Tap water is today the safest after rainwater with filtration; monitored on 54 microbiological and chemical parameters, the same cannot be said of mineral water. (some are even frankly non-compliant with too high sodium, fluoride sulphate or chloride contents ). If the smell of chlorine bothers you, draw your water only half an hour before consuming it, you will at least be sure that it will not have been parked for minutes or hours in the sun, under plastic, waiting for its path The packaging produced to supply this bottled water makes you pale: cardboard boxes, pallets, plastic film…plus the transport of supplies from the shops, then from home. So much CO2 wasted!
Conclusion: let’s use tap water up to 200 times cheaper (0.003€/liter) and which, moreover, arrives directly at your home!!!
In a country like ours, packaging water in plastic bottles is a luxury that we will pay dearly, an aberration moreover. If you are in the countryside, opt for rainwater harvesting… you will be autonomous!!!!
Distribution of our average daily per capita consumption:
Body care, shower, bath 48L/day WC 43L/day
Other 3L/d Washing machine: 16L/d
Drinking and cooking 3L/d Garden 6L/d
Dishwashing 15L/d Washing 3L/d
53% of the water consumed would not require treatment (above in red type).
Annual consumption per capita: 46m3 or 46000L (compare with your bill).
The drinking water that comes out of our taps, treated by our complex and expensive treatment plants, is used for only 7% for food purposes (cooking + dishes), but 93% of it is used to wash us, fill our toilets, wash our cars, water our gardens…
When you know that in France a roof can collect an average of 700 l of rain per m² per year, you quickly understand how to cover up to 53% of your needs quickly and at a reduced cost (above in red type). By filtering the water collected by our gutters, by storing it in an underground tank preferably if its capacity exceeds 1,000 l (protection against frost, summer t°c with bacterial proliferation), by reinjecting it through a pump system that feeds a separate circuit of drinking water for filling the toilets, watering the garden, the washing machine, …
This water can even be made potable using more efficient filters (activated carbon ceramic, or reverse osmosis).
Cost: about 200 € for a 300 l polyethylene tank, a filter, a hand pump
3500 € for a complete household power supply system (7 500 l)
(the water tariff often exceeds 3 €/m3!).
A few common sense gestures
– Start by reintegrating at the intellectual level the fact that water is a precious commodity to be respected, regardless of our geographical location.
-private the shower (50l against 150 for a bath), reduce its duration, close the mixer tap during soaping. If you are not afraid to pass for a peasant, you can also simply wash yourself with a glove. And yes, you should have thought about it!
– turn off the water while soaping your body or hands, brushing your teeth, washing dishes by hand – buy a category A dishwasher.
– manage the pressure: if it is too high, install a pressure reducer (30 €) upstream (up to 30% savings).
– plan short pipes (water heater near the bathroom), insulate them to avoid
heat loss and waste while waiting for hot water at the tap .
– install overflow recovery systems (expansion tank) due to the expansion of hot water,
– replace the taps by timed taps that stop automatically (a hand wash can draw 10 to 15 l, especially if you are waiting for hot water!), by high-end mixing taps, pressure reducers.
– shorter washing machine programme.
– declare war on leaks.
– recuperate the rinse water from vegetables to water the plants,
– IMPORTANT 2nd CONSUMPTION ITEM: change the toilet flush; some older models free 20 l for one use; the new double push-button models offer 3, 6 or 9 l. In the worst case, you can still place one or two bottles full of water or sand inside (avoid crumbling bricks!) or lower the float by twisting the stem downwards.
The toilet tank is the second water consuming station behind the baths and showers; water, let’s remember it is perfectly drinkable, controlled for food purposes!! If filling with rainwater is one answer, dry toilets are another. The principle is very simple: a seat and a bucket underneath; after use, litter (made of sawdust, vegetable shredded cardboard,…) is poured over the dejecta which, by absorbing the liquids, blocks the development of odours and starts a composting process. All that remains to be done is to empty the bucket regularly on the compost heap, where the micro-organisms do their business with the faecal germs.