Three Simple Tips for Conserving Water

If there's one thing that's likely to shape how the Texas Hill Country and San Antonio areas grow and change in the next few decades, it's water—or access to it, at least. Water has, for all intents and purposes, supplanted oil as the South Texas version of liquid gold, and we're already seeing the effects of over-development and excessive use on local water tables and the Edwards Aquifer.

As a result, we all have a stake in moderating water use and ensuring our recharge systems can do the job. Besides, there's no better incentive to conserve water than your monthly utility bills, which probably won't be going down anytime soon. The good news is that water conservation is an easy task using the following methods.

Install low-flow showerheads, faucets, and toilets

In the past, low-flow products carried a sketchy reputation, largely thanks to poor construction and questionable performance. What's the good of having low-flow products if you have to use them two or three times as much to achieve the desired results?

Thankfully, today's low-flow showerheads, faucets, and toilets work incredibly well—you may not even notice the difference except when your water bill arrives. Low-flow showerheads, for example, can reduce water use by up to 50% over old fixtures; all together, low-flow products can cut your water use by around two-thirds. At today's rates, that's not chump change.

McMillin homeowners have peace of mind knowing that low-flow products are standard in their homes; we won't tell anyone if you take the occasional long shower.

Landscape for low water use

An easy way to do this is to use plants that are native to the Texas Hill Country and drought-resistant grasses (McMillin uses only grasses approved by the San Antonio Water System, or SAWS.). Hearty plants like persimmon, pittosporum, forsythia, hollies, and live oak trees can be used and have the added benefit of maximizing curb appeal.

Moreover, make sure you're watering your plants more efficiently and effectively. Water your lawn only late at night or early in the morning, when the ambient air is cooler, to reduce loss to evaporation. Additionally, set up drip irrigation systems for garden and flower beds; these systems can reduce watering costs up to one-third.

Upgrade now, save lots down the road

By that we mean installing an automatic sprinkler system or recirculating hot water pump; both of these are options offered on all McMillin homes. Automatic sprinklers tend to be far more efficient in delivering the right amount of water to just the right place. Plus, you don't have to spend your time hauling hoses and tramping through the grass.

Hot water circulation systems can save up to 20,000 gallons of water per year by making hot water instantly available at any faucet in your home—no more waiting on the water to warm up.

For more tips on conserving water in your home, plus other great information on energy conservation and living green, visit McMillin Green.

Tagged in : San Antonio   Green Living