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Thermostatic Shower Valve: Eco Tech to Save Water & Energy

Water used in the shower can account for up to 20% of your home’s total usage. So, when you’re shaving or washing your hair, those little droplets are really adding up! Most people may not be aware that today there are shower faucets with technology to help you save water. How? By having a thermostatic shower valve that shuts off the water once it reaches a certain temperature. If you are worried about safety, these provide you peace of mind because they ensure the temperature doesn’t get too high, which is key to avoiding burns.

How a Thermostatic Shower Valve Works

A thermostatic shower valve is a specialized type of valve that is designed to regulate the temperature of water in a shower. This type of valve is becoming increasingly popular as an eco-friendly way to save water. Here’s how it works: 

It has two main components – a mixing chamber and a temperature sensor. The mixing chamber is where the cold and hot water meet before going into the shower head. The temperature sensor is located in the mixing chamber and monitors the water temperature. 

When you turn on the shower, the cold and hot water flow into the mixing chamber and are mixed together. The temperature sensor then kicks in and adjusts the flow of cold and hot water accordingly to maintain a consistent water temperature. This prevents wasted water from running too hot or too cold, which can save significant amounts of water over time.

Lots of Energy in Hot Water

Water heating accounts for about 18% of the average home’s energy use. By using these valves, you’ll be using less hot water, less energy overall, and that will lower your utility bills. In fact, some estimates show that you can save up to $100 per year on your energy bills by making this switch! 

Ideally, it would be best if you were taking short showers of five to ten minutes at a time. Using one of our shower valve choices will enable you to efficiently heat the perfect amount of water for that sort of length of time. Less water means less energy and no more waiting around for the water to get hot or to cool down!

Benefits of a Thermostatic Shower Valve

1. Savings. It is designed to automatically shut the water off when it reaches the desired temperature. This means that you won’t have any water wasted by leaving the shower running too long. These shower valves also help you save energy because they maintain a consistent water temperature. This means that you won’t have to waste energy by constantly adjusting the temperature of your shower.

2. You can stay comfortable. The consistent water temperature provided by a thermostatic shower valve will help ensure that you don’t experience any sudden temperature changes that could ruin your relaxation time.

3. You can avoid scalding yourself. One of the most dangerous things about showers is the risk of scalding yourself with too-hot water. With a temperature regulating valve, you can avoid this danger.

Safety Protection

The temperature regulation of your shower leads to safety and energy efficiency. This means that you won’t have to worry about scalding yourself or wasting water by accidentally letting the water run too hot or cold.

These showerhead valves often come with a safety stop feature. This means that if the water gets too hot, the valve will automatically shut off, helping to prevent accidents or injuries.

As the world becomes more and more aware of its impact on the environment, eco-friendly technology is becoming a hot commodity. Thermostatic shower valves are one such product that is not only good for the environment but also saves you money on your water bill and has the additional benefit of safety precautions. If you are looking to save water and help the planet, these shower valves are definitely worth checking out.

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5 Simple Home Water Saving Devices

Home Water Saving Products
Home Water Saving Devices

Sometimes it’s the simplest changes that can have the biggest effect on water consumption in the home. Water saving products are low-cost but have a long-lasting effect on home energy usage and the utility bill. To make this easy change, here are 5 simple home water saving products you can install today.

Showerheads
If your showerhead can fill a bucket with 1-gallon of water in under 20 seconds, it’s time to change to an earth-friendly model.

Savings
For less than $10, you could purchase a Niagara Earth showerhead that saves up to 5,475 gallons of water annually. Low-flow showerheads also decrease energy usage, so showerheads that release 1.5 gpm (gallons per minute) save around $70 – $105 per year on the electric and gas bill.

Features
Niagara Earth Showerheads have many varying features:

  • Massage – settings range from a soft spray to an intense massage
  • “Pause” option – slows or stops the water from flowing and is especially handy when you don’t need the water to run, like while soaping up or shaving
  • Flow Control Technology – gives you consistent, even water pressure regardless of the pressure from your water system

Faucet Aerators
Faucet aerators are like caps on the tip of faucets. However, unlike caps, faucet aerators help water flow out evenly and consistently while cutting down on water and energy usage.

