ESSAY 7: Household Products and Water Use   

  • Your essays should be about 1000 words, in 12 font and double-spaced. This means you should devote a good paragraph or more to each part. Include the word count at the top of the assignment.
  • Please make an effort with your grammar and your spelling. I require college-level work.
  • No late assignments will be accepted. Submit online. 

 Please separate your answers clearly (with spacing) into the separate parts, labeling Part 1, Part 2, etc…. 

Part 1

      • Look around your house and identify 10 toxic products.
      • Check the kitchen for cleaners, the bathroom for toiletries, the medicine cabinet, your cosmetics, garden products and the garage or tool area.
      •  Research them and write down why/how they are toxic.
      • For each product suggest alternatives that are safer.
      • No credit unless an alternative is presented!
      • You can research alternatives on the web.
      • Please cite your sources and give the url address.  Do not just copy and paste word for word from a source- use your own words
      • If you cant find 10 toxic products in your home, good for you!
      • Go to the grocery store or the home of a friend or family member and look at the cleaning products there.
      • No excuses, find ten toxics!
      • Fill in the grid on the next page carefully.

Toxic Substance                    Alternative












  • Keep track of your water use for one week. Write it down and post it!
  • Some years ago, during the worst part of California’s drought, residents in Marin County were rationed to 200 liters per day. This is 1400 liters total per week. Using the information below, see how much in debt you will be at the end of a week if you are charged 1$ for each extra liter over your allowed 1400 liters.
  • Be as accurate as you can about your daily usage
  • Multiply your daily average  usage in liters by 30 to get your monthly usage of water
  • Convert the liters to gallons by dividing by 4.
  • State the total gallons you use per month.
  • Here are guidelines:


  • Automatic dish washing: 20 L each load
  • Hand wash faucet 12L per minute (low flow 6L per minute)


  • 200 liters each tub full


  • regular shower: 19 L per minute
  • low flow shower: 7 L per minute,
  • Air-assisted shower: 2 L per minute

Clothes Washing

  • regular washer 140 L per load
  • wash recycle: 100 L per load,
  • front loader: 80 L per load
  • hand wash faucet 12L per minute (low flow 6L per minute)

Brushing teeth, washing  hands

  • 12 L per minute (low flow faucet: 6 L per minute)

Toilet Flushing

regular toilet: 19 L per flush

low flow: 13 per flush

air assisted: 2 L per flush

Drinking Water

4 big glasses = 1 L


1 gallon = 4 liters

Hosing the driveway, Washing the car, Watering  plants

600 L per 10 minute

Part 2:

Make two GOOD suggestions on how you might realistically cut down on your water usage.

Part 3

Do you have a lawn?

How often is it watered?

Could you replace it with a xeriscape?

Which style of xeriscape do you like?

How much money would you save in the long run?


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