Water Conservation & Reclamation
H20 is the most important molecule on earth. Our bodies are almost 75% water, and most animals do not survive very long without it. Unfortunately, clean potable water is getting harder and harder to come by. Additionally, it takes an increasing amount of energy and resources to maintain our drinking supply. We have got to make simple changes now to secure our most precious resource for the future.
Conserving water is not as glamorous as conserving energy. There is no immediate payback and it may seem to some that there is an unlimited supply of water. This is simply not the case. There are water shortages across the country. In the Gainesville and Ocala areas, where our water is obtained from the Florida Aquifer, we are lowering the water table and experiencing salt-water intrusion. Building desalination plants are expensive and consume massive quantities of energy, usually obtained from coal or oil.
There is any easy way to secure our water resources into the future. We must make simple changes in water usage and our lifestyle. Our environment provides us with enough water for all our needs; we must make an effort to not be wasteful. We can save some money by doing so, the average household spends as much as $500 per year on its water and sewer bill, but could save about $170 per year by retrofitting with water-efficient fixtures and incorporating water-saving practices.
At Sunshine Plumbing and Gas, we are leaders in the Water Conservation and Reclamation movement in North Central Florida. Whether its rainwater reclamation, grey water systems, water-efficient fixtures or house and business water audits, we can help. We can work with our designs or yours to make the future a reality.
Water Conservation Tips:
- Install High-Efficiency Toilets (HET's) or Dual Flush Toilets. Recent advancements have allowed toilets to use 20 percent less water than the current federal standard, while still providing equal or superior performance. You can save 4,000 gallons per year with this simpler, greener choice.
- Install a rainwater collection system to use for landscape irrigation or mechanical system operation. This can increase your property value and for commercial structures, lower the size of your required retention pond. One inch of rainfall produces 0.62 gallons of water for every square foot of roof space. For a 3,000 sq.-ft. house, that could mean 1,860 gallons of free water for every inch of rainwater. Rainwater collection or harvesting systems can range in size to simple barrels at each corner of the house to 500-gallon tanks; 1,000-gallon tanks; and larger gallon tanks with submersible pumps placed underground on your property. Call us to discuss designing your residential and commercial custom rainwater collection system.
- Promote the Department of Environmental Protection WaterSense program. Look for the WaterSense label to choose quality, water-efficient products.
- Repair all leaks. A leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons per day! To detect leaks in the toilet, add food coloring to the tank water. If the colored water appears in the bowl, the toilet is leaking.
- Consider purchasing a high-efficiency washing machine, which can save over 50% in laundry water and energy use. Call us to deliver and install.
- Promote the St. John's River Water Management District WaterStar Program. The program currently offers resources and incentives to builders and homebuyers who value water efficiency in new home construction.
- Irrigate more responsibly! Install simple and cheap rain gauges, install micro-jet or drip irrigation that focuses directly on the plant and reduces waste and run-off. Call us to help you switch your current irrigation to drip or micro-jet.
- Repair dripping faucets and showerheads. A drip rate of one drip per second can waste more than 3,000 gallons per year.