January marks the National Association of Professional Organizers Get Organized (GO) month, a nationwide movement encouraging businesses and individuals alike to clean up, organize and, by doing so, open new doors for living better.
Sounds great, right? But will donating Aunt Clara’s two-sizes-too-big Christmas gifts since 2001, and finally taking all those papers to the recycling center really have an impact on water conservation and you, personally, living more “water responsibly?”
I answer with a resounding YES! Celebrating GO month by making efforts to organize your home and office can go hand-in-hand with saving water, money… and possibly saving you a headache down the road! Here are a few ideas to be water wise while you organize:
Clear out the shut offs: While organizing, make sure shut-off valves (including the main water valve) are visible and accessible. This way, should emergency water stoppage be necessary, it can be done quickly and easily to minimize water leakage/damage. Print and attach a simple shut-off-valve tag from our leak detection kit for easier identification.
Give water heaters and appliances plenty of “personal space.” Clutter around water heaters, water softeners, dishwasher and washing machines can conceal leaks, giving minor leaks time to escalate into major problems (not to mention destroy items that get water-logged in the process)! By keeping a substantial “clear space” around all these appliances, you can see leaks more easily and make repairs more quickly.
Don’t forget the fridge: As you say good-bye to that lonely thanksgiving drumstick and freezer-burned ice cream from summers long past, keep an eye out for signs of leaks and problems in your water lines for icemakers and water dispensers. These include excessive ice accumulation in the ice-making unit and/or small puddles under the refrigerator.
Look for leaks: Most of the organization “hot spots” (basements, laundry rooms, bathrooms and kitchens) are also places where leaks can sneak up on you! Each time you “attack” a room for organizing, finish the job by checking for leaks.
Save room for saving water: Leave a little room in vanity drawers or a kitchen cabinet for tools to help you easily and regularly check for leaks. A small flashlight, vial of food coloring and how-to tips found in the water leak detection kit are usually all you need. Using these tools to find even a pinhole leak in your water system can save you 4,000 gallons of water a month!
So to all those concerned about water conservation, I say, let’s GO! A few extra steps taken while getting organized can go a long way in being responsible users of our water resources.