Elements of a Green Bathroom
See how an eco-friendly design and green bathroom products can save you energy and money.
By: Rob Fanjoy
While kitchens use the most energy in a typical home, bathrooms use the most water. According to the U.S. EPA, a family of four could save more than 16,000 gallons of water per year simply by replacing a traditional toilet with a high-efficiency toilet.
"A lot of what makes a bathroom green has to do with water savings," says Sean Ruck, spokesperson for the National Kitchen & Bath Association. "And consumers can easily incorporate a lot of items that don't look or perform any differently than traditional materials, for about the same price."
Since 1994, federal standards have required toilets, showerheads and faucets to use less water, so if you replace pre-1994 fixtures with new ones, you'll save water right from the start. Low-flow toilets got a well-deserved bad rap for poor performance when those standards first came out, but newer models have largely fixed the problems.
If you're still worried about getting a lemon, research your options at the Saving Water Partnership's list of FlushStar toilets (those that meet certain performance criteria) at http://www.savingwater.org/docs/FlushStar.pdf.
"Dual flush toilets are another new product that is gaining popularity," says Sean. These toilets feature a dual flushing valve, where users push one button to release about half a gallon of water. Pushing the second button releases a flush with more force and anywhere from 1.2 to 1.6 gallons of water. "Combined with low-flow showerheads and faucets, you'll notice dramatic water savings," says Sean.
The Benefits of Going Green in the Bathroom
Learn how to use eco-friendly bathroom design to save energy and water, lower your utility bills and create a beautiful bathroom in the process.
Bold New Fixtures on a Budget
Replacing tired old fixtures is the fastest way to give your bath a bold, new look on a budget.
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Determine Your Bathroom Layout
The best bathroom remodels start with a thoughtful layout. Here are some important tips when considering your remodeled bathroom's new floorplan.
Tips for Planning for a Bathroom Layout
Make the most of your space; get ideas on how best to lay out a new bathroom floor plan.
Tips for Going Green in the Bathroom
Follow these energy- and water-conservation tips to create the greenest bath around.
Elements of a Green Kitchen
Kitchens get an eco-friendly boost from energy-efficient appliances, water-saving fixtures and improvements in indoor air quality.
5 Simple Ways to Go Green in the Bath
Discover five easy tips on greening your bathroom, from organic linens to water-saving fixtures.
Strategies for Going Green
From improving indoor air quality to decreasing energy costs, we've got the ideas you need to get your green kitchen now.
Selecting the Right Bathroom Flooring
There are many factors to consider when choosing a flooring type for your bathroom. Our expert shares advice on flooring options that are powder-room friendly.
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