It is hard to imagine that around 1 in 10 people do not have access to safe drinking water.
Water is a precious commodity that we should not take for granted. And with water bills rising in many areas in the USA, it pays to pay attention to the best ways to save water. One of the most obvious places is in the kitchen. Here are some hints and tips.
Use a Water Filter
Attach one to your tap. This can help prevent harmful lead and other substances from leaching into water that has been sitting in old pipes.
Own a Range of Basins
Own one basin for soaking, another for rinsing and another for water collection for garden, plants and cooking such as boiling pasta. If you run the tap to make it hot or cold, or to try to flush the pipe because you are concerned about lead, capture that water in the basin and use as needed.
Don’t Let the Tap Run
You are flushing water, and money, down the drain.
Install a Low-Flow Faucet on Your Sink
Low-flow faucets flow at 1.5 gallons per minute, compared with conventional ones which flow at 5 gallons per minute.
Wash Vegetables and Fruits in Your Basin
Use a basin of your gathered water and a vegetable brush to wash your produce. Let the food soak for 10 minutes if you are concerned about pesticide residue.
Don’t Drown Your Foods
Use just enough for cooking. Cover your pasta or potatoes with just enough water to cook. Try steaming your vegetables to lock in flavor and nutrients and use less water.
Use the Cooking Water on Your Plants
Drain your pasta or vegetables in a colander and collect the water into a basin. Let it cool down and use it in your garden.
Eat More Soups and Stews
All the water you use will cook the food, preserve the nutrition, help hydrate you, and fill you up - all at the same time.
Be Careful with Dishwashers
They can use up a lot of water, especially if they are not water efficient and you run them when they are not completely full. If you wash up by hand, don’t run your water, and use the two-basin method to wash and rinse. Use a mild green detergent such as the Ecover line of products, and use the waste water for your garden or plants.
Consider a Super-Efficient Dishwasher
Keeping in mind what was just said about dishwashers, if you have a large family and cook a lot, look for an energy-efficient and water-efficient model and run it only when it is full. Cut the steam dry cycle and dry by hand to save energy and water. The most efficient models will use only around 5 gallons of water per load. The average American uses 20 gallons of water when they wash their dishes if they are not vigilant.
Hydration is important. Keep a water pitcher in the fridge for cold water so you won’t let the tap run and make ice regularly. Use stainless steel water bottles instead of plastic. Change the filter on your tap regularly. Most will remove 99% of any substances that might be cause for concern in your water.
Use these tips to help save water and see your water bill reduce.