Whether you’re financially or morally motivated to conserve water, it’s a good idea to take a few steps on improving your water usage footprint. Water is an ever-growing scarce resource that we all depend on to survive.
Luckily, there are a handful of ways to conserve water through simple adjustments.
If you haven’t already, updating your home’s fixtures and appliances to WaterSense and Energy Star labeled models can reduce your indoor water use by 20%! Adding low flow toilets, and faucet aerators will also help reduce your usage without the need to change any of your habits.
Due to the interconnectivity between energy and water, saving energy can result in water savings, too! It takes between 3,000-6,000 gallons of water to power a 60-watt incandescent lightbulb for 12 hours a day over the course of a year. Reducing your energy usage is not only good for your energy bill and your local power grid, but also for your water footprint!
Resell your clothes, buy less new cloths & consider secondhand. Higher end secondhand sites like ThredUp provide like-new secondhand clothing for a fraction of the cost. It takes 1,000 gallons of water to make one pair of jeans, and 718 gallons to make one t-shirt. By shopping secondhand periodically, you can dramatically reduce your water footprint.
Eat less beef. To produce 1lb of steak requires an average of 1,800 gallons of water. In comparison, pork only requires 576 gallons, while chicken only requires 468 gallons. By replacing one steak per week with chicken, you could save nearly 70,000 gallons of water each year! And if you ate vegan one day per week, you’d save even more!
And of course, get bluebot! Once you have bluebot on your property’s water line, you can input your monthly water bill and set a goal to save on your usage, and your bill costs! Simply tell bluebot how much you want to save, and we’ll keep track of your progress and encourage you along the way.
This app helps track the consumption and leakage of water.
In a day and age when we can track almost anything on our smartphones, it’s tough to understand why we haven’t started monitoring our water consumption through mobile phones.
Although 75% of our planet is covered by water, only 0.003% of it is fit for human consumption. Water is a scarce resource, and it’s high time we start keeping a check on its consumption the way we track our heart-rate, air quality, energy consumption, etc.
Now, a talented bunch of industry experts and scientists have developed an IoT-enabled water-meter called bluebot v8.1 that can help people track consumption and leakage of water through an app on their smartphones.
“During the testing phase, our users were able to reduce their property’s water bill by up to 42% over three months by implementing minimal changes to their water use habits. We plan to help millions in the US and Canada,” says Nicole Barkis from the core team of bluebot.
How it Works
The universality of the app is such that anyone can install it by clamping it on copper, PVC, PEX, or galvanized water lines, ranging from ¾-2 inch pipe sizes. It’s ideal for any property with an up to 2 inch water line, single-family homes, townhouses, condos, apartments, small businesses, and second homes.
After installing the product on a pipe, the user can plug in to power, open the app, connect via Wi-Fi, and access the water consumption information through their smartphone. It captures around 43,200 data points per day to help keep an eye on water leaks, reducing monthly bills and promoting sustainability.
The data is captured and transmitted through an app within seconds, and sometimes even faster.
Keep Tab on Every Penny
Regardless of the user’s location, they can have a second-by-second account of water consumption in their property. This makes it most suited for the vacation rental segment as well. With one bluebot app, vacation homeowners can connect multiple bluebot devices, which means they can track water consumption at several properties with just one smartphone.
It comes with a ‘Dollarize™’ feature that helps users convert water consumption on any specific use into a dollar amount. bluebot allows them to know how much they are spending on dishwashers or irrigation. Small business owners and households can benefit from this feature because it will help them keep a tab on every penny they spend on the water.
Crowdfunding at Indiegogo
The founders started working on the concept of bluebot in 2017. Over the next three years, they refined its effortless installation, technology, and interface design. The core team comprises ultrasonic flow industry experts with a combined 55 years of flow product development expertise, strengthened by a special focus on ultrasonic sensor technology and flow calibration. The team also has a Harvard Law alum, a Yale Water scientist, a bunch of talented engineers, and a particularly creative duo.
Their efforts yielded desired results, as bluebot meets all the requisite standards of consumer electronic devices set by the FCC and CE. The founders also hold a US patent on the technology behind bluebot.
They are seeking backers through a crowdfunding campaign at Indiegogo here. They are currently testing the units and are also prepared for scaling. The target is to begin fulfilling Indiegogo backers in October 2020 with the first round of units once the final round of testing is complete.
