Ideas for Saving Water
Courtesy of Toto
Water-saving faucets come in a variety of styles and finishes, including modern ones like the above photo.
Most of us have been lectured in one form or another about the wastefulness of needlessly running the bathroom faucet while brushing our teeth, shaving, or various other hygiene- and grooming-related practices. Still, federal regulations have helped curb excessive water usage by mandating that all bathroom faucets produced since 1994 have a maximum water flow rate of 2.2 gallons per minute (gpm) (models that predate 1994 can have a maximum flow rate of 4.0 gpm). Still, there are greener faucets available that conserve more water:
- Starting in 2007, lavatory faucets in residential bathrooms with a flow rate of 1.5 gpm or lower started receiving WaterSense certification from the Environmental Protection Agency. Many major plumbing manufacturers have begun carry 1.5 gpm faucets; the EPA currently lists WaterSense certified faucets and aerators on its Web site. The site also features a calculator that can estimate potential savings from using WaterSense faucets.
- It’s difficult to find many faucets with a gpm of lower than 1.5, but if you want a sub-1.5 gpm flow rate, one way to achieve this is to attach an aerator to your faucet. Aerators that can reduce your water flow to as low as 0.5 gpm are available. Just remember that you may be sacrificing some faucet functionality when aerators that drastically reduce water flow are installed.