In our July performance post I stated that we were tracking our water usage and water pump usage to calculate the efficiency of the pump. Dan Gibson asked in a comment about our water usage, so I thought I’d cover that here. He says in his comment that there are not a lot of actual hard numbers on water usage and he’s definitely right. Most estimates I’ve seen online say 50 to 100 gallons per person, which seems both excessive and vague at the same time.
We installed water meters on the main line and the inlet to the hot water tank. We have usage data starting in January when we moved in.
|All values in gallons||Jan||Feb||Mar||Apr||May||Jun||Jul|
|Main water inlet||1,677.3||1,584.2||1,338.3||1,373.4||1,722.4||2,593.1||3,166.9|
|Hot water inlet||884.5||746.6||600.8||552.5||569.7||660.8||567.4|
A couple of notes on the data. Our shower wasn’t ready for use until the middle of February which increased out water usage in the first few months. Showers are obviously more efficient than tubs. In May, we acquired 3 dairy goats, some chickens, started building a barn and watering the garden, pushing up our usage again.
Taking these factors into account, it looks like our typical average indoor water usage is about 45-50 gallons per day for 2 adults, or 23-25 gallons per person. Our hot water usage seems to average about 20 gallons per day. Hot water accounts for roughly 40% of our total indoor usage.
The larger number in July indicates the unfortunate situation where we turned on the water to the garden and forgot to turn it off. It ran for a few hours. Thankfully we use soaker hoses, otherwise the loss could have been much larger.
We had planned to use cistern water for the garden, but we ended up moving the garden to a different location that is about the same elevation as the cistern, meaning we can’t use gravity feed. We’re working on a low tech solution to pump the cistern water up above the garden to a separate tank which can than use gravity feed. For now, it seems just as efficient to use well water.
If you have any questions, let us know in the comments.