The holiday season is coming up and, for a lot of us, that means we’re having family and friends over and spend a lot of time preparing food and sharing meals. It’s also a time where there are plenty of opportunities to contribute to the environment by saving water. Get a head start on those New Year’s resolutions with these simple water-saving tips for the holidays.
Water scarcity in Europe has risen to extreme levels this past summer, and while cold and wet winters might not be the most obvious season to bring to mind that scarcity, we can still do our part – and it doesn’t have to be hard. Every small action can help. And isn’t that a great message to share with your family and friends over Christmas?
In the Kitchen
When you’re preparing root vegetables for your Christmas dinner, consider soaking them the day before using them. An excellent way to avoid having to boil them later on: they can go straight into the oven the following day. That soaking water can have a second life when you’re boiling or steaming other veggies later on. And even a third life: once you’re done with the water, let it cool down and use it to water your plants. An excellent way to get the most out of your water, and it now contains nutrients plants thrive on!
Getting ready to defrost meat for your dinner? Start a little earlier and instead of using hot water, let the meat slowly thaw in the refrigerator. It takes some extra time, but you’ll save both water and energy – that frozen hunk of meat will help keep your refrigerator cool, so it doesn’t have to work as hard.
At the Table
Introduce a single-cup policy. Everyone gets their own water glass for the day – you can even decorate them to make it more festive – so you don’t need to wash their glasses over and over again. More room in that dishwasher! Leftover water in glasses after meals or in bowls doesn’t have to be thrown out either: fill up your watering can and use it to water your Christmas tree. Make sure to check how much the tree needs, it’s usually less than you think.
With more than your average amount of cooking going on, and more guests to feed, you’ll be facing a lot of dishes. Make sure to stack your dishwasher as efficiently as possible, and only run a full machine. Avoid pre-rinsing if you can – a running tap can waste dozens of liters of water and with modern dishwashers, it’s often not even necessary. If you have the option, use the eco-friendly program on the machine. It uses both less water and less energy, and the extra time it takes gives you a good excuse to sit down with your guests.
Around the House
Having overnight guests? Check your house for leaks before they arrive. With more people in the house, your toilets are flushed more often, showers and taps are working overtime, and your whole system is at capacity. Any leak – no matter how small – will likely be exacerbated. Fixing them in time will prevent bigger issues once you’re entertaining, and prevent waste.
Encourage your guests to turn off the tap when they brush their teeth and don’t take showers that are too long – you’ll save water, and your other guests won’t have to wait around for their turn! You can also limit the amount of water used during each toilet flush by placing a plastic bottle filled with water in the toilet tank. The tank won’t have to be filled up as much and will still have plenty of water to flush down what needs to go.
After the Holidays
Want to do more, and on a more permanent basis? Think of investing in water-saving equipment for your house. With water-saving showerheads and aerators on your taps, you can save significant amounts of water without compromising on convenience. And the less hot water you use that way, the less you’re spending on energy, too!
Want to know more about how to save water with Smartvatten’s service and guidance? Contact us at email@example.com!