Water and Utility Conservation to Reduce Restaurant Costs

By TriMark R.W. Smith

Water and Utility Conservation

Water is a valuable resource from our environment; using it responsibly can improve your bottom line, advance your reputation and help the world around you. With many commercial kitchens and dining establishments using between five and six thousand gallons of water each day, there is room for more conservation. To get started in reducing the water your company utilizes, take a moment to develop an action plan.

Here are some easy ways to decrease your water waste and operating expense.

Practices to Implement

Break the Running Water Habit

Faucets and water-consuming equipment left on when not needed is inefficient and costly. Train staff to regularly turn off taps and equipment when not in use. Shutting off idle appliances cuts down on electricity costs in and reduces water usage.

Fix Leaks Promptly

Sudden or hidden leaks in your commercial kitchen can add thousands of dollars to your yearly water bill if not repaired in a timely manner. Address problems quickly and consider calling a professional for their recommendations on how best to reduce water consumption.

Water Saving Equipment

Purchase water-consuming kitchen equipment such as steamers, ice machines and dishwashers that meet Energy Star water efficiency standards.

Pedal-operated faucet controls at major sinks in your kitchen require the use of a foot to produce a stream of water. This reduces the chances of faucets being left on unnecessarily.

Serve Upon Request

Implement a policy of serving water to your guests only when they request it. This should also apply to pitchers left on the table.

A cost-saving measure is to reduce the size of your water glass. It is recommended to utilize glasses that are 8 oz. in capacity, which reflects an average serving.

Practices to Avoid

  • Eliminate the practice of running water to melt ice or frozen food.
  • Avoid using the dishwasher until fully loaded.
  • To conserve water and energy, keep dishwashing equipment turned off when not in use.
  • Promote the use of water from steam tables to wash and sanitize your preparation areas.
  • Use ponded water in prep sinks to wash produce in order to minimize instances of continuously running water.
  • Prevent an ongoing water flow to clean the drain trays of your beverage station. It is a common practice to only clean the trays as needed.
  • Refrain from leaving the water supply on for equipment rooms that are not being used.

Insightful Resources

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Gain valuable information for reducing the amount of water usage with USDA’s helpful articles and guides.

Also, develop an understanding of the Soil and Water Resources Conservation Act to make sure your hotel, restaurant or casino is adhering to these laws.

Water, Use it Wisely

Discover over 200 simple water-savings tips to implement in your commercial kitchen.

Hotel Business Review

Learn about strategies on how to effectively decrease your water consumption in the hospitality industry.

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