Dan Teague - Water, Electric, Gas and Oil
September 29, 2011 - Green Buildings
To assess water performance in a building in a simple, quantifiable way, our preferred metric is number of gallons a building uses per bedroom per day. Ideally, we would like to look at water use per person but we have found that number of people is a tough number to keep track of for building managers so number of bedrooms is a good proxy and stays fixed over time.
Here is a quick and dirty breakdown of what we've found in our water data: high performing buildings use 60 gallons per bedroom per day, average buildings consume from 60-120, and poor performers use 120 and above.
If you find any of your buildings fall in the "poorly performing" category you should start looking into getting a water audit and making upgrades right away. Of all the ways to save money in a building, water upgrades have some of the lowest first costs and a simple payback as short as a few months. Water conservation is the "no-brainer" of green upgrades in any poorly performing building.
Our data shows that replacing leaking toilets with better performing, water conserving toilets, and installing low-flow shower heads and faucets can in some cases reduce water bills by 50-60%.
Dan Teague is the director of business development for WegoWise, Boston.