American Water Offers Steps for a Healthy and Sustainable 2011
Step # 1: Drink More Tap Water!
Step # 2: Drink Water Responsibly!
Keep a reusable bottle of water near your desk, during workouts, or near
at hand while at home for frequent water breaks. Tap water is
inexpensive (typically available from the faucet for less than a penny a
gallon as a national average); safe (regulated by the
Step # 3: Check for Leaks
Millions of gallons of water are lost to leaks each year across the country. It is not uncommon to lose more than 100 gallons a week to a single toilet leak, for instance. You can check for toilet leaks by putting a few drops of food coloring in the tank, then watching for a few minutes. If the color shows up in the bowl, you have a leak that needs to be repaired. Regularly check faucets and pipes for leaks, as well. Look for drips or stains underneath or behind appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines. Outdoors, check for damaged sprinkler system heads and system leaks. As a general test, check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter changes at all, you probably have a leak. American Water offers leak detection kits, which are available in a downloadable PDF version at: http://www.amwater.com/Customer-Service/Wise-Water-Use/.
Step # 4: Use Water Efficient Fixtures
Advances in plumbing technology and design mean that faucets, showers, and toilets can use significantly less water than standard models while still delivering the rinse, spray, and flush that consumers expect. Look for the EPA's WaterSense label at leading retailers. If one in every 10 American homes upgraded a full bathroom with WaterSense labeled fixtures, combined savings would represent about 74 billion gallons of water per year.
Step # 5: Insulate Pipes for All Seasons
Take steps to prevent water loss and water damage from frozen and burst pipes. Search for pipes that are not insulated, or that pass through unheated spaces such as crawlspaces, basements or garages. Wrap them with pre-molded foam rubber sleeves or fiberglass insulation, available at hardware stores. Consider wrapping pipes with electric heating tape, but follow manufacturer's instructions carefully, and purchase heat tape with a built-in thermostat that only turns heat on when needed. Seal cracks and holes in outside walls and foundations with caulking to keep cold wind from pipes. In addition, wrap your water heater in an insulation blanket. Nearly 15 percent of an average home energy bill goes to heating water.
Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest investor-owned U.S. water
and wastewater utility company. With headquarters in
Burns Patterson, 212-980-9193
Source: American Water
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