With water levels falling drastically and several states across India facing a severe water shortage, a simple device called an aerator could come in handy in controlling the flow of water in households and thereby conserving it.
Aerators are small attachments that are fitted at the end of water taps or can be inserted inside the spout.
The purpose of an aerator or flow regulator is to maintain a constant rate of water flow, which is not affected by pressure fluctuations.
Aerators come in the form of mesh screens that divide the flow of water into multiple small streams by adding air in between.
The volume of water flowing from the tap gets appreciably reduced as the water stream is diluted with air. This results in water savings and aerators also minimise splashing in sinks.
How does it work?
Since water pressure is unaffected, there is hardly any difference in the amount of water coming out from an aerated tap. Users can benefit from normal water flow while maintaining water efficiency at the same time.
Tap aerators are of use especially with older taps which typically supply around 15 litres of water per minute. An aerator can help cut the water flow by less than half to 6 litres of water per minute.
Aerators can be installed on 95% of taps and as per estimates, their use can save up to 1,274 litres of water in a month.
Aerators are available in India in various shapes and sizes and can be bought for anywhere between Rs 150 to Rs 650.
Depending on the stream patterns, there are there main types available viz. aerated (standard spray of air mixed with water), laminar (non-splashing solid stream) and spray (miniature shower).
You can even install the aerators yourself. Replacing aerators is also easy, all you need to do is just unscrew the old one and put the new one. And if you are unable to figure it out, you can always rely on your plumber to set it up for you.
According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, aerators are the single-most effective water saving technique that can be employed in homes.
Not only do aerators result in efficiency but by reducing monthly water consumption, they lead to utility bill savings as well.