It may seem like our beloved planet called earth has an abundance of water which will be enough for all humans forever. However, we all know, that is not the truth. Since we have a limited amount of this vital resource, it is important that we ensure the maximum utilization of water.
One of the many ways to ensure it is implementing a greywater disposal system in our own buildings – be it home or workplace. This alone will save us a significant amount of fresh water, as well as energy.
If you are unfamiliar with this system, let’s take you on an enlightening ride!
What is Grey Water?
Greywater refers to all the residual water left after using household systems like kitchen, showers and laundry. This kind of water is never collected from sources that can have fecal contamination. As a result, it can be utilized further for various purposes which we will discuss soon.
Why Should You Collect Grey Water?
Initially, this approach may seem completely bizarre to you. However, greywater is actually saving us gallons of water which will be crucial for the survival of humans, as well as other species living on this planet.
1. Clean Water Conservation
The main objective of greywater is to conserve clean water for more sensitive situations where its cleanliness is absolutely non-negotiable. This mostly applies to the water used for drinking, showering, dishwashing and laundry. Greywater is used in other tasks where the outcome will not suffer from the filtered water.
2. Reducing Water Wastage
Since mankind has not come up with a way of “creating” water, it is pretty safe to say that we have a limited amount of this resource on the planet. As a result, we must hold on to every last drop and make sure of their proper utilization. Greywater helps in this regard by not letting the reusable water go to waste.
3. Energy Conservation
By investing in greywater, you can reduce the amount of energy required to run systems like sewerage purification and water distribution. It decreases the load of finding fresh water for domestic tasks and the pressure of checking for purity. Besides, electricity also gets a save from such an arrangement.
Where Can We Use Grey Water?
If this is the first time you have come to know about greywater, you must be wondering what kind of use does it actually have! Well, let us tell you some of the major fields and purposes where greywater is used.
This kind of recycled water is very helpful for irrigation since the growing plants and the soil beneath it doesn’t really require absolutely fresh water.
The greywater is freed from all kinds of debris for such purposes. Then a direct line is established between this filtration system and the irrigation line for applying on the plants.
Irrigation is by far the most common use of greywater. One of the main reasons behind it is the presence of minerals and other nutrients in the recycled water. These elements help the plants grow faster and stronger.
2. Toilet Flushing
The water collected from showers and household chores can actually be used for flushing your toilet! It doesn’t pose any health risk or other threats if a cleaning tank and a proper control mechanism are put in place.
Utilizing greywater, many jurisdictions of Europe, Australia and the USA have saved up to 30% water from domestic uses!
You can add greywater to any landscape in order to make it more beautiful. The soothing contrast between the natural colors of blue and green can create an irresistible beauty for everyone to marvel at!
Since all these water are never meant to be drunk or used in any productive work, utilizing greywater in these situations prevents wastage of fresh new water.
4. Eco-Friendly Home
You can go one step further than others in syncing your lifestyle with the global environmental revolution with greywater.
It can be used for turning your home into an eco-friendly one. Such a home implements the necessary tools and systems in place to automate the conversion of wastewater into greywater. As a result, more people can use the water without wasting it. You can save as much as 40,000 gallons of water per year this way!
How to Collect Grey Water?
Although greywater looks dirty at first, it is actually not polluted enough to be completely disposed of. So it should be collected from various sources like showers, washing machines and sinks through pipes or basins. However, plumping is a more efficient approach for this step.
Then you need to store the collected water and treat it with iodine or chlorine to prevent bad odor. This water must be used within 24 hours so that it doesn’t lose the usability.
Rules and Precautions of Greywater Disposal
1. Local Regulations
Although most states don’t oppose the use of greywater, there may be certain regulations applicable to your jurisdiction. So consult with an expert or your local environmental authorities to learn about these particular rules and plan your disposal system complying with those guidelines.
2. Compatible Building Designs
The design of your building should be compatible with the process of greywater disposal. Investing in incorporating such a system into an already existing structure may prove to be costlier than creating one from scratch. But if your building doesn’t have room for such a system, you can plan for a hybrid variation of it.
3. 24 Hours’ Window
Remember to use the collected greywater within 24 hours. Otherwise, the contaminant residuals in them will start to decay and thus the water will produce a putrid smell. So it is of immense importance that you don’t store the water for some later use.
4. No Softened Water
If you are planning to use greywater for outdoor uses like landscape beautification or irrigation, you should make sure that it is not softened. The soft water can have alkali or salt materials which will harm the health of plants. For the same reason, the cleaners used for their maintenance should also be environment-friendly.
Being one of the most intelligent species on the planet, it is definitely our duty to make sure that we never run out of water. Greywater is an effective way to do so without harming the environment.
Therefore, we should consider embracing this greywater disposal system for a brighter and cleaner future for the generations to come.