Sunday, January 2, 2011

Waste Not, Want Not.....shower water

My showers normally use 1 gallon of water in an Arizona Green Tea jug painted black,  heated by one of two virtually free solar reflectors made from dumpster dived components in my back yard where I shower. But Tampa is having a very chilly DRY La Nina winter, and after 15 freakin' frigid years in icy Colorado, the last thing I wish to experience at 57 back home here in Florida is a cold shower that leaves my gonads nestled up against my tonsils! So guess who has been showering indoors the last few weeks? I keep in the bath tub a 3 gallon plastic jug that used to contain snack crackers, and use it to catch the water from the spigot until the water (and pipes) warm up. I was amazed to see that I fill it up every two showers! Think of all the potable water wasted across the country by people also wanting a cozy shower waiting for the water to get warm. This captured water goes straight to veggies growing in my Water Wise Container Gardens, plus roses growing in same. I confess I waste the water coming out of the ultra low flow shower head as the pipe heats up, plus I let the water go down the drain because if I stand in a catchment tub there like I do outdoors, it scratches the wonderfully trippy sponging of marine stain I applied to the tub some years ago to hide the ancient gnarly looking porcelain. ( see pics ). I will look for a smaller jug I can put over the shower head to catch that water as the pipe heats up.....I just hate getting into a COLD shower.   John


  1. Most marine stain contains arsenic and other highly toxic chemicals to keep algae and other organisms from growing on ship hulls. It is probably slowly leaching arsenic into your water. That's a good reason not to reuse that water in your garden—but I'd still be concerned about standing and bathing in it.

  2. If you still want to reuse that water (see above comment) You can plug the drain before you start and use those flexable large totes to scoop most of the water out at the end to water your plants (plus they have handles for easy handling and pouring!) That's what we do : )

    From a fellow Tampa Gardener!!

  3. Thanks! I did not know that about marine stain. I sealed it with three coats of clear acrylic the year I painted the tub and stall to make it glossy. I generally shower indoors 4-5 times a year, and that water goes down the drain. The water I am saving now is as it comes out of the spigot. Thanks for the heads up about acrylic marine stain! John