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# 1st County Water Bill Arrives

 by Jim Wang Email   Print

I just received my water bill from the county and it turns out that over the last 93 days (August 8 – November 9), my girlfriend and I consumed 19,449 gallons of water – approximately 209 gallons a day! For the pleasure of temporarily using the county’s water, the bill comes out to be \$91.62. I’ll include the itemized bill below (for your viewing pleasure) but it seems to be that thirty dollars a month seems awfully high considering I used to pay about \$10 a month in my apartment and I hardly believe my water consumption has increased considerably. Incidentally, in my county, the summer rate per 100 cubic feet of water (~748 gallons) is \$2.71 (\$1.11 for the water, \$1.61 for the sewer usage).

Item Consumption
(100 cu. ft)
Rate
(Summer)
Amount
Charged
Water Usage 26 \$1.11 \$28.86
Water User Charge \$7.60
Sewer Usage \$1.61 \$41.86
Sewer User Charge \$5.80
State Bay Restoration Fee \$7.50
Total: \$91.62

I didn’t think I was consuming 104.5 (209 total, half for me, half for my girlfriend) gallons of water when usually I’m only home for about 12 hours a day? A typical household of four consume approximately 260 gallons a day (University of Minnesota)! A flush of the toilet costs around 6 gallons, a ten minute shower takes 50, dish washing costs 15, and finally using the faucet (brushing teeth, hand washing, etc.) costs about 2. When you add that all up, I can sort of understand my consumption reaching 104.5 gallons a day but when you first look at it… it seems high.

Anyway, so given the bill, that puts the cost of a gallon of water (and sewer, plus the fixed user charges and State Bay Restoration Fee) at \$0.00471, which means now we can play some fun math given the figures from Minnesota:

Activity Est. Gallons Cost
Toilet Flushing 5 2.8 cents
Bathtub 30 14.1 cents
Shower (10 mins) 50 23.55 cents
Laundry (top loader) 60 28.2 cents
Dishwashing 15 7.0 cents
Teeth-brushing 2 0.94 cents
Hand-washing 2 0.94 cents

Incidentally, that U of Minnesota page also has some water conservation tips that I’ll probably be looking into.

Photo courtesy of Handcolored.

### 4 Responses to “1st County Water Bill Arrives”

1. Caitlin says:

my water bill has definitely dipped since switching to the front loader, now that you’ve posted your figures I think I’ll do a little similar analysis. All this facsination with water usage statistics and APYs is really making me feel like an utter geek ðŸ˜‰

2. Rob Carlson says:

My house averages about 96 gallons per day for two people, which made me a little suspicious too. I suppose its easy to lose track of how much water goes down the drain during a shower, or how much the washing machine spits out.

Since that only winds up being about \$12 per quarter here in Baltimore County I don’t sweat it.

3. Something else to be aware of are manditory minimums, especially if your sewer bill is also tied to water consumption. In our county, we are charged for 2,000 gallons per month, whether we use it or not.

4. Rick says:

Interstingly enough, that is almost exactly what I am paying in my new home. It is just my wife and I and our bill this month was \$90.08. I will have to go check and see what my usage stats were compared to yours.

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