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ARE WATERSENSE PRODUCTS WORTH IT?

ARE WATERSENSE PRODUCTS WORTH IT?

Our Future Depends on Them

It is impossible to live in California and not be aware of how our most precious commodity, water, is dwindling and disappearing. Our drought affected state changed some of the Federal rules regarding plumbing fixtures in 2015 to make certain water efficient units compulsory. I was recently looking for new kitchen faucets and noticed that many models could not be shipped to CA as the water flow was too fast.

CALIFORNIA REGULATIONS

Standards impose a maximum on the amount of water that can be used to flush a toilet and how fast water can flow out of your taps and showerheads. These flow rates are described as gallons per flush  (gpf) for toilets or gallons per minute (gpm) for faucets .

In April 2015, the California Energy Commission approved new efficiency standards, changing the flow rates as follows:

  • Residential faucets changed from 2.2 to 1.2 gpm, cutting the flow rate in half
  • Kitchen faucets changed from 2.2 gpm to 1,8 gpm, with a possible increase to 2.2 when you may, for example, be using a spray.

If you have noticed that water does not gush out of faucets in public restrooms that is because they must not exceed a flow rate of 0.5 gpm.

CALIFORNIA LEADS THE PACK

California now leads the nation with standards that are even more stringent than the EPA’s WaterSense Program. Once established after the first year, these new standards could save over 100 billion gallons of water per year according to the California Energy Commission. Just think of it. 100 billion!  That is a huge amount of water simply by adjusting flow.

WATERSENSE PRODUCTS

The WaterSense label makes it very easy for consumers to identify water saving products. Any conscientious bathroom designer or bath remodeler should be advising their clients to select water efficient products as a matter of urgency. The fixtures save water and therefore save you money. The initial extra cost of these fixtures is relatively small.

WORTH EVERY DROP SAVED

With a water situation as serious as we are experiencing now, even small water savings are worth it. The new range of water efficient products can save billions of gallons if everyone gets onboard. Commit to purchasing only water efficient products for your home improvement plans whether in the kitchen, bathroom or elsewhere, and you are committing to saving our world. That is no small consideration. It is commendable and necessary.

By Jane Noble