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Updated: September 27, 2013 18:37 IST

Water it down

Rajnish Ohri
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Did you know that your bathroom is the biggest source of water usage — and water waste?
Special Arrangement Did you know that your bathroom is the biggest source of water usage — and water waste?

The average individual uses up to 70 gallons of water in a day. You could save 25 gallons of this with a few smart moves, says Rajnish Ohri

The easiest way to beat the heat is to stand under the shower. Sadly, all our cities are reeling under water shortages. Did you know that your bathroom is the biggest source of water usage — and water waste? It is necessary to take steps to make your home more green by conserving water.

One of the top users of water in the bathroom is the shower. If you prefer showers to baths, then good for you! Showers consume less water than baths, a lot less.

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, it takes as many as 70 gallons to fill a tub, while a shower demands only 10 to 25 gallons. Taking a shower instead of a bath will save around 40 per cent of the water that you use.

An average thermostatic shower uses nine litres of water per minute. The average person spends seven minutes in the shower, using 63 litres of water. If you reduce the time you spend by one minute, you could save up to 3,285 litres over the year.

Of course, we are all tempted to stand under the shower for a long time. But you can still save water with a low-flow showerhead. Low-flow showerheads slash bathing water consumption by 50-70 per cent. They are simple to install. Many styles and features are available, including flow-adjusting dials and a pause button, which allows you to take a break for lathering up, and then return to the same temperature and pressure.

Your typical water-saving showerhead manages to reduce the flow by simply using smaller holes. These are much more advanced models.

Saving water at home does not require any significant cost outlay. For example, 75 per cent of water used indoors is in the bathroom, and 25 per cent of this is for the toilet. You can use recycling showers that are designed to give five litres of water in 15 minutes, while only using 45 litres.

The average toilet uses four gallons per flush. You can invest in an ultra-low flush toilet that will use only two gallons per flush.

By using water-saving features, in-home water use can be cut by 35 per cent. This means the average household, which uses 130,000 gallons per year, could save 44,000 gallons of water per year.

On a daily basis, the average household, using 350 gallons per day, could save 125 gallons of water per day. The average individual, currently using 70 gallons per day, could save 25 gallons of water per day.

The latest statistic is that one in every six people in the world does not have clean water for drinking, cooking and washing. Since 97 per cent of the earth’s 9.25 million trillion gallons of water is salty, and 2 per cent is locked up in snow and ice, we are left with only 1 per cent to provide for all our needs. In the future, it will be essential that we efficiently use water. Are we willing to change our habits to start conserving before it is too late? If the answer is yes, then start by making water saving a part of everyday life.

The author is Managing Director, Coram India

More In: Habitat | Features | Chennai

Very useful article. To what extent will people be moved by this and make changes remains to be seen.

Thank you Hindu for publishing this

from:  shiva
Posted on: Sep 30, 2013 at 01:31 IST
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