Water conservation

How many drips are in a gallon?

Check your faucets around your home — do any of them drip? Well, maybe it’s just a small drip — how much water can a little drip waste? True, a single drip won’t waste much water. But think about each faucet in your home dripping a little bit all day long. What if every faucet in every home on your block … in your town … in your state also dripped? The drips would add up to a flood of water wasted down the drain.

According to expert scientific investigation, collecting drips in a calibrated measuring cylinder, a small drip has a volume of about 1/3 of a milliliter (0.33 ml). So, by many repeat experiments of dripping water into the cylinder, there are about 3,000 drips in a liter of water. A gallon is equal to 3.7854 liters, so, by the math (3,000 times 3.7854), we have about 15,100 drips per gallon.

 

Now just for an example of how much water a dripping faucet or faucets in your home would add up to, let’s say you have 3 faucets that drip 60 drips a minute all day and all night. There are 1,440 minutes in a 24 hour day, (60 minutes times 24 hours = 1,440 minutes).

  • 60 drips a minute times 3 faucets = 180 drips a minute.
  • 180 drips times 1,440 minutes in a day = 259,200 drips per day.
  • 259,200 drips per day divided by 3,000 drips in a liter = 86.4 liters.
  • 86.4 liters divided by 3.7854 liters = 22.8 gallons a day.
  • 22.8 gallons a day times 30 days in a month = 684 gallons of water a month dripping down your drain and out to waste.

A leaking toilet will waste from 300 gallons to 1500 gallons of water every day! Most of the time you cannot hear the water seeping out the flapper valve or down the overflow. Did you know that just a ½ gallon a minute leak is 720 gallons a day! A unit of water is 748 gallons or 10 cubic feet!

Listed below are average amounts of water used per person in a home every day.

 

  • Bath: 50 Gallons
  • Shower: 2 gallons per minute
  • Teeth brushing: 1 gallon
  • Hands/face washing: 1 gallon
  • Face/leg shaving: 1 gallon
  • Dishwasher: 20 gallons a load
  • Dishwashing by hand: 5 gallons a load
  • Clothes washing (machine):10 – 20 gallons a load
  • Toilet flush: 3 to 7 gallons)
  • Glasses of water drank: 8 oz. per glass (1/16th of a gallon)

 

These numbers are only an estimate and are not taking into account everything you use water for, such as cooking and car and pet washing. And, water use for all activities vary by individual.

You might use five gallons to wash dishes by hand, but your sister might use ten. You might leave the water running when you brush your teeth, but your brother might not. If you live in a newer house, your toilet probably uses less water per flush than the toilet in a very old house. Newer houses also have shower and faucet heads that use less water than before.

On the average, every person in a home uses 100 gallons of water every day. 

 

   howieb@ci.st-helens.or.us