Easy Tricks to Save Money on Your Water Bill

Whether you’re struggling financially or one of the few rich Americans who measures his or her wealth in billions, saving more money is something we all want to do. There are some well-known tricks to saving on your energy utility bills, but we’re here to help you save money on your water bill.

We’ll discuss one chore that’s a total waste of your time and money (page 7), and another way to save two gallons per minute (page 13), but all these tricks will help you save your hard-earned money. If you’re not taking advantage of these easy tricks, your water bill will skyrocket.

Have your meter re-read

stressed woman sits with her bills on the table

Water bill outrageously high? Make sure you have your meter read. | JackF/iStock/Getty Images

One money-saving trick U.S. News & World Report suggests is having your meter re-read. An unexpected bigger bill could signal a hidden leak, but it could be an inaccurate reading. Calling your provider and asking for a new reading could lead to big savings.

Next: The trick we should all know by now

Don’t run the water while you brush your teeth

Woman brushing teeth

This easy fix can make a big difference. | gpointstudio/iStock/Getty Images

We’ve heard this one for years, but if you’re not turning off the water while brushing your teeth you could be wasting up to 200 gallons per month. Also, shutting off the water while washing your hands for 20 seconds can save up to six gallons every day, according to research from North Carolina State University.

Next: Make the most of your tap water

Keep a pitcher near the sink to collect water

Glass pitcher of water

We all could be drinking a little more water, anyway. | Amnachphoto/iStock/Getty Images

This money-saving tip might seem strange, but needlessly pouring money down the drain is strange, too. While you wait for the water from your faucet to get hot, fill a pitcher with water and put it in the fridge. When you want a cool drink of water later, you won’t have to wait. It’s a win-win.

Next: Keep it short and sweet

Take short showers

Woman with long hair taking shower

Slash your shower time to save $100 a year . | CentralITAlliance/Getty Images

U.S. News & World Report writes that cutting your showers by four minutes every time can save up to 4,000 gallons and $100 per year. It might not sound like much, but if everyone in a four-person household does this trick that’s 16,000 gallons and $400 per year.

Next: Another shower hack that helps you save right away.

Use a low-flow showerhead

woman washing her hair in the shower

After a while, you won’t miss the water pressure. | iStock/Getty Images

A low-flow showerhead delivers the same satisfying shower but uses far less water. Prices for low-flow showerheads range from $10 to $100, according to HomeTips, but you start saving money right away and you won’t have to remember to do anything while you save money on your water bill.

Next: Another faucet quick fix that sounds like a dream.

Put aerators on faucets

Faucet that's turned on

An aerator is an easy way to reduce how much water you’re using. | Naypong/Getty Images

A faucet aerator sounds like a dream, but it’s totally real. Aerators save money but don’t sacrifice water pressure. By mixing water and air, an aerator uses less water. Plus the air helps shoot the water out, so the pressure is about the same. They’re cheap and easy to install and will help you cut your consumption by hundreds of gallons per year.

Next: Slackers rejoice.

Let your dishwasher do its job

woman loading dishes into the dishwasher

Your dishwasher is, surprisingly, saving you money. | iStock.com/monkeybusinessimages

Listen up slackers, you’re going to love this one. If you have a dishwasher, use it. Stop hand-washing your dishes. According to NerdWallet, an average dishwasher uses six gallons per cycle. Meanwhile, your kitchen sink uses about two gallons per minute. So unless you have a very small job, let the dishwasher do its job and clean your dishes.

Next: It pays to go big

Fully load the dishwasher and washing machine

woman doing her laundry

Just wait until you have enough laundry before starting a load. | monkeybusinessimages/iStock/Getty Images

Speaking of the dishwasher, it works even more efficiently if you fill it up because it uses the same amount of water regardless of how many dishes are inside. The same overall rule goes for the washing machine, too. It works more efficiently when it’s more full.

Next: A quick upgrade that saves hundreds of dollars every year.

Install low-flow toilets

White toilet bowl

A low-flow toilet may really be the answer. | ThanaphatSomwangsakul/iStock/Getty Images

The toilet is basically designed to inflate your water bill and drink your money. Just look at these staggering numbers from the Alliance for Water Efficiency:

  • Older toilets use 3.6 gallons per flush
  • A family of four that flushes the toilet 20 times a day total uses roughly 18 gallons each or 72 gallons total.
  • In a year, that family of four flushes more than 26,000 gallons.

Our family of four, if they use newer low-flow toilets, flushes about 1.6 gallons each time and 11,000 gallons in a year.
If you can’t afford to buy new toilets for every bathroom, try this hack to reduce the amount of water and to save money on your water bill.

Next: Toilet tip No. 2

Don’t flush every time

Man holding a roll of toilet paper looking at a toilet

You can’t argue that this doesn’t work. | BrianAJackson/Getty Images

We understand there are times when you can’t get around flushing a toilet. We don’t need to discuss those situations. An easy way to save money on your water bill is not flushing every time you go. Just remember the saying, “If it’s yellow, let it mellow; if it’s brown, flush it down.” It might take time to get used to this one, but it works.

Next: Big upfront cost, but you get long-term savings.

Buy Energy Star appliances

Person pressing buttons on their dishwasher

Are your appliances the most efficient out there? | iStock/Getty Images

Washing machines from before 2003 are less efficient than newer models, and, according to Energy Star, they eat up $2.9 billion in energy and water every year. If you’re using an older washer, it’s costing you an average of $190 per year.

Energy efficient dishwashers cost just $35 dollars to run per year and save nearly 3,900 gallons of water over their lifetimes.

Buying new appliances is a big cost up front, but in the long run, using efficient machines is an easy way to save money on your water bill.

Next: Recycle, to the max.

Reuse your cups and dishes

woman reaching for her glass of water while in her bed

Anybody can follow this easy guideline. | iStock.com/cyano66

Unless you’re a camel, you’re going to need to drink water throughout the day. Instead of getting a new glass each time, just reuse the same glass for one or two days. Did your sandwich leave just a few crumbs on your plate? It’s probably safe to use that same plate again later. In each scenario, you cut down on how many dirty dishes you have to wash, and you save money on your water bill.

Next: Conserving water has never been easier.

Don’t defrost foods in the sink

Frozen food in the refrigerator

Defrosting in the refrigerator or microwave makes more sense. | iStock.com/BravissimoS

As we mentioned earlier, your kitchen sink probably pours out two gallons every minute. So if you’re using running water to defrost frozen foods, you’re basically wasting water for no good reason. Thawing frozen food in the refrigerator or microwave is more efficient and much more water friendly.

Next: A water-saving tip you have to be careful about.

Water your plants

Woman Sprays Plants In Flowerpots

You might be able to salvage some water for your plants. | IPGGutenbergUKLtd/iStock/Getty Images

Chances are you’re going to be doing laundry and washing some dishes no matter what. If you’re careful about it, you can use old dishwater and water from the washing machine to water outdoor plants. The University of California has some tips, but if you’re diligent and devoted this is a great way to save money on your water bill.

Next: Give your car some TLC.

Visit a commercial car wash that recycles water

Man washing off an old Volkswagen Beetle

There are plenty of places that recycle their water if you know where to look. | Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images

Believe it or not, there is a right way and a wrong way to wash your car, according to these tips from a professional. Commercial car washes are experts at water recycling, and you can save anywhere between 60 and 80 gallons per car wash by taking it to a pro.

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