Friday, July 20, 2012

Make Old Toilet More Efficient / Replace your Water Faucet, and Save Precious Water

Here's Two Environmentally Friendly Ways to Save Water!

Make Old Toilet More Efficient
Typically older toilets hold anywhere from 3.5 to 7 gallons of water. The newer models are made more efficient by only using 1.5 to 3 gallons per flush. But not everybody can afford to buy a new toilet right away. And chances are you will need a plumber to install it. You can use this as a temporary fix to permanently save money. This really costs nothing and can save loads on the energy bills.

How to:
Get a clean, used 12 oz. plastic water bottle or two. Be sure to remove any paper or exterior labels.
Fill your dry water bottle with sand.
Place the lid on the water bottle and be sure bottle is dry and sealed.
Remove the lid to the water tank on your toilet.
Flush your toilet so that the tank is nearly empty and immediately place your filled bottle(s) into the tank.
Check to ensure that the bottle is not floating and is not blocking your stopper. Additionally, verify that the water is properly shutting off when the tank is full. Replace the lid on the toilet water tank.
If your tank is larger, you can try a larger bottle.

For more on this project, go to and see this Associated Content article. Copyright 2010 CBS. All rights reserved.

Updated Bathroom Faucet
A simple faucet replacement can easily update the look of a bath or kitchen without having to spend a fortune. Faucets run anywhere from $30 and up and can be installed in less than an hour.

How to:
Using a wrench, take the old faucet from the sink and take it to the store with you to be sure to purchase a proper replacement
Remove any old plumber's putty or caulk
Add new faucet with gasket or plumber's putty
Add Teflon tape to the hookups for a tight fit
Tighten down the nuts being careful not to twist the hookups.

The most important thing to keep you from running back and forth to the hardware store is to make sure you have the proper size. I recommend taking the old one off and taking it with you to the store. You'll need an adjustable wrench and this basin wrench to get up into the tight spaces. Make sure you have turned off the water supply and drained out the sink before you do this or you'll end up with water everywhere. A TOOL WORTH IT'S WEIGHT IN GOLD IS CALLED A BASIN WRENCH. IT COSTS $12.

For more on this project, go to and

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