Savings
Faucet aerators are one of the cheapest water saving devices on the market. For an investment as low as $2, faucet aerators and earth showerheads can reduce hot water usage by up to 50%.

Kitchen
It’s recommended that kitchen faucets use aerators with a flow rate of no less than 1.5 gpm, since kitchen faucets usually need high flow rates.

Bathroom
Bathroom faucets don’t need a high flow rate and will still maintain water pressure with a .5 – 1 gpm aerator.

Toilet Tank Bank
Fill the toilet tank bank with water and hang it on the inside of the tank wall. With just that simple install you’ll save 0.8 gallons of water per flush. There is nothing to maintain, it never needs re-filling, and it even prevents odors. The product doesn’t change how your toilet functions in any way; it just saves water.

Shower Timer
As much as 25 gallons of water can be used on a 15-minute shower. Curtail the water waste with shower timers. These water saving devices are a fun, smart, and cheap way to keep everyone in the household in line with water usage.

Types
There are different types of shower timers, ranging in price from super cheap to super expensive.

  • Sand Timer – These timers can be attached to the shower wall. Some are like a hourglass and some are digital. They’re usually made to keep track of 5-10 minutes and cost as little as $3.
  • Digital Shower Timer – An digital timer measures shower time in five-minute intervals. It is installed either with a suction cup or adhesive backing. At the beginning of a shower, a blue LED light appears, and at the 4.5 minute mark, the LED light changes to red. For the last 30 seconds, the red light on the LED shower timer flashes red as a reminder. The cost of this timer is approximately $7.
  •  Digital Shower Timer with Water Consumption Calculator – Costing about $15, a digital shower timer and water calculator displays the amount of time spent as well as the amount of water consumed during the shower. It allows you to set the target amount of water to be used, and an alarm sounds once that target has been reached. This timer also can be installed with a suction cup, or hung with a lanyard.

Soil Moisture Meter
For aspiring and expert gardeners alike, the name is self-explanatory; the meters measure soil for adequate moisture. Soil moisture meters are analog-style, and read the moisture levels in the soil to prevent over-watering, a leading cause in plant death.

Most of these water saving products pay for themselves in under a year, but save you money and decrease energy usage for much longer.

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Tackle Water Demand with Water Saving Devices

The average family is wasting nearly 200 gallons of water every week through leaks, water you never even know is leaving.

Currently, 40 out of the 50 states in the US are expecting statewide water shortages within the next decade. Needless to say, we’re looking at a water crisis. To put this on a more personal scale, the average family is spending more than $1,000 annually on water bills. This doesn’t even include the amount being spent on water heating, or energy used to run appliances like the dishwasher or laundry machine. The simplest way to reduce this usage (and associated costs), is by installing items found in a water conservation kit

Shower

Water saving devices help save, at the very least, 20 percent more water in a home. Additionally, they tend to perform better than their non-efficient counterparts. For example, the eco showerhead in a water conservation kit uses only 1.5 gallons of water per minute. At the same time, it comes with 9 different spray options, and is self-cleaning. Replacing the showerhead can save enough water to amount to 88 loads of laundry. 

Faucet

The faucet is one place in the house where usage and waste are unfortunately easy to overlook. Leaving the faucet running for just 5 minutes can result in enough energy wasted to power a 60-watt light bulb. This waste also leads to 10 gallons of water literally gone down the drain. Installing faucet aerators drastically cuts down on this kind of waste to the tune of $250 over the lifetime of the aerator.

Toilet

The toilet happens to be one of the largest consumers of water in the entire home. A water conservation kit contains a few items to help combat this. Toilet Tank Banks are great water saving devices. It is installed in the toilet tank to reduce the amount of water used per flush. It does this without interfering with the toilet’s mechanics, and it prevents odors.

Without even realizing it, the average family is wasting nearly 200 gallons of water every week through leaks, water you never even know is leaving. This equals over 9,000 gallons yearly, enough water for 300 loads of laundry! The first step to solving this problem is discovering it. The toilet leak tablets that come in the water kit do just that. They change the color of the water if a leak is present. Another great tool for combatting toilet water waste is the tank bank.

