Turning a Bathroom Green
As our environmental resources wane it's important to start thinking about ways in which we can balance our decor desires with our need to protect the planet. Why not start with a site so often home to excessive wastage: the bathroom? We asked Chiara Merani, Director at Emporio IXIA Projects, for a few tips on how to green up this all-important space:
- The quickest, easiest and most economical change you can make is to install flow-reducing aerators on all of your taps. By fitting these you can reduce your flow rate from 22 litres per minute – that of an ordinary tap – to between three and 15 litres per minute, depending on the model purchased. This will result in huge water savings and you won't even feel the difference. Flow reducers can be installed on shower heads too.
- Another effective way to limit water consumption is to install a toilet with a dual flush mechanism, offering two different flush levels. Such mechanisms are available on most toilet ranges. Geberit, a leading sanitary technology company, also manufactures concealed cisterns which allow for the amount of water flushed to be regulated at the time of installation.
- Fix leaking taps immediately. Most reputable tap dealers offer at least a two-year guarantee on their products so rely on this rather than trying to repair them yourself. In the case of a leak you can also conserve water by putting in angle valves with each mixer. This way if a tap starts to drip you can shut off its personal supply without having to switch off your water at the mains.
- Electricity consumption can be reduced by installing a geyser blanket or switching to a solar powered geyser.
- When choosing sanitary- and plumbware try to purchase a product that is free of lead, nickel or zinc. These metals slowly seep into our water systems and contaminate the environment over time.
- Finally, a few minor behavioural changes can also help to conserve water and energy in the bathroom: shower rather than bath, turn off the tap while brushing your teeth and switch off the geyser when you're not using it.