Keep Showering Better, Athens

This week’s post was written by WCO intern Laura Keys.

October was “Shower Better” month, but even though it’s over, you don’t have to stop showering better!

A low-flow showerhead that puts out 1.25gpm of water

For about 3 weeks in October, the Athens-Clarke County Water Conservation Office partnered with some local hardware stores to distribute 500 low-flow shower heads to county residents. It would have been for all 4 weeks of October, but we ran out of them before the end of the month! People were really excited about getting new showerheads, and it was surprising how many people who got one said, “Perfect timing, my old one just stopped working.”

So even though ACC isn’t distributing free showerheads at the moment, a new showerhead won’t set you back too far. They range in cost from about $6 to $50, about the same as non-low-flow ones, but they’ll help save you money starting immediately.

Take this back of the envelope calculation: assuming 4 showers a week, lasting 10 minutes each, with a 2.5 gallon per minute (gpm) showerhead, and a water cost of $4.84 per 1,000 gallons, you’d spend around $25.17 for a year’s worth of shower water. By switching to a low-flow 1.25 gpm showerhead, you’ll spend just $12.58 on shower water, which makes up for the new showerhead and saves you money in the future as well. (And we’re not even going into savings on heating costs.) If you have a really old showerhead or if you shower more frequently, your savings will be even bigger!watersense-label-300x230

For big savings on any appliances that use water, look for the EPA’s WaterSense label. (It’s like the EnergyStar certification, except for efficient water use.) If you already have a low-flow showerhead and want to take your water conservation to the next level, try taking shorter showers or turning off the water while lathering your hair. Or be a true daredevil and try cooler temperature showers, which are great for your hair and skin… if you can stand them! Instead of “Shower Better Month” let’s try for a “Shower Better Year.”

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