Each month I receive the bill for my rental property’s water, and communicate the cost to my tenants to include in their monthly rent. In the past there have been a few higher bills that have raised questions since they don’t receive the bill directly from the water company. bluebot has given my tenants ultimate transparency and the ability to monitor costs and usage as they are occurring. They love the ability to see their usage in real time, and I like knowing they’re prepared for their water bill and being mindful of their usage.
Water damage can be hard to find and expensive to repair. Most property owners keep an eye on the water lines under a sink or toilet to ensure no obvious leaks are causing damage, but what about other areas in your home?
With bluebot, you can keep an eye on your property’s water usage and know when you are experiencing a leak, allowing you to catch it before it becomes costly to repair. Here are some of the most common causes of water damage:
Plumbing Water Leaks Inside The Wall
When you notice standing puddles of water on or near the wall, discoloration or drips on the wall itself. You can also pay attention to foul or musty smells, or listen for dripping sounds behind the drywall itself. If you have a spike in your water usage but it isn’t coming from an appliance or fixture, you might have a leak inside your wall and it’s time to bring in a professional.
Water Heater Leaks
Leaks in your hot water heater generally occur when it’s past the expected life range. If you’ve been using the same water heater for more than 20 years, you probably have some rust and corrosion deterioration that can cause a slow leak or even a large burst. It’s important to keep up with water heating system maintenance. Prior to installing your bluebot, you can remove the drain pipe, you may hear a hissing sound or notice a puddle underneath the tank. Placing bluebot directly on your main water line near your hot water heater is a great location for bluebot and will provide total peace of mind for your home.
Your washing machine often accounts for a large amount of water use in your home. Leaks generally arise when a seal or water supply hose ruptures. Failures can happen after continued use. To identify a leak, you can look for puddles nearby, inspect your hoses and seals for signs of wear (cracking or other marks). You may also notice build up of mold or mildew, indicating a slow leak.
To most, this is one of the most obvious locations to keep an eye on for leaks in the home, office, garage, etc. Faucets that are left on, don’t create a full seal to close, or caulking that has disintegrated can all be common sources for leaking water. Check for puddling water, mildew, or discoloration below your sink. While you may think placing bluebot under your sink is a great place, the sink water lines actually have a lot of air in them and will not provide accurate data for bluebot. Placement on the main water line is required as it is pressurized and allows our patented ultrasonic technology to work exceptionally well.
You might be surprised to find that your newly installed low-flow toilet is the culprit of a pretty large leak. Toilets often have a faulty flapper, a high water level, or a water-logged float that results in constantly running water to the toilet, consuming hundreds of gallons every month if left unattended. If none of those seem to be the issue, you may have a broken valve. Outside of constantly running toilets, your toilet may also spring a leak at the flange and wax ring. You can check behind your toilet while you’re cleaning it and look for any mold, mildew, puddles, or small drips as an indicator that something is failing.
Shower & TubLeaks
Showers and tubs can be some of the harder to detect, because they are often hidden behind tiles. You will often have lower water pressure in your shower if you have a leak. Tiles may also begin to lift if there is a leak behind the walls.
If your refrigerator has a water supply or an ice maker it’s susceptible to leaking. Identifying these leaks can be difficult as they often happen over a long period of time and go unnoticed. Having a reliable water monitoring system like bluebot can help provide insight into your home’s water usage and mitigate leaks before they become a bigger issue.
Your dishwasher is similar to your refrigerator in the sense that leaks can happen over long periods of time and go unnoticed, causing a lot of damage to your floor. If you suspect a leak, unplug the appliance and check behind it for any puddles, mold, or damage to the walls.
Irrigation leaks can become catastrophic very quickly, as they are easy to overlook until your water bill arrives at the end of the month. Irrigation heads can fail and are often in areas you may not frequently check on your property. Placing bluebot on your irrigation line and monitoring it separately is the best way to ensure your watering schedule stays on track and your water bill is as it should be.
Did you know the average home water damage insurance claim is over $10,000?
If you’d like to avoid catastrophic leaks in your home, simply order your bluebot today. Install in minutes with no tools needed to gain total peace of mind regarding your home’s water utilization, and catch leaks before they become a bigger issue. Your wallet will thank you.
Original story by Cory Reppenhagen 9/4/2020 on MSN.com
Colorado is in a severe drought. What does that mean for the water supply?
The drought monitor, which is updated by the Drought Mitigation Center every Thursday, shows that 99% of Colorado is still under drought conditions, with just a slight expansion of level three severe drought.
