Cleaning Up the Toilet

Around this place we are always taking steps, some big and some small, to try to live greener.  We have an old house, build in 1925.  I’m not sure when the plumbing was redone, but our toilet seems newish – for a house built in 1925.  It’s a normal toilet, 1.6 gallons per flush (average, now days, I think), no dual flush or anything fancy.

In a small effort to conserve water we have, in the past, put a brick in the tank, but this resulted in the toilet not having enough oomph to flush when it was really needed.  We took the brick out.  Then we tried the “when it’s yellow, let it mellow, when it’s brown, flush it down” method of saving water.  But this resulted in much more toilet cleaning.  Either because we have super-pee or because of Colorado’s hard water.  But we were getting a dark ring in the toilet that way, so we’ve nearly abandoned it, except first thing in the morning and last whiz before bed, when Rick and I will both go before we flush.

Now we’re considering collecting grey water from the shower and the boys’ baths to use to flush.  Our shower-head for sure wastes a lot of water, and the bath faucet drips while the shower is going, so I think we could easily put a dish pan or bucket in the shower and collect enough water for the day’s toileting.  Then when we went, we’d just dump the water from the tub into the pot and watch it go down.  At least that water would get “used” twice. I’ve never tried this, but it seems good in theory.

Or we could, eventually, spring for a fancy dual-flush toilet.  But then we have to figure out what to do with the old one – recycle it?  And really a new toilet is not in the budget and is pretty far down on the list of things that need replacement or repairs in this place. Or they make conversion kits but I heard they don’t work well and they cost nearly as much as a new pot.

Any advice or ideas?  Have you ever tried using grey water to flush?  What do you do to conserve water in the bathroom?

Categories: Sustainability | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Cleaning Up the Toilet

  1. Eric Sylvester

    I made the mistake of eating lunch while reading this…


  2. Anisa

    Oh – so sorry Eric – I should have posted a disclaimer at the top.

    Notice: if you are eating, drinking, or squeamish about discussing or reading about toilets, poop, urine, grey water or letting the yellow-mellow, please wait to read this post until you are no longer eating, drinking or better fortified for reading such a post.


  3. Eric Sylvester

    Haha, then I made the mistake of reading your disclaimer hung over… I think I need to stop returning to this post…

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