How to Hack Your Toilet – Reduce Water Usage – And Save the City of Los Angeles

by Noelle Vincent,   March 16, 2015

Toilets use the most water out of any appliance in the home.  The amount of water it takes to flush a toilet can be as high as three or even seven gallons with every flush for older toilets.  Newer toilets have been standardized to empty 1.3 – 1.6 gallons per flush.  That means older toilets waste 3 – 5 gallons of water during each use!  If you are in Southern California and other areas subject to drought, you know how valuable it is for the 22 million people to each conserve the water in their homes and end wasteful practices.

Think of it this way: all the water in the tank is the amount of water that gets flushed.  So if you want to upgrade your toilet to be “low-flow”, you need to reduce the volume that the toilet tank holds.  Watch the video below to learn how to hack your toilet tank!

If you don’t already have 8oz. glass bottles in your home, be sure to save the bottles the next time you purchase a drink that has a screw-on lid (metal lids preferred).  After you’ve consumed your drinks, fill them with water and put them in your toilet tank.  Depending on the size of the tank, you can use one and up to three bottles.  Test it out.  See how it works, and then you don’t need to do anything more.  Over time, you’ll even forget that they are there.  Meanwhile, you’ll be saving gallons of water every day.  More than a thousand gallons each year!

When everyone in Southern California participates, that’s more than 22 billion gallons!

NOTE: Please use glass bottles and not plastic bottles.  Many types of plastic may contaminate the water supply while they linger in the tank.  Chemical contamination is the very thing we are trying to prevent.


Reduce your daily water usage and make a significant difference.  Respect your water!

And for those in Southern California—take action before we run out of water in 2016. 


Click here and here to find out more about water consumption and conservation for your home and business.

Water Conservation

Clean water and water conservation practices have become increasingly important for everyone to take part in, not only the government.  Since the government can’t regulate how the public uses water, except for specific cases such as limiting water usage for lawns and washing your car—we each must take a role in conserving our precious, life-giving resource.

Some of the most effective activities for conserving water include the following:

  1. Turning off the faucet while not in use
  2. Using low flow shower heads
  3. Adding bottles to your toilet tank to reduce water usage (Video Next Week!)
  4. Upgrading landscaping to water-conservative native plants and/or a rock designs
  5. Not pouring toxic chemicals down your drains
  6. Employing create ways to reuse water in the household


Not Pouring Toxic Chemicals Down the Drain – Water Conservation Principle #5

There are a variety of items that people should avoid pouring down the drain.  These include most common varieties of shampoo, conditioner, detergent, hair styling products, toothpaste, make up, soap, and commercial drain-unclogging chemicals.  Some ingredients in home products that are toxic include: sodium fluoride, triclosan, sodium lauryl sulfate, hydrated silica, aromatic amines (hair dye), Parabens, Isopropyl Alcohol, Petrolatum, Phthalates, Ethyl acetate, Talc and so many more!  Here is another list of toxins in household products.  Here is a list of common toxic chemicals in our environment.

Before you pour, think about the effects.  Once those toxic chemicals are added to our drinking water, they are pumped back to the water plant.  Then a tremendous amount of energy is consumed to get the water clean enough to drink again.  We can save energy and money by making better choices with the products we put down the drain.

One of the most toxic household items are chemical drain-unclogging agents such as Drano because they use Sodium Hydroxide as a main ingredient.  This causes chemical burns when it comes in contact with the skin, eyes, teeth, and hair.  It is also flammable and can result in permanent blindness and life-threatening symptoms just by being in contact with the it for only a short time.  Do you want something that caustic in your home?  Why would you want to put that down the drain into what will eventually become our drinking water?  Is it worth having hazardous chemicals in the home, especially given the risk it poses to pets and children—when there is another cheaper, more efficient method to clean out the clogs in your drain?

Click here and learn how to unclog your sink without using Drano and its brethren!



In our video, we demonstrate how to use baking soda (edible), vinegar (edible), and a sink plunger (inexpensive).  You can also use a drain snake to pull out the debris and avoid adding Sodium Hydroxide to our water supply.


Thank you for participating!  We’ll feature more videos that demonstrate clever ways to conserve water.

How to Make Your Own Toothpaste – Ask Noelle

by Noelle Vincent  February 16, 2015

Someone might ask, “Why would you want to make your own toothpaste when you can just buy a tube of toothpaste in the grocery store?”

Well, there are a few very good reasons.  Many mains brands of toothpaste contain chemicals that are hazardous to your health.  That’s why you should never swallow toothpaste, although many of those chemicals are still absorbed through the gums.  Because of FDA regulations, there is a warning label on the back of the tube.  For more information about the history of toothpaste labeling and regulation, click here

Now why would you want to put something in your mouth that it too toxic to ingest!?


Here are a few articles that explain:

The Colgate Triclosan Controversy

Other Articles

Another reason to avoid main brands involves their animals testing.  Many companies still test their products on animals by burning their eyes just so that the company put a warning label on the product stating not to get the product in your eye and avoid lawsuits.  Several nonprofits launched campaigns to put an end to these practices.



It’s cost effective to make your own toothpaste!  These substances are also edible.

  • Baking Soda – COST 50 Cents – Used up in about 9 months (6 cents/month)
  • Organic Coconut Oil – COST $5.99 – Used up in about 1 year (50 cents/month)
  • Organic Sesame Seed Oil – COST $6.99 – Used up in about 3 years (19 cents/month)


Also get a wide-mouth jar with a lid and something to stir with, like a dull, kitchen knife.

Mix equal parts coconut oil and baking soda.

When adding peppermint or sesame seed oil, add the desired amount which could be about 1 teaspoon.  You might have to add a bit more baking soda afterwards to balance out the texture of the concoction so that it remains paste-like.


Here are some articles that support brushing your teeth with oils and baking soda:


Toothbrushes comprise of materials that are very resilient to decomposition.  Thus, they contribute to a remarkable amount of waste.  If there are nearly 4.7 billion plastic toothbrushes manufactured each year, imagine how many toothbrushes are tossed into landfills or make their way into our oceans and waterways.

How many of those toothbrushes could pave a road or build skyscrapers?  How many houses of toothbrushes could we create from 4.7 billion?  If I had a dime for each brush…

The volume is preposterous.

Could we build a bridge from San Francisco to Japan out of toothbrushes?  One begins to wonder.  Is it necessary to make toothbrushes out of plastic?  NOPE!
One can brush with Bamboo.  They also have bamboo straws.



There’s another slick-looking, bamboo toothbrush here.





There are also a variety of recyclable and recycled plastic tooth brushes.


The handle is made from polypropylene, which was recycled from Stonyfield Farm yogurt cups.  These are available at Trader Joe’s.





There are also suave, hi-tech toothbrushes with USB drives, which would make a great Valentine’s Day present for your tech-enthusiast sweetheart.  Compliments of Goodwell & Company