Healthy Housing Insight

Water Efficient Fixtures and Appliances

Water conservation is one of the mosl important aspects of resource efficiency for healthy housing. The use of water-conserving fixtures and appli ances not only saves this vital resource, but _________________

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Continued from page 179

reduces the energy needed for providing potable water and treating waste water. This is especially important in rural areas which rely on wells.

In recent years, manufacturers of water fixtures and water-consuming appli ances have introduced water-conserving technologies in response to require ments in present day codes. However, there are fixtures which use significantly less water than the maximum amount permitted in codes, and there are also dramatic differences between appliances such as clothes and dish washers.

The critical fixtures and appliances to consider are typically toilets, show-erheads arid clothes washers. These account for most of the water used in a typical household. Low consumption toilets (sometimes referred to as Ultra Low-Flush, ULF, Ultra and Lite by manufacturers) use the least amount of water. Water-saving showerheads can use about half the water of conven tional types. Clothes and dish washing machines which use between one half to one third as much water as conventional types are also available.

In the summer months, lawn watering can account for an abnormally high level of water consumption. If lawns are still preferred over alternative land scaping options, then hardy strains of grass and in-ground irrigation systems should be considered.

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