Saving water at home doesn’t have to mean a complete shift in your lifestyle. A water conservation kit comes with a variety of everyday products that are not only simple to install, but can save thousands of gallons and dollars over their lifetimes.

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Conservation Kits Provide Instant Savings

As the climate crisis on our planet has become a climate emergency, a lot of us are looking for different ways to improve our carbon footprint. While this may initially seem like a daunting and expensive task, it truly isn’t. There are many small ways to start saving both energy and water around your home or building that won’t break the bank. Conservation kits are prepared with these types of savings in mind, and the items they contain provide instant savings once installed.

Improving Energy Efficiency

According to Time.com, “On average, remote workers have seen a $40-50 monthly increase in their energy costs—or as much as $600 a year.” With energy bills steadily on the rise, employing measures that can produce savings right away is even more pressing. Common items you’ll find in conservation kits include:

  • LED Light Bulbs, which use up to 80% less energy than their incandescent counterparts
  • Closed Cell Foam to limit drafts and heat from entering through doors
  • Outlet Gaskets that block air leaks from outlets
  • Rope caulk to seal air from entering through windows
tidy room filled with furnitures

Help Me Save Water

Each day, the average home in the United States uses approximately 80-100 gallons of water at home. A surprising number, right? When you consider the amount of times we wash our hands and dishes, flush the toilets, and even shower, this number really begins to take shape. Let’s take a step back, and see how we can bring this number down.

  • Low flow aerators reduce the amount (but not the pressure) of water coming from faucets. Their flow rates range from 0.5-2.0 gallons of water per minute.
  • Low flow shower heads follow this same concept, except with the shower. Many of these shower heads are also self-cleaning.
  • A toilet tank bank is placed in the toilet tank to limit the amount of water used per flush.
  • Outdoor water savers allow you to expand water savings outside of the home and into your gardens.

Saving energy and water at home, or in your building, can actually be quite simple. With a few quick installations of items found in conservation kits you can be well on your way to helping the climate and your wallet at the same time.

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Using A Green Loan for Home Efficiency

brown wooden table and chairs

“Creating a green home is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint right where you live, while at the same time placing money right back into your pocket.”

Our homes are responsible for approximately 20 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the US. While some may want to add energy saving upgrades, many have held back because of the costs. Adding energy and water efficiency products to your home or building just got a little bit easier. Using a green loan, you can easily get started on completing those projects that will increase the overall efficiency and savings in your space.

How does a green loan work?

This type of loan can be used to complete major renovations, such as installing tankless water heaters, solar panels and energy efficient doors and windows. Additionally, the funds can also be used to make faster green improvements, including:

  • Low-flow showerheads
  • Low-flow aerators
  • Eco toilets
  • LED lights
  • Adding or updating insulation
  • Programmable thermostats

When searching for products that meet energy and water efficiency requirements, look for the Energy Star and WaterSense labels.

How much can I save?

The products installed and projects completed with a green loan can certainly help lower your utility bills. At the highest level, LEED-certified homes can save an average of 15% on the cost of energy annually. Taking into account that the average family in the United States spends between $2,000-$3,100 on energy and water bills every year, that can equal savings of roughly $300-$465.

Creating a green home is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint right where you live, while at the same time placing money right back into your pocket. Check with your local bank or credit union to find out more information on getting started with one of these loans.

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Install a Faucet Regulator for Simple and Immediate Savings

On average, a newly installed faucet aerator is designed to use as much as 2.5 gallons of water each minute left running. While this may not sound like a whole lot initially, this can equal to thousands of gallons of water used and wasted by the end of the year. With wasted water comes wasted energy used to heat it, and rising costs for both. Installing a faucet regulator (also called an adapter) is a quick way to realize immediate savings on all three without losing pressure. Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the best one for you.

What kind of aerator does my faucet have?

Faucets are fitted with either male or female threading. A designated male aerator will have the threading on the outside of it. The standard thread size for a male aerator in the United States is 15/16”-27. The threading for a female aerator is placed on the inside of the aerator. Size is typically 55/64”-27. Once you know the type of aerator being adjusted, you can find the perfectly fitted faucet regulator. Additionally, adapters are available to convert the aerator from male to female, and vice versa.

