How to Recycle Water in a Laundromat

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Commercial frontload washers may use more than 30 percent less water than typical residential washers, according to the  Planet Laundry website.
Commercial frontload washers may use more than 30 percent less water than typical residential washers, according to the Planet Laundry website. (Image: laundromat image by Scott Patterson from Fotolia.com)

The World Bank projects that water will most likely become the natural resource to cause wars in the 21st century, the Aqua Recycle website reports. Significant water shortages are predicted by water managers in 36 states. The need to recycle water is growing more important. Recycling water in the laundromat industry is becoming more advanced. The Aqua Recycle website states that the net amount of water recycled and sent back through the machines to reuse is 85 percent of the washing machine's total water intake. How are they doing it?

Things You'll Need

  • PVC pipe
  • Lint traps
  • Carriers
  • Circulator pump
  • Storage tank
  • Permit (If required)

Buying a System

Contact your state department that deals with environmental protection to determine if a permit is required to install a laundromat water-reuse system. If one is required, request the paperwork and obtain a permit.

Contact a company that is licensed to sell laundry waste water recycling units.

Fill out the online form to request a quote and receive a cost-benefit analysis for your laundromat.

Speak with a sales representative when you receive the call. She will walk you through the purchase, delivery and setup of the water recycling unit. Because there are many different plumbing configurations in various different laundromats, exact installation steps will vary. You will need to have a sales representative visit your personal location to discuss the installation of the system with you.

Basic Installation

Decide where your waste water is flowing and where you can best use gravity to your advantage to allow the waste water to flow through the unit.

Discuss the numbers of units you may need for your facility with the sale representative.

Consider for your washers the needed lint traps that the waste water will flow through to the recycling unit. Install carriers for the lint traps to stop anything from flowing into the unit.

Plumb the drains from the washers. Build a manifold out of PVC pipe for easy and even distribution of the water to the units.

Attach the recycling unit and a temperature differential switch to a storage tank, either that you already own that will work for the unit or one that the company sells to you. If you don't already have a circulator pump built into your plumbing system, one needs to be added at this time.

Tips & Warnings

  • When using a washing machine at a laundromat, use liquid detergents instead of powdered. Powdered detergents hinder water reusing systems from recycling effectively.
  • Install front-loading washing machines in your laundromat. These types of machines save water compared to the traditional machines and will work more effectively together with your reusing unit to save you more money overall.

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