It took my husband and me a long time to work out the “greener” way to do the dishes (Old habits die hard.). If you think about the number of dishes we do per day, week, month, year, you realize just how much water is consumed. And most of us don’t do the dishes correctly. Do you keep the water running as you rinse your dishes and load them into the dishwasher? You’ll save a lot of money and conserve water simply by turning off the water as you load. Do you rinse the dishes so thoroughly before putting them into the dishwasher that they are practically clean? (That’s what my husband does.) The energy efficient dishwashers of today really don’t require much rinsing. They also use less water and energy. You may want to consider upgrading if your dishwasher is over 10 years old. Do you rinse dishes that really don’t need it? Why rinse a water or juice glass – just put it in the dishwasher. Do you reach for a new glass every time you get a drink? Keep the same water glass or coffee mug throughout the day to cut back on the number of dishes you use. The fewer dishes, the less there is to wash and the more water you save. Do you run the dishwasher after every meal, even when it is not full? Master the art of loading the dishwasher efficiently and run it only when full. Do you throw away the water you’ve cooked your vegetables in? Why not recycle it and water your plants with it – they’ll thrive on the nutrition from the vegetables.
When hand washing your dishes, do it the old fashioned way. If you have a double sink (if not, use a large pan), fill one with soapy water, one with clean. Put the dirty dishes in the soapy side and then rinse in the other sink. Many people hand wash each dish separately leaving the water running!
Lastly, always fix a leaky faucet. Leaks waste more water than you think.
There are many common sense things you can do to conserve water and energy when washing the dishes. Look at it as a game. It will make you feel good, especially when you see your reduced water bill!
Some information compiled from http://www.howtodothings.com/how-to-wash-dishes-without-wasting-water.