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Three Ways to Conserve Water

Save water with personalized shower cycles, wood-clad rain barrels and solar pumps

by Graham Hiemstra in Design on 29 August 2011

Turning off the water while brushing your teeth is a fine start to addressing the challenges we face when it comes to the increasingly problematic resource. But to cope with what some scientists claim will be the biggest global concern in coming years calls for bigger and better innovations. The following three solutions currently on the market help greater water conservation efforts both in and outdoors.

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The most sensible way to save water is to do so literally. Turn to rainy weather experts with this barrel made by the Pacific Northwest-based Rainbarrel Man. The outfit hand builds these wood-clad, steel-banded barrels to order using salvaged lumber. Sensible and sturdy, the structures are the easiest way to "save a rainy day" while both reducing water pollution and storm water runoff. The deluxe garden barrel sells for $235 and ships fully assembled directly from their Portland, Oregon workshop.

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Now that you've got your rain barrel up and working, the next step is to add a pump system to help gardens stay hydrated and healthy during the dry months. The new solar-powered RainPerfect has a quick installation process and standard garden hose compatibility. Converting the sun's rays into energy, the device provides plenty of pressure to get reclaimed water to parched plants without using any electricity. Retailing for $139, check RainPerfect online for where to buy.

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Taking a more substantial stance on in-home water conservation, Pensar Development's Indulgence concept shower takes a holistic approach by drawing on individual routines to reduce water usage. Personalized cycles consisting of a low-flow initial rinse, followed by warming mist jets while you soap up and ending with a second low-flow rinse keeps users comfortable while reducing water and energy usage by more than half. To learn more about this ingenious concept, contact Pensar directly.

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