August 27, 2012

Guest Post: Water-Saving Fixtures - What to Look For


Thanks to 3 Mountains Plumbing, in Portland, Oregon for this informative guest post!

The term water saving is no longer synonymous with “no pressure” or “personally inefficient.” As
advancing technologies make eco-consciousness an increasingly integral part of life, water-saving
bathroom fixtures can now reduce your environmental impact – and your utility bills – without
sacrificing comfort or convenience. The latest advances in water-efficient plumbing are not only highly
functional but beautiful when it counts.

The next time you’re in the market for water-saving fixtures, keep the following in mind:

Low-Flow Toilets

The toilets of yesterday flushed up to 5 gallons of water, but that changed in the 1990s when models
were designed to flush no more than 1.6 gallons of water. The first generations of low-flow toilets were
ineffective, however, much to consumer disappointment.

Today’s low-flow toilets employ new design features to help reduce friction and help waste make its
way out of the bowl. Such features include glazed trapways; 3-inch flush valves; and in some cases
pressurized air in the tank to help enhance the force of the water moving into the bowl. When shopping
for a low-flow toilet, look for one that has a dual-flush option, which allows you to control the amount
of water you flush based on the type of waste. Today’s standard low-flow toilet has a 1.28-gallon-per-
flush rating, and the dual flush ratings go as low as .6 gallons per flush for the ‘liquid only’ option. With
the right low-flow toilet, you can save up to $100 per year in utility costs.


Programmable Showers

A revolution in plumbing, programmable showers allow you to set your ideal water temperature,
delivery method and flow level. This prevents you from wasting water as you adjust the valves to find
the perfect temperature. When shopping for a programmable shower, look for one that’s backed by a
state or national green building standards code and allows you to save multiple user presets.

Flow-Optimized Faucet Aerators (and Shower Heads)

The latest flow-optimized faucet aerators help save water without sacrificing pressure. The air that’s
injected into the flow of water reduces the flow rate from 2.2 gallons per minute to 1.5 gallons per
minute, while maintaining optimal pressure. Depending on the aerating model you purchase, you can
cut back on your water use from a single bathroom tap by up to 32 percent.

The good news for homeowners is that a luxury bathroom no longer has to be a wasteful one. Consult
your local plumber about the latest water-saving bathroom fixtures to learn which would work best in
your home.

 3 Mountains Plumbing, servicing all of the Portland metro area, is a fully licensed and bonded plumbing contractor that specializes in Service Plumbing and Remodeling Plumbing for homes and businesses.