons per flush. Some of the older models use up to 5 to 7 gallons per flush.
Other ways to reduce your hydro and utilities bills during extreme hot and cold temperature include reducing draft proofing your windows and doors. Also, check out our blog on energy-efficient resources to save you up to $4,000 this year.
Try implementing some of these tips for a week and let me know if you think you can make it past the 66-day rule to forming new habits. Don`t be afraid to reach out in the comments section for more energy-saving resources when it comes to home renovations like your shower, windows, doors and solariums.