Are you spending too much on your water bills? Here are some sneaky ways to save water.

Between refreshments, kiddie pools, and an ever-escalating water balloon war with the neighbors that will likely end in property damage, there's plenty of ways to use water over the summer. If you're not careful, however, these activities can quickly turn into higher water bills. We've already talked about three ways to save water during the summer, and now we're back with a few more. 

Grow Native Plants

If you're trying to grow tropical plants in Colorado, you can expect high water bills. Even if you're not trying any crazy greenhouse projects, trying to keep plants from a different biome alive can take a lot more water. The advantage to native plants is that they're used to surviving on natural rainfall, so they probably won't need the consideration as fancy plants. Additionally, native species often share biomes, meaning you're not as likely to see one type of plant completely choke out the others if you plant them close together. 

Let Your Lawn Grow

You might like how your lawn looks with a military-length haircut, but adjusting your lawnmower blade is an effective way to reduce your water bill. Instead of cutting your grass super short, instead set the blade to 2" above the ground. Taller grass offers a natural, cooling shade for roots and holds moisture better. This means that it requires less water to stay green. Additionally, consider mulching your lawn clippings. These are a valuable source of moisture that you can use to nourish your grass without having to use the sprinklers as much. 

Put Plastic Bottles in Your Toilet Tank

This one sounds like a joke, but it's actually a super practical way to cut down on your daily water usage. Take two plastic side bottles and put a handful of pebbles or weights inside to weigh them down before filling them with water. Screw the lids on and put them in the toilet tank, taking care to keep them away from any moving parts or valves. These bottles will take up space in the tank that would normally be refilled with water, which passively cuts down on how much water your toilet uses per flush. You might not see the savings right away, but the reduction adds up.

Load Up Dishes and Laundry

Running a dishwasher or washing machine can take a lot of water. If you're just using it to clean a few plates or shirts, then you're ultimately using a lot of water for a relatively small task. Don't forget that this also means that you'll likely be doing more loads than needed, resulting in higher water bills. While this is a problem that's technically solvable by regressing to a greasy college state of being where you only wash things twice a semester, there's a better way. Try to maximize the number of dishes or amount of laundry that you can wash in a single load. Assuming that you're not trying to get rid of any horrible smells, wait until you've got a complete load. 

What are some of your favorite tricks for saving water? Let us know in the comments!