A few months ago we wrote about low-flow fixtures that save considerable amounts of water while you’re in the shower. But what about the habit that I’m betting most of you have?
Before hopping in the shower, how many of you run the water until its warm enough? Guilty. Anyone do anything else while you wait? Maybe use the toilet, brush your teeth, or even shave? By the time you’re done you’ve likely sent down the drain several gallons of the hot water for which you were waiting.
A company called ShowerStart has a solution to this habit: Its Evolve line of showerheads features the ShowerStart technology, a sensor that actually turns the shower stream to a trickle once it has warmed up to 95 degrees. When you’re ready to hop in, a simple flick of the switch resumes the full flow water. Its that simple.
For those of you unwilling to either replace your current showerhead or drop the cash for one of their premium models, they’ve thought of something for you too…its called the Ladybug. It’s a device that you affix in line between your showerhead and shower arm that easily brings the ShowerStart technology into your bathroom.
Unfortunately its low-flow offering could be improved (currently its RoadRunner model is the lone showerhead in that category). But even the devices offering the “maximum flow rate allowable by law” still save the homeowner an estimated $75 and 2,700 gallons of water while the Roadrunner saves $230 and 7665 gallons.
The company has received some criticism for offering a product that encourages people to let technology solve efficiency problems, especially when slight modifications in behavior would suffice. Point taken, BUT, for the vast majority of people who won’t change, this is a great solution.
Now, let me see if I can’t get my hands on one of these nifty devices to try out…
Let’s face it - the toilet is an important fixture in our homes. Not only is it a necessity but, according to MotherEarthNews.com, we could save approximately 900 billion gallons of water each year if everyone in America replaced their toilets with low-flow ones.
In 1992 federal law set new requirements stating that new toilets meet a 1.6 gallons per flush (gpf) standard—a dramatic reduction from the old 5 to 7 gpf toilets. People had a hard time believing that a 1.6 gpf toilet works just as well as a 5 gpf toilet. But a lot more goes into the functioning of a toilet than the amount of water used per flush. Let’s take a look at some low-flow toilet industry standards that both meet peoples’ expectations and their water conserving benefits can be put to use! Also, it is helpful to know the terms associated with toilet performance so as to make your decision a little bit easier. Lastly, we will discover who is on top in the toilet trade.
Continue Reading »
Changing out your old water fixtures for low-flow ones is easy and fairly inexpensive. But if you have been avoiding this task because you are afraid of losing precious water pressure, don’t worry, low-flow fixtures have come a long way.
How Much Can I Possibly Save?
Taking a quick 5 minute shower can use up to 40 gallons of water, according to FlexYourPower.org . Replacing your showerhead with a low-flow fixture can save up to 80% of that water per shower!
So the answer seems easy: replace your water-wasting fixtures with low-flow fixtures. But most of us are still reluctant to do so because a low-flow shower suggests low pressure, which doesn’t sound too attractive in the morning. However, manufacturers have recognized this and have developed low-flow showerheads that feel just like their less-efficient, conventional counterparts.
Continue Reading »
Is Radiant Floor Heating For You?
Radiant Floor Heating seems all the rage lately, but how does it work? Why is it used in green and energy efficient homes? And is it a better choice than a Forced Hot Air system?
Radiant Floor Heating can be installed under any type of floor but slab, tile, and masonry floors are the best because they store heat most efficiently. Hardwood floors also work well with a Radiant Floor Heating System, but carpet should be avoided because it essentially insulates the floor, reducing the heat that enters the room.
Continue Reading »