Spend 20 Minutes Adapting Your Toilet, Save 3000 Gallons of Water a Year

   You might have once read that you could save water by putting a brick in your toilet tank. That is no longer recommended, as bricks break down over time and the residue can lead to plumbing damage. Instead, you can recycle a used soda pop bottle and use it to displace water, saving you 2 liters of water with every flush. The average person flushes 4 times a day at home (you really do learn something new every day), so a family of four can easily save 3000 gallons of water a year just by following these easy steps.

First, remove the label and wash an empty plastic 2-liter soda pop bottle.


Fill the bottle almost to the top with water and add a handful of marbles or pebbles. Don’t skip this step or the bottle will  float in the toilet tank and could interfere with the flushing mechanism.


Add a few drops of bleach to the water so it doesn’t get funky. Then put the lid on tightly.


Position the bottle carefully in the tank so it doesn’t interfere with the flushing mechanism.


Check the tank periodically to make sure the bottle hasn’t shifted. That’s all there is to it!



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About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of 15 books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

7 thoughts on “Spend 20 Minutes Adapting Your Toilet, Save 3000 Gallons of Water a Year”

  1. I recently tried to use this method to save water and it worked pretty well once I got the kinks worked ou.t It did make my toilet flush a little less forcefully and my plumber ultimately suggested just replacing the toilet with a low flow rather than modifying my existing toilet since they are designed to work with a certain amount of water. If you reduce the amount of water in the tank, you run the risk if the toilet not functioning properly. You can read about my experience on my blog post One Step Forward, Two Steps Back (http://sustainablyme.wordpress.com/2009/04/09/one-step-forward-two-steps-back/).

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  4. i have friends that just put a half gallon milk jug filled with water in their tanks. I’ll have to ask them if they have ever had any problems with it shifting as I know they don’t have pebbles or marbles in the bottom.
    We have a super flush toilet – blasts really fast, doesn’t use much water at all but gets the job done. :o)


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