Help me not waste water..
November 2, 2005 6:42 AM   Subscribe

watersalvagefilter: Ideas to save water from an inevitable shower..

I'll explain, the central heating is faulty and so to get it working I have to run the shower for five mins or so to fool it into coming on.

Five mins is a lot of water, any ideas for saving it for something? I don't want to have to keep hanging around for long..

I live in UK, so there no need to put it on the garden :)
posted by jwhittlestone to Home & Garden (9 answers total)
Fill one or more buckets and use them to flush the toilet.
posted by StickyCarpet at 6:45 AM on November 2, 2005

You can use the water to do laundry if you don't mind not using hot water. Just pour it into your washing machine.
posted by Alison at 6:57 AM on November 2, 2005

I'm really confused by your question, I'm not sure how heat and showers are connected, but regardless...

I assume this is a daily if not several times daily occurrence. That makes for a lot of water, more than you'd use for cooking and drinking. I'd have to go with StickyCarpet's suggestion.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:58 AM on November 2, 2005

If you happen to be doing laundry that can be washed cold/lukewarm, Alison's idea is a good one. (That way, you can set the washing machine to a smaller load setting so it doesn't fill completely on its own.)
posted by robynal at 7:48 AM on November 2, 2005

fix the central heating.
posted by andrew cooke at 9:03 AM on November 2, 2005

Pollomacho: I once rented a house that had this weird, oil-fired furnace/hot water heater contraption. I've never seen one before or since but I'm guessing that is something like what jwhittlestone has. Mine never worked either.
posted by octothorpe at 10:43 AM on November 2, 2005

If it's a time related problem (rather than a water volume problem), what about running the shower at a very low pressure for the time it takes the water to heat? This doesn't quite answer your question but could very well decrease the amount of water wasted (and, in fact, this is what I do).
posted by lumiere at 1:53 PM on November 2, 2005

How about alternative ways to heat water? Maybe a solar heater wouldn't work too well in the UK (here's a hack). But when I lived in Brazil we didn't have hot water--we had an electric showerhead. It was switched on by water pressure and the water ran past heat coils wrapped in plastic. It never made the water very warm, but with it we survived indoor tempuratures of 50 degrees F (10 degrees C). (We didn't have heat either.)

Unfortunately I don't know where you'd find one and I can't remember my Portuguese for 'electric showerhead'.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:59 PM on November 2, 2005

pollomacho, in the UK many houses use water-filled radiators in every room for central heating. There is just one water heater in the house that supplies hot water to the radiators, showers and all the taps.

jwhittlestone, I had a similar problem with my old water heater, which turned out to be a) old and crap and b) full of limescale because the water is really hard here. The limescale collects at the bottom of the heater tank, and can significantly decrease its operation. Not sure if you can fix the limescale issue without replacing the heater, but might be worth looking into, if you are in a hard water area.
posted by Joh at 11:16 PM on November 4, 2005

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