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8 Steps to a Greener Bathroom

Last Updated on October 18, 2011

The bathroom is one of the most frequently used spaces in your home. Whether you’re getting ready for work in the morning, or for bed at night, or taking a relaxing bath or shower, you’re certain to spend a portion of your day there. The bathroom can also be one of the least energy efficient rooms in your home if you don’t take the necessary steps to keep it “green” and eco-friendly. Here are 8 tips to help you do just that.

Toilets can be responsible for up to 30 percent of household water usage. Older toilets are especially guilty – many using as much as seven gallons with each flush. If you happen to have an older toilet in your bathroom, you can very easily displace a bit of the water that’s stored in the tank, and up its efficiency. Simply place a brick, or a tightly sealed container filled with pebbles or sand, in the tank. That’s all there is to it.

A leaky toilet is even more of a water wasting nightmare. Some data reveals that a leaky toilet can be responsible for up to 200 gallons of wasted water per day. Of course this is a terrible situation for the environment if left unchecked, but, can you imagine the damage being done to your water bill? It’s a simple thing to test for leaks. Just add some food coloring, or even instant coffee, to the water in the tank. If you can see color being released into the toilet bowl, even without being flushed, you definitely have a leak and you should try to have it repaired as soon as possible.

The hot water heater is another guilty party when it comes to waste. You can conserve energy, and still have plenty of hot water, by lowering the the temperature setting from 140 degrees to 120 degrees. It’s also a good idea to insulate the hot water heater and pipes. When it’s time to replace it, go ahead and invest a bit more money and purchase an energy efficient model. Your initial investment will repaid in no time at all through substantially lower energy bills.

Get into the habit of shutting off the water while brushing teeth or shaving. You can also turn the shower off while you soap up and shampoo your hair. Installing low-flow showerheads and sink fixtures can reduce water usage by up to 3,000 gallons per person, per year – definitely a wise investment.

When it’s time for new bath towels, wash up the old ones and donate them to a veterinary clinic or animal shelter. Any place that cares for animals is almost always in need of extra towels and will most certainly welcome your donation.

Replace your vinyl shower curtain with one made from organic cotton or some other type of natural material such as hemp, or bamboo. It’s better for the environment, and the added bonus is, the natural materials can be laundered.

Place a small box for recycling next to the bathroom trash can. This will make it easier to ensure that items such as empty toilet paper rolls and shampoo bottles are recycled along with everything from the kitchen and other rooms of the house.

Replace incandescent bulbs with fluorescent. The quality of light is much better, especially for applying cosmetics and other things such as styling your hair or tweezing your eyebrows, and they’re also much more energy efficient and longer lasting.

Try out some, or all, of these tips today, and begin seeing a difference in your energy bills!

This article is by Amanda Knox-Reynolds, a freelance writer for Advance Me Inc. America’s leading provider of the business cash advance – an alternative to traditional, collateral based bank loans, for small-medium sized businesses.

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