Water Savings

Once you’ve looked over the kind of aerator to be retrofitted, the next subject to decide is the amount of water you’re hoping to save. As well as many threading options, a faucet regulator is available with many options for savings. The lowest amount of water that can be used through an adapter is 0.5 gallons per minute, and the largest flow rate is 2.2 gallons of water.

The regulators are designed with savings and pressure in mind to allow for the most savings without the loss of comfort. Simply twist in to your faucet or aerator, and you’re ready to start saving!

faucet regulator
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How to Fit an Aerator into Your Faucet

The average household faucet consumes over 2 gallons of water each minute it is left on. This may sound small, until you consider this can equal up to 3,000 gallons of wasted water each year. High efficiency aerators can help you save water and deliver a steady and forceful stream of water, while saving at the same time. A high-quality faucet aerator adapter helps you connect a water saving aerator to almost any common faucet styles. Here’s what you need to know before you get started.

Sizing It Up

Nickel and dime is the phrase to keep in mind here. Start by removing the washer and insert from the inside of the aerator. Grab a nickel, and place it over the aerator. If the size is close to that of a nickel, you have a regular size aerator. An aerator that a dime can fit in is a junior-size aerator.

Male and Female Threading

Determining the threading is slightly easier than discovering the size. A female threaded aerator will be screwed onto the faucet with the threads on the inside of the aerator. A male aerator has the threading placed on the outside, top of the aerator. Pretty simple, right?

Different Streams

Another thing to consider when choosing a faucet aerator adapter is the type of water stream it produces:

Spray stream resembles the pattern distributed by a shower head. This type is ideal for bathrooms in commercial spaces.

Aerated/Bubble stream works by mixing the water with air. This pattern is softer than the other options, and produces no splashing. This type is found commonly in residential environments.

Laminar stream is great for spaces that require high flow, and no splashing, such as health-care establishments.

The smallest of changes can get you on the road to having a major impact on water consumption in your community. Doing a task as simple as fitting a faucet aerator adapter over your faucets can save up to 3,000 gallons of water each year. This can be done without much effort, and without sacrificing any water pressure.

Faucet Aerator Adapter
Faucet Aerator Adapter
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Fix a Leak Week

fix a leak

Household leaks can waste more than 1 trillion gallons of water annually nationwide due to indoor and outdoor leaks! WaterSense partners are encouraging Americans to become leak detectives during Fix a Leak Week, March 18-24, 2019, and save more than 10,000 gallons of water per home on average by taking three simple steps: check, twist, and replace:

1.Check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter changes at all, you probably have a leak. Check your sprinkler system for winter damage. Of the many types of water waste in the average home, toilet leaks are the most common, and often the most costly. Toilet leak detection tablets will help you detect silent leaks. Simply drop the dye tablet into the toilet tank and lightly stir it. After approximately 15 minutes have passed, check the bowl for color. If color appears, there is a toilet water leak. Dye tablets are non-toxic and FD&C safe. If you have a leak, you will most likely need to replace the flapper.

2.Twist faucet valves, tighten pipe connections, and secure your hose to the spigot. For additional savings, twist a WaterSense labeled aerator onto each bathroom faucet to save water without noticing a difference in flow.

3.Replace old and leaky plumbing fixtures with WaterSense labeled models, which are independently certified to use 20 percent less water and perform as well or better than standard models. You can also use a moisture meter and a hose faucet timer to prevent over watering.

For more information on Fix a Leak Week and to see if there are any events in your area, please visit the EPA’s website.

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Choosing the Right Faucet Aerator

Choosing the right bathroom or kitchen aerator is one of the easiest steps you can take to save water. However, selecting the right aerator can be challenging because there are so many different flow rates and sizes to consider. A bath aerator typically screws into the faucet spout so it needs to be the correct size and threading. We’ve listed four factors to consider to help your narrow down the aerator that will meet your needs.

