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Tips for Saving Water at Home
Massacusetts Water Resources Authority

Photo of soap dish
How to choose
water-efficient appliances
How to choose
water-efficient toilets
Garden and landscaping water conservation tips and rain barrel information

In 1986, MWRA customers used a total of 330 million gallons of water per day.

Thanks to every-day water conservation efforts, demand has been reduced to about 200 million gallons per day (last five-years average).

Saving water keeps supplies level and has helped residents control their water, sewer and energy costs.

Below are some easy ways to save water at home.

Go to Water Conservation and Efficiency Main Page



Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth or shaving: save 1-2 gallons per minute.

Never use your toilet as a wastebasket: save 1-7 gallons per flush.

Don't take marathon showers: five minutes will get you clean. Save 2-4 gallons per minute.

Fill your bathtub only halfway: save 5 gallons or more. You will save hot water costs, too.

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Faucets and Showerheads

Dripping or trickling faucets and showerheads can waste from 75 to several hundred gallons of water a week depending on the size of the drip. Worn-out washers are the main cause of these leaks and a new one generally costs about 50 cents.

Faucets typically use 2 to 7 gallons per minute. Installing a low-flow (1.5-gallon per minute) faucet aerator can reduce the flow significantly. Be sure to remove your aerator periodically to clean the particles that may have collected in the screen.

A Simple Test for Leaks

A leaky faucet is pretty obvious. But hidden leaks in the toilet, under the sink, or behind a washing machine can waste a significant amount of water. And they could be damaging your floors or ceilings too. Take a reading of your water meter. Wait an hour, making sure no one uses any water in your home. Check it again. If the reading has changed, you have got at least one leak and you need to investigate.


That trickling sound you hear in the bathroom could be a leaky toilet wasting 50 gallons of water a day or more. But sometimes it leaks silently. Try this:

Crush a dye tablet in its envelope and carefully empty the contents into the center of the toilet tank and allow it to dissolve. Wait about 10 minutes. Inspect the toilet bowl for signs of blue dye indicating a leak.

If the dye has appeared in the bowl, your flapper or flush valve may need to be replaced. Parts are inexpensive and fairly easy to replace. If no dye has appeared in 10 minutes time, you probably don't have a leak.

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Updated August 12, 2022