15 Green Plumbing Solutions to Follow in Your Home or Business
Human activities have been steadily chipping away at the health of the environment for decades even hundreds of years, since the industrial revolution, so anything that can be done to help reduce our negative impact on the Earth, should be done.
One of the key issues at hand is water usage and we have compiled a list of green plumbing solutions that will help you help the planet. Green plumbing solutions are eco-friendly solutions for homes and businesses regarding water supply, water use and wastewater output.
Many of us are on the lookout for eco-friendly solutions for homes and businesses. This list tackles some of the best and most sustainable plumbing tips, especially curated for those who want to be more eco-friendly.
1. Use Sustainable Pipes
Not all pipes are made the same, with some types use sturdier materials compared to others. However, sturdiness shouldn’t be the only factor to consider in pipes. Shifting to an eco-friendly plumbing system requires a careful re-evaluation of the materials used.
Be sure to stay away from pipe materials that pose health and environmental risks such as lead-lined, PVC, polybutylene, and some types of copper pipes. Materials that are safe to use are concrete, polypropylene, and newer plastic materials.
Are the pipes made of materials that have health and environmental risk? If so, a good course of action would be to consult with a professional plumber. A pro can give recommendations on what best to do.
2. Make Sure the Pipes Work Well
If your pipes are already environmentally friendly, the next step is to ensure that they’re always in excellent working order. Then, watch out for any problems that may arise.
Pipe problems can lead to leaks and drips, which lead to significant water wastage. Water conservation is a majorly important requirement for eco-friendliness.
3. Invest in New Showerheads and Taps
Taps and showers are among the biggest consumers of water in homes and commercial spaces, so investing in eco-friendly showerheads and tap attachments is an important thing to do.
It is possible to buy taps and showers that maximise water output while reducing water expenditure: It’s just a matter of how pressurised the water gets as it exit. These low-flow showerheads and taps are a great choice if you want to shift to green plumbing solutions and changing them is hassle-free.
4. Invest in Water Saving Toilet Systems
It’s not just showers and taps that can help in conserving water, toilets have also been developed to help homes and businesses lower water consumption. Shifting to green plumbing also requires careful consideration of the current toilet specifications. If it’s not eco-friendly enough, consider the following as alternatives:
- Dual-flush toilets
These toilets give the user a choice on how powerful the flush should be with settings for liquid waste and solid waste, the latter consuming more water. There are usually two flush buttons, one short flush, one long.
- Low-flow toilets
These toilets use much less water. Some models even cut down water expenditure by at least two-thirds of the normal amount.
- Sink-toilet hybrids
These convert the toilet tank into a sink, which helps conserve even more water. Dirty water from the sink is what the toilet uses for flushing. Don’t worry about the sink’s cleanliness since the water is perfectly safe to use.
If you need help choosing from these products, talk to a licensed professional plumber who can give useful advice on what would be suitable for your home or business.
5. Be Careful with What’s Flushed Down the Toilet
It pays to be especially mindful of the things that are flushed down the toilet. Only human waste products should go down; every other type of waste should go to a waste receptacle.
This is particularly important because things that are flushed down eventually go back into the environment. Plastic wastes take a long time to degrade and paper isn’t exactly safe either, as fibres or chemicals from paper wastes can also be harmful to the environment.
6. Consider Installing a Bidet
Bidets are common in Asian countries, and many Australian homes and commercial establishments are now following suit. This popularity is warranted since bidets are an excellent green plumbing solution. Having a bidet installed means that toilet paper use is drastically cut down.
This is a significant development since the toilet paper manufacturing industry is not environmentally friendly. The industry uses a lot of clean water and cuts down a lot of trees. Cutting down on toilet paper also helps reduce the demand for the product, making the toilet even more sustainable in the long run.
7. Invest in An Eco-Friendly Washing Machine and Dishwasher
Washing machines and dishwashers can be swapped for more eco-friendly versions. Since these are connected directly to water supplies, it’s best to go for models that are more efficient with water use.
Aside from that, it also helps to look for models that don’t consume as much electricity. If you can get a model that is efficient in both water and energy consumption, that would be best.
8. Optimise Washing Machine and Dishwasher Use
Repeatedly washing small quantities of clothes and dishes can be quite wasteful with water and electricity. As such, it would help to optimise their use based on the number of things to wash.
Only set the washing machine and dishwasher on when you have full loads and try to use more efficient settings that lower water temperature and electrical consumption.
9. Look for A Green Water Heater
Water isn’t the only factor to consider when looking for green plumbing solutions. Energy expenditure is also a significant factor, so it would be wise to invest in an eco-friendly water heater.
