Greywater Systems & How Recycling Works
If you are like most people, you probably have not given much thought to what happens to the water you use when showering or using the washing machine. This type of water, which is known as “greywater”, is somewhat different from the water that flows from your tap or carries human waste from your home. As a result, your method of greywater disposal bears some closer consideration.
How Does Greywater Leave the Home?
Under typical conditions, household plumbing systems are designed to combine grey water with sewage water, also known as “black water.” Then, it leaves the home through the sewage removal system, heading either to a septic tank or water treatment facility.
While black water can serve no additional useful purpose in your home, such is not the case with greywater. Greywater contains a much lower level of harmful contaminants when compared to black water, which means it can be reused safely and effectively in conjunction with your home’s irrigation system.
Greywater Recycling Systems
An efficient way to maximize greywater disposal is through the use of a greywater recycling system like the Aqua2use product line from the Water Wise Group. These systems generally consist of a small unit that is installed outside your home and is connected to your household appliances as well as your home’s irrigation system.
Each time you shower or use your appliances, the unit collects and filters the water, removing impurities without the use of chemicals. The filtered water is then delivered via your irrigation system to wherever you need it, including flowerbeds, gardens and landscaping areas. Instead of inefficient greywater disposal, you benefit from recycling what would otherwise be nothing more than wastewater. That’s about 40,000 gallons per year that you could be saving, and diverting to your yard rather than the sewer.
Why Choose Recycling as Your Method of Greywater Disposal?
Of course, you can continue with the typical greywater disposal method of simply letting it swirl down the drain. However, greywater recycling offers some important advantages. When you consider that as much as 60 to 70 percent of your household water budget is devoted to outdoor irrigation, an effective greywater system could save you a large sum of money on your water bills. You will also be assisting in water conservation efforts, saving up to 40,000 gallons of water annually. If you rely on a septic system as your black and greywater disposal method, you’ll be reducing the burden you place upon it.
Other Greywater Disposal and Recycling Considerations
If you are considering a recycling system as your greywater disposal method, there are a few things to keep in mind. If your soil is overly permeable or not permeable enough, or you do not have an area with enough soil to effectively process the greywater, recycling may not be practical. If you live in a cold climate, you may only be able to make effective use of recycling for irrigation purposes during the summer months. Some areas of the United States have certain restrictions against the use of greywater systems, although water shortages and other factors are leading to the loosening of restrictions in many regions.
Greywater System Guidelines to Also Consider
- Greywater should not be stored for more than 24 hours. If the greywater is stored for too long, the nutrients will begin to break down and the water will emit an unpleasant odor.
- Minimize contact with greywater. Greywater is not safe for humans or animals to ingest. It is advised to use greywater only to water flowers and plants, not vegetables, which will potentially get ingested.
- Ensure that greywater soaks into the ground. Try not to allow it to pool up or run off. Consider this when designing the area in which you are running greywater through drip lines. Stagnant greywater can create mosquito breeding grounds, as well as an area for potential human contact with greywater.
- Keep your greywater system simple with an Aqua2use Greywater System. The Aqua2use Greywater System product line offers systems with and without pumps. These systems require very little maintenance, require little energy, and are cost efficient.