Front Range residents are starting to notice the drought in their neighborhoods. The city of Boulder said they are experiencing dry ponds in their parks and open spaces.
While that does not impact the treated water supply, they also said that Boulder Reservoir may also appear dramatically low soon. The city, along with Northern Water, have started to drain the lake for routine maintenance.
Other reservoirs around the area have been showing low storage levels because of the drought.
“You might see that Chatfield got a little bit low this summer, lower than normal,” said Nathan Elder, the manager of water supply for Denver Water.
He said the grim description of the drought does not necessarily reflect the current status of the water supply.
While Colorado’s water supply appears to be in decent shape this year, it is a haunting reminder that we need to be ever more mindful of our water consumption. Our planet’s water resources are a finite supply, and this can be a surprise for states that are not used to operating in a water-conscious mentality.
Just because the majority of the US considers California, Arizona, Texas and New Mexico to be the states that have to worry about drought conditions, the fact of the matter is that as years go on, water shortages will affect a majority of the country over the coming years.
My long term rental property houses 8 families and due to the city’s metering, I have always included the water in the monthly rent as it’s much simpler. In recent months as the water rates have increased, it’s been harder to factor in how much the bills will be and factor in to the rental rates. I’ve noticed that the tenants don’t tend to conserve when they have no concept of how much they’re using or how much it costs.
While I still haven’t switched to independent unit billing, putting a single bluebot on the whole building’s water main and sharing with all 8 townhouses have shown everyone has been a little more conscious toward their usage and we’ve managed to go from the 3rd tier (highest rate) to the 2nd tier which has saved me an average of $450 each month.
Something I’m also able to consider in the future with how easy and universal bluebot is, is placing one on each unit’s water line and splitting up the bill according to each unit’s usage. If the California water rates continue to rise in the future, we’ll be going that route as it will be the most transparent way for everyone to feel comfortable with the change in billing, and it’ll be great for my bottom line.
According to ipropertymanagement.com, non-weather related water damage is the second highest category of insurance claims, and we wholeheartedly agree with them that water damage is everybody’s worst nightmare. If you’ve never had a water damage incident, consider yourself very lucky. What starts as a small leak can turn completely catastrophic if left unattended for even short periods of time.
The top causes of water damage in the home are appliance leaks or failure (dishwasher, washing machine, refrigerator, or sinks being left on), sewer backups or clogs, water overflow & buildup, and plumbing leaks or burst pipes.
Water damage results in over $13B of damage and removal costs each year in the U.S. over 14,000 water damage emergencies every day, and an average home insurance claim of $10,234!
So, how can you protect your property from becoming part of these statistics? With bluebot!
Gain total water awareness with bluebot on your property, and be in complete control. Set alerts, goals, and keep an eye on costs with our Dollarize™ feature.
#mywaterstory began with fire, but not in the way you might think. We unknowingly left a candle burning in a bathroom and left the house. The candle managed to catch fire to a wicker basket, and the entire bathroom ended up engulfed in flames. Thankfully we left the door closed which managed to contain the fire to the bathroom, but it ended up melting the PVC pipe underneath the sink causing a massive leak. The water put the fire out but continued to flood through the entire house for nearly 4 hours. Our whole house had over 10″ of standing water and the drywall began soaking it up. All our furniture, electronics, everything was ruined. The insurance company had to tear the house completely down to studs and refinish everything. It ended up costing over $50,000 in damages that could’ve been significantly reduced with bluebot.
Do you have a #waterstory ? We’d love to hear it! Send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org or post on your preferred social media using #mywaterstory
Water is pretty expensive in California, but guests from out of state aren’t always as mindful of the drought conditions and the need to conserve. My vacation rental is usually quite profitable, but families that bring extra guests or use significantly more water than they should push my water bill into the higher tier and cut into my profits pretty significantly some months. A friend told me about the bluebot beta and I was able to get a device to put on my Airbnb. Once they added the sharing feature, I was able to share the data with my guests and now I’m even factoring water usage into my rental contracts! Since the average person should use no more than 150 gallons per day, I can charge for usage above that. The guests seem to like the ability to see their usage and what the water costs are. I’ve already noticed some improvement and I’m looking forward to being able to analyze the long term benefits and cost savings.
Do you have a #waterstory ? We’d love to hear it! Send us a message at email@example.com or post on your preferred social media using #mywaterstory
To revolutionize how people interact with water and change the world, one bluebot at a time.