Be sure to choose a water heater that’s energy-efficient and doesn’t emit harmful gases. Going for a tankless water heater is also great since these consume less energy. If the budget allows for it, try to go solar. Solar power is the greenest choice that everyone should be aiming for.
10. Consider using sensors
The tap hand sensors that are seen in commercial establishments are not just there for show, they also help conserve water by only letting water out when a hand is under the tap, so no water is wasted by leaving the tap on. These sensors are widely available now. There are even ones that allow the alteration of the water pressure of the tap.
For maximum eco-friendliness, why not go for a sensor that converts a regular tap into a low-flow one? All this requires is an extra attachment as the tap itself doesn’t need to be replaced.
11. Invest in Rainwater Tanks
Harvesting rainwater for household purposes is one of the best steps towards going green. This involves installing an outdoor rainwater tank that collects and stores rainwater for later use.
Of course, depending on the system, this water may not always be drinkable, but it can be particularly useful for non-drinking purposes such as toilet flushing, watering plants, composting, laundry, and landscaping.
Rainwater tanks also reduce pressure on water supply. This means that there’s a lower requirement for water processing, and it doesn’t strain natural resources.
12. Check for problems in all plumbing fixtures and related appliances
It’s not just the pipes that need constant damage checks. All plumbing fixtures need to be regularly monitored to ensure maximum functionality. Be sure to always be on the lookout for the following:
- Water pressure
Excessive water pressure can lead to water wastage. Signs of excessive water pressure include dripping taps and the forceful ejection of water.
- Toilet problems
Toilet problems can cause water to regurgitate or overflow, which leads to water wastage. This should be dealt with as soon as possible.
- Heater problems
Problems with the water heater may also be harmful to the environment. Effects include harmful emissions, excessive energy consumption, and the risk of fires. Be sure to have the heater checked if problems arise.
Any problems involving the above require immediate fixing. If that’s the case, don’t trust anyone with the job, call a professional Newcastle plumber.
13. Re-evaluate some activities
Some activities have become ingrained in many people that the harm they do isn’t immediately noticeable, but unfortunately these activities need to be consciously changed for us to become truly environmentally friendly and all of your new eco-friendly plumbing solutions could go to waste if these activities aren’t adopted:
- Minimise shower time
It’s tempting to mull around in the water while taking a bath. Many people don’t realise that all this mulling around is actually quite wasteful.
For those who want to be more environmentally conscious, limiting the time it takes to shower is a good first step. Try to not spend any more water than what is necessary to feel clean and relaxed.
- Turn off the tap
Many people are particularly guilty of this one. Brushing teeth or lathering soap while the tap is on is wasteful. As such, turning the tap off while doing these activities can dramatically reduce water consumption.
- Reduce plastic bathroom and kitchen waste
Most kitchen wastes are organic, but there are a few bits of plastic here and there. Bathroom wastes, on the other hand, are the more problematic ones. Shampoo bottles, toiletry packaging, toothbrushes, are all made of plastic and minimising the amount of plastic waste can greatly compliment green plumbing efforts.
14. Stay in The Loop
New methods of going green, not just with plumbing, pop up every year. Stay in the loop and always watch out for new methods on being environmentally conscious. This is a sure way of doing the environment some good.
15. Hire Green Companies and Products
When shifting to green plumbing solutions, be sure to use a company that walks the talk. Don’t just fully trust a supplier to provide environmentally friendly products if they’re not green-minded themselves.
Not all plumbing methods are equal. Some are destructive, some are sustainable, and some are incredibly eco-friendly. Households and businesses that want to go green should go for companies with experience in utilising sustainable plumbing methods. With this in mind, here’s a list of the things to look for in a professional plumber regarding sustainable methods:
- The company needs to be environmentally friendly. The equipment and methods that a company uses, for example, says a lot about their eco-friendliness.
- Energy-efficient equipment and methods, like ones that aren’t wasteful of resources or environmentally destructive.
- Practices that are mindful of the impact that actions have on the environment.
- Good waste reduction and recycling methods, as well as sustainable ways of managing waste.
- The use of eco-friendly plumbing products.
If these practices are apparent with a plumbing company, then it’s a good sign that they’re environmentally conscious. They’re most likely a great choice!
Apply Green Plumbing Solutions Today
Doing your part in saving the environment is a must, so make sure to follow the solutions we’ve elaborated above. If you’re in Newcastle and Hunter and are looking for a professional plumber that can help, choose one that values sustainable practices. Green Planet Plumbing is amongst the best in the area when it comes to green plumbing solutions. We use eco-friendly plumbing methods to help residences and commercial establishments operate more sustainably. Learn more about us at greenplanetplumbing.com.au or contact us on (02) 4911 9402 for enquiries.