New Year’s Resolution: Save Water Without Sacrificing Your Shower

(ARA) – Thinking about making a New Year’s resolution to continue to live a greener lifestyle? In addition to using energy-efficient appliances, carrying reusable shopping totes or recycling, consider reducing your dependency on one of the most precious resources – water.

Try adopting new bathroom habits and updating your fixtures with products that will help you conserve water without sacrificing your experience. Saving water may turn out to be easier than it sounds, especially with a few simple tips.

A recent eNation survey showed 83.7 percent of people take showers for the primary purpose of relaxing and meditating. Thirty-four percent of the survey respondents said the “shower is my time for just focusing on me.” It represents a way to not only get clean, but to also escape from the stress of the day.

However, those showers, relaxing and otherwise, account for approximately 17 percent of residential indoor water use in the United States, adding up to more than 1.2 trillion gallons of water each year nationwide, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

It’s not likely you will want give up regular showers – for hygienic and emotional reasons. That’s why the shower is a space manufacturers have been studying for years. They’re working to create products that will continue to provide a satisfying shower experience while simultaneously saving water.

“Our team is continuously researching new products and technologies to balance the competing needs of conserving water while giving the user a great shower experience,” says Bob Rodenbeck, director of research and development at Delta Faucet Company. “Simply restricting the flow of water doesn’t work. Bathers will either stay in the shower longer or find a way to remove the restrictor cap. The right solution has to help bathers save water without taking away from the luxurious and enjoyable experience of the shower.”

Here are three easy tips to help you save water in the shower:

* Learn to multitask: Let’s face it, sometimes we’re just standing in the shower killing time. Whether we’re waiting for our conditioner to set in or slowly waking up under the warm water, we could be doing more.

Next time you find yourself standing idle under the stream, reach for your toothbrush and toothpaste or mouthwash and freshen up your pearly whites. Men, hang a mirror in the shower and shave your face without accidentally nicking yourself.

At the very least, hang your shirt or work outfit in the bathroom and let the steam from your hot shower release the wrinkles. That won’t help you cut back on water usage, per se, but it’ll save you time primping and the energy used to power your iron.

* Install a WaterSense-labeled showerhead: Chances are, if your showerhead is more than a year or two old, it is probably not the most efficient model. More than eight out of 10 adults haven’t changed their showerhead in the past three years, according to the eNation survey. The EPA created the WaterSense Program to help homeowners conserve water. In 2010, it introduced specifications that require a showerhead to flow at a rate of 2 gallons per minute (gpm) or less in order to be qualified as a WaterSense-labeled product. Delta Faucet has a large collection of showerheads that meet the program’s strict performance and quality criteria, including seven that feature H2Okinetic Technology. The innovative technology improves water efficiency by 40 percent, flowing at 1.5 gpm while providing the feel of an enhanced flow of 2.5 gpm.

Be resourceful: You want a hot shower, but sometimes you end up running the water for a few minutes to wait for the cold water to pass. To avoid letting that water go to waste, put a bucket or watering can under the showerhead to catch the cold water that would otherwise go down the drain. It can be reused at a later time for watering plants around the house or outside on the porch.