The Magic of Greywater Recycling and How It Can Reduce Water Bills

Have you ever given any thought to the amount of water you use up that goes down the drain still relatively clean? The average American uses close to 100 gallons of water per day in or around the home. Roughly, 35% of the water we consume is used for showering and bathing, while 30% is used for flushing toilets.

With a looming water crisis facing the world, it seems particularly wasteful to send shower and bath water directly into the sewage system for treatment and to use drinkable water to flush toilets.


What is Greywater Recycling?

Greywater is wastewater drained from sinks, showers, bathtubs and washing machines, but not from toilets. Greywater recycling is a process that aims to capture that still useful water to be reused safely elsewhere.

Greywater may contain dirt, hair, detergents, food and other contaminants that make it unsuitable for drinking. It can, nevertheless, be reclaimed and useful for other purposes.

How Can I Reuse Greywater?

recycling-water_480A greywater system can be installed in the home to capture water used from sinks, tubs, and showers for safe use for subsurface landscape irrigation or flushing toilets.

Safety is of primary concern when it comes to greywater recycling to avoid waterborne diseases.

A good greywater system will store used water in a tank that will allow solids to fall to the bottom or rise to the surface to be filtered out, much like a standard septic system.

It will also send greywater that has been stored for too long directly to the sewage system to ensure it is not used. The system is designed to avoid the possibility of cross-contamination with potable water in your home.

Is Having My Own Greywater Recycling System At Home Safe?

Traditionally, plumbing codes have not made a distinction between greywater and blackwater (water from the toilet) and considered it all sewage. With the rise of the water conservation movement, however, many states and jurisdictions have acknowledged the need to reuse greywater where possible.

In Vernon, where the International Plumbing Code is adopted, greywater can be used for subsurface irrigation and for toilet flushing.

In addition to not storing it for extended periods, contact with greywater should be avoided, as it could contain a pathogen. Additionally, greywater is best used for irrigation when it is infiltrated into the ground and used for ornamental plants or fruit trees. It can also be used for vegetable plants as long as it doesn't touch thsaving-water-in-order-to-save-money_480e edible part of the plant.

Infiltrated greywater must never be allowed to pool up or run off as it can pose a risk to nearby well water or provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

It is critical for you to use plant-friendly products in your home if you intend to recycle greywater for irrigation.

These products should be made without salts chlorine bleach or boron, which can damage soil and harm plant life.

Other Ways To Make Your Water Use More Eco-Friendly

If you're not quite ready to invest in a greywater recycling system for your home, many other ways to reduce your water consumption will have a beneficial impact on the environment and lower your water bills. You can add barrels around your home to capture rainwater to water your lawn and garden.

You can also capture water used in your bathroom sink in a bucket by opening the P-trap and use that water to flush your toilet.

If you’re interested in finding out more about greywater recycling and reducing your water consumption in Vernon, contact the experts at Water Heater Medic today at 860-896-3342.