How Much Water Does Your Home Drink?

How Much Water Does Your Home Drink?

Often, when we look at water consumption, we only think about the amount of water that we drink. Looking at the overall home water use, we can quickly see that many places drink water, such as washing machines, dishwashers, sinks, toilets, and showers. Let’s take a look at water quality and usage in an average home.

How is a Gallon of Water Used?

Let’s take a closer look at each gallon of water that is used in our homes and analyze how it’s used for different tasks. Each gallon is equal to eight 16 oz glasses of water, and when you look at domestic water use in terms of glasses; the results may surprise many people.

1/2 gallon or 4 glasses = Recommended daily water intake for a single person.

2 gallons or 16 glasses = One minute of showering with decent water pressure.

2.5 gallons or 20 glasses = Brushing teeth, washing hands/face and other personal hygiene tasks.

3 gallons or 24 glasses = A single toilet flush.

4-10 gallons or 32-80 glasses = One dishwasher cycle (whether full or half empty).

15 gallons or 120 glasses = One standard washing machine cycle.

As you can see we use a lot of water in these everyday tasks, the average household in the U.S. uses approximately 300 gallons or 5,400 glasses of water each day.

Water Quality is Important

Alongside the importance of good quality drinking water, we can now see how much clean water we need for other daily routines and using appliances. This is why it’s essential to get the best quality water that’s soft, easy to use and free from harmful contaminants. There are contaminants present in water that are colorless, odorless and tasteless. This makes them very difficult to detect without laboratory water testing. Let’s take a look at some of the most common water contaminants.

Arsenic: This is naturally present in bedrock, or it could be an industrial byproduct. It enters the water supply as the water moves through rock and it poses a number of health risks, including cancer.

Chlorine: Many people find the chemical taste and smell of chlorine to be unpalatable when drinking water. Chlorine is used to disinfect municipal water, but some users prefer to filter it out to improve the taste and avoid other side effects.

Chromium 6: This is a toxic contaminant that can be found in groundwater from industrial activities, such as leather dying, chrome plating, wood preservatives and stainless steel manufacturing processes. Chromium 6 is a potential cancer risk, and it’s undetectable even in large quantities.

Coliform and E.Coli: These are harmful bacteria that can be found in three groups; they are E.Coli, total coliform, and fecal coliform. These bacteria can be found in our water from septic tank failures or agricultural runoff after rainfall. They can cause a variety of health issues, such as vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, anemia and even kidney failure in extreme cases.

Lead: Lead can get into our water supply from a variety of sources, such as older lead pipes, lead solder joints, lead plumbing fixtures and flaked lead paint. Water is a very effective solvent, and it can easily dissolve many materials including lead. There is no safe lead exposure amount; this is especially true for babies, children, and elderly people. The health effects are well documented, and they range from stomach pains right up to brain damage and learning difficulties.

The best way to improve your home water quality and efficiency is to contact a local water treatment professional. There are many different water treatment systems available to treat a wide variety of water quality issues.

By Mark Williams (NicMar President Mark Williams holds degrees in Applied Science and Industrial Thermodynamics, along with Agricultural Mechanization and Systems Engineering from Ohio State University.  He also holds the highest possible industry ranking, being WQA (Water Quality Association) LEVEL 6 Certified.

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Nicmar Water
999 Baltimore Road York SpringsPA17372 USA 
 • 800-542-8649

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