Threading

This is probably the most important factor to consider since it will determine if the aerator will fit your faucet spout. The threading will depend upon which country you are in. The first thing to determine is if you need female or male threading. A female aerator has the threads on the inside of the aerator, while a male aerator has threads on the outside of the aerator. In the United States, the thread size are 55/64″-27 for standard-sized female and 15/16″-27 for standard-sized male. A dual thread aerator is very flexible in that it allows you to fit into both male and female threaded sprouts since it has threads on both the inside and outside.

femaleandmale

Flow Rate

A low flow aerator helps you realize water savings by restricting the water flow rate. To be classified as a low flow aerator and have industry certifications such as WaterSense labeled or CalGreen compliant, it should have a flow rate of less than 2.0 gallons per minute (gpm). The technology has improved significantly to compensate for fluctuations in pressure, so that a low flow aerator does not feel like it’s not delivering sufficient water. To seriously cut down on water usage, consider a flow rate of between 0.5 gpm to 1.5 gpm.

Stream/Spray Type

A low flow bubble faucet aerator restricts the water flow from the faucet. This type of aerator adds air to the water flow to enhance the water stream to give the sensation of a larger flow even though it’s dispensing less water. It is ideal for use in both bathroom and kitchens. A bubble faucet aerator typically has a cross mesh screen to act as a flow restrictor and aerate the water. A needle spray aerator produces a shower like pattern when dispensing water. Needle spray aerators are the only choice when you are selecting an ultra low flow faucet aerator e.g. 0.5 gallons per minute (gpm) or lower. Needle spray aerators provide a good coverage of water when washing hands and so are often preferred in commercial applications. They have tiny holes around the base of the aerator through which the water is dispensed. A Laminar Stream delivers a non aerator stream. It is typical found is hospitals/health care facilities where a strong non splashing stream is desired.  

Size

Aerators come in 3 different sizes : regular size, junior or small size and tom thumb size. The regular size is the largest and the housing is the size of a quarter, the junior/small size is the size of a nickel, and the tom thumb is equivalent circumference of a penny.

Keep these factors in mind and you’ll spend less time worrying about returning those wrong aerator, and more time enjoying the extra money you’ll be saving on water savings with a low flow aerator.

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EPA’s WaterSense Program Creates Big Savings

watersenselogoThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program, works to protect the future of our nation’s water supply by offering people simple ways to use less water.

By promoting the value of water efficiency, providing consumers with easy ways to save water, and encouraging innovation in manufacturing, WaterSense has helped consumers save a total of 1.5 trillion gallons of water and more than $32.6 billion in water and energy bills! By the end of 2015, reductions of 212 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity and 78 million metric tons of carbon dioxide were achieved through the use of WaterSense labeled products.

Using WaterSense labeled faucets or faucet accessories could reduce a household’s faucet water use by more than 500 gallons annually—that’s enough water to do 14 loads of laundry.

Even if only 1 in every 10 homes in the United States installed WaterSense labeled faucets or faucet accessories in their bathrooms, it could save 6 billion gallons of water, and more than $50 million in the energy costs to supply, heat, and treat that water.

One of our best sellers is the Neoperl Perlator Regular Dual Thread 1.5 GPM Aerator.  Whether your looking to change to a water saving flow or just replace a existing faucet housing, you will enjoy the benefits of NEOPERL’s patented anti-liming construction. Using a 1.5 gallons per minute aerator will save you up to 30% water (in comparison to a 2.2 gpm). Energy savings can also add up by heating less water.

WaterSense labeled toilets use 20 percent less water per flush but perform as well as or better than today’s standard toilets. We recommend the Niagara Stealth Dual Flush Elongated Toilet Bowl. The Stealth technology has truly changed the market in that it features a low-profile body, ultra quiet flush, and patented hydraulic technology. The low friction, smooth ceramic surface of the toilet bowl allows for clearing with every flush. By providing two flush options, they reduce water consumption and costs like no other models out there! Check this link for available rebates.

Water is crucial for the survival of the earth and all its’ inhabitants, but there is a limited in supply. The Earth might seem like it has abundant water, but in fact less than 1 percent is available for human use.  We all need to do our part to limit our household water usage, and upgrading to WaterSense devices in your home is a great place to start.