Susan Carpenter, a writer for The Los Angeles Times and dedicated gray water gardener, is tired. And understandably so. After each of her 6-year-old son’s daily baths, she lugs 30 gallons of bath water (gray water is a term used to describe the wastewater generated from household sinks, baths, washing machines, and showers but not toilets) in a single pail to her garden where she uses the secondhand H2O to water her plants. The whole process requires about 15 laborious trips from bathroom to garden.

Carpenter, a self-confessed “maniac” about reusing gray water, considered installing a proper gray water treatment system but found it to be difficult, expensive undertaking. Carpenter's improvised, DIY system, as she notes below, has its perks and its drawbacks:

The upside is I now have a lower water bill -- and a raging pair of biceps, just in time for summer! The downside: The routine is a total drag.
And then Enviro Water Boy entered Carpenter’s life. This contraption from an Australian company called Greywater Recycling International is basically an aqua vacuum: it pumps water out of a bathtub, shower, fish tank, etc., stores it, and lets you pump it back out elsewhere.

Needless to say, after hundreds of trips in and out of her home lugging a sloshing bucket filled with murky water, Carpenter is in love with her new boy toy. She does note that there are drawbacks with Enviro Water Boy and that pushing a gray water harvesting system that holds over 130 pounds of water is still cumbersome but in terms of saved time, money and water, it can’t be beat.

Watch this special love story unfold in the video below. 


Via [LA Times]

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Enviro Water Boy to the rescue
Dedicated bath water recycler and LA Times journo Susan Carpenter gives her tired arms a rest and puts Enviro Water Boy to the test.