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

Here’s a simple tip for adapting your toilet to save up to 3,000 gallons of water a year. Best of all, once you set it up your reduced water consumption and savings will continue for many years.

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, right?), 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!

For more easy ways to be green and save money, you might also enjoy:

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is the author of 17 books, including Small Bites and 101 Things To Do With Bacon. She shares ideas to simplify cooking, gardening, time and money. She is also the owner of Cross Media, Inc. and founder of the BENSA Bacon Lovers Society.

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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