According to the Environmental Protection Agency, toilets, showers and faucets combined represent two-thirds of all indoor water use, and toilets are the biggest water guzzler of all. Here are five things to keep in mind as you shop for a new, efficient toilet:
A high-efficiency toilet (HET) is defined as a fixture that uses 20 percent less water than the 1.6 gallons per flush (gpf) requirement set by the government. Though still voluntary, HETs are becoming a significant part of the marketplace as manufacturers recognize the compelling need for water conservation and water authorities incorporate them into their toilet replacement programs. You’ll save the most water with an HET.
Do the Dual Flush
A dual-flush toilet offers two different flush volumes: a little flush and a big flush. Popular in Europe and Asia, and mandated in Australia, dual-flush toilets are increasingly recognized for their commonsense approach to water conservation as well as their effectiveness. While many manufacturers offer them, none offers more than Caroma, the Australian company that invented the technology 25 years ago and offers 30 models of dual-flush toilets.
A family of four using dual-flush toilets can save 13,000 gallons of water per year compared to the single-flush model installed after 1994, and 52,000 gallons of water compared to even older toilets. If every home replaced its single-flush with dual-flush toilets, 3.9 trillion gallons of water per year could be saved.
Make Water Sense
The EPA’s new WaterSense labeling program guides consumers to the most water-efficient products. Only HETs qualify for WaterSense; and only those certified in independent laboratory testing to meet rigorous criteria for both performance and water efficiency are awarded the label. Caroma now offers a line of 29 WaterSense toilets.
Install With Ease
Select a new toilet that will cover the footprint of your old unit to avoid the need to replace or repair the floor. For example, Caroma models are designed to fit over most other footprints, making them an ideal choice for retrofitting.
Save Some Money
Many local water authorities offer significant rebates, sometimes even free toilets, to customers who trade in their old toilets for more environmentally friendly models. Check your local water authority Web site.
In addition to replacing an older toilet with a newer, more efficient one, other environmentally friendly improvements you can make in the bathroom include switching to a low-flow showerhead, which according to the EPA will save 18,250 gallons of water a year; and switching out standard aerators for reduced-flow ones. You should also check your faucets for leaks. Just one drippy faucet can waste up to 13 gallons every day. And you might not hear it draining your wallet until it’s too late. The best way to catch sneaky leaks is to check your water meter. Turn off all the water in the house; then look at the meter to make sure the needle isn’t moving.
To learn more about dual flush technology, how to save water and to find a store close to you, visit www.caromausa.com.