When people start talking about greywater, it can become complicated and overwhelming very quickly. But there are some simple ways you can save and use greywater without retrofitting your home and without special equipment. These small steps are enough to sustain a small garden and/or reduce the use of other water in your home.
What You Need
Bucket (only as big as you can carry when full of water)
1. The simplest step to collecting greywater is to use a dishpan in your kitchen sink. While washing your hands, washing produce or washing/rinsing dishes, you can collect the water for later use in the garden.
2. Another simple solution is to keep a bucket in the bathroom. While you wait for the water to heat up, you catch it in the bucket. Make sure to use a bucket that, when full, can still be carried easily. You don't want to drop it and have an accidental flood! If you're a bath-taker, the bucket can be used to remove water from the tub once you're finished.
This water can be used to water plants or to flush the toilet.
3. Using stale pet water on potted plants is another idea. Though, if your cats drop their food in the water, you might want to only use it outdoors for fear of attracting bugs in your home. Also, don't forget your own unused drinking water. Two or three ounces in the bottom of your bottle would be much happier hydrating your herbs than down the drain!
4. If you're using a glass of water to brush your teeth rather than leave the tap running, you're already ahead of the game. But instead of pouring the water down the drain, you can pour it in the garden.
There are a lot of ways to collect greywater with home modifications or special equipment, but these are the simplest ways to get started. Do you have any tips of your own? Please share them below!
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(Images: Michelle Chin)