Water is precious – use it but don’t waste it!
Keep the 3Rs of wise water use in mind every time you turn on the tap.
|REDUCE – Become conscious of the amount of water you’re using and look for ways to use less.|
|RETROFIT – Replace water guzzling toilets and appliances with more water efficient models or retrofit existing appliances with water saving devices.|
|REPAIR – Stop the leaks! In one year, a leak of one drip per second wastes 10,000 litres (2,167 gallons) of water – enough water to fill more than 60 bathtubs. Most leaks are easy to fix by simply changing worn washers.|
- Defrost food in the refrigerator or microwave rather than in the sink under running water.
- Instead of rinsing vegetables under running water, use a little water in the sink or a bowl.
- For instant cold drinking water, refrigerate some or use ice cubes.
- Keep a jug of drinking water in your refrigerator, this eliminates running the water to get cold and also helps for those that notice the taste or odour of chlorine in their water.
- If you must run water from the tap, save the water for watering plants or soaking kitchen pots.
- When hand washing dishes, don’t wash under running water, plug the drain and do a sink full at once.
- Use one sink for washing and one for rinsing. If you only have one sink, rinse washed dishes with a sprayer or a pot of water.
- Scrape rather than rinsing the food off dishes.
- Use your dishwasher only when you have a full load.
- When buying or replacing the dishwasher purchase one that is designed to conserve water and energy.
- Use garburators less often or switch to composting.
- Install new water-saving aerators on taps.
- Fix leaky taps!
- Toilet flushing accounts for 40% of household water use. Replace your old standard 13 to 27-litre toilet with a water-efficient one that uses as little as 6 litres of water per flush.
- Modify your old standard toilet with store-bought toilet dams or make your own dam using a plastic container full of water. Using a one-litre plastic water bottle will save one litre per flush. Be careful not to obstruct the mechanisms within the toilet tank.
- Don’t use the toilet as a trash can. Put trash (such as Kleenex) in the garbage instead of the toilet
- Replace your standard showerhead with a water-saving showerhead which used 9.5 litres per minutes or less. This can save 40% or more of the water used in showering.
- Take a quick shower. Reduce showering to 5 minutes instead of 10 minutes. This will save approximately 40 litres per shower.
- For baths, fill the tub only as much as is needed – in most cases to one-quarter full.
- Plug the bathtub drain before running the water to fill.
- Install new water-saving aerators on taps.
- Turn the water off while shaving or brushing your teeth.
- Make sure toilet flappers and other parts are not leaking (toilet flappers should be replaced every 2 to 5 years)
- Fix leaky taps and toilets.
- Wash only full loads making sure you don’t overload. If you must wash a small load of laundry, set the water-level indicator to “small”.
- Adjust water level setting to match load size.
- When buying or replacing the clothes washer purchase one that is designed to conserve water and energy.
- Set your water softener based on values provided by the Utility.
- Have your water softener serviced if water drains from the softener when it isn’t recycling.
- Re-use water collected from your dehumidifier to water plants or for other activities that don’t require potable water.
Green lawns without waste.
In the summer, we use 50% more water than during the rest of the year, most of which goes to our lawns and gardens. By using water wisely in the summer, you will waste less water while still maintaining a healthy green lawn and garden.
Give your sprinkler a rest!
Lawns don’t need to be watered every day. Watering every three to five days is sufficient, less often if it rains. When you do water, give it a thorough soaking. This will produce a deep root system and stronger grass. Daily watering results in shallow roots and weaker grass.
Choose a sprinkler which delivers large flat droplets and which suits the size and shape of your lawn.
If your grass is green… it doesn’t need watering.
Lawns only need a total of two to three centimetres of water a week. More is not better.
To determine how long it takes for your lawn to receive two to three centimetres, place a can under your sprinkler and time how long it takes to fill the can to the required amount.
By using an automatic timer on your sprinkler, you can program it to water your lawn only as much as it needs and at the right time of the day.
Suntanning and lawn watering don’t mix!
The best time to water your lawn is during the coolest parts of the day. Watering in the early morning when it is cool or in the early evening after the sun has gone down will reduce the amount of water lost to evaporation.
Don’t water grass on sunny days when water droplets magnify the sun’s rays, causing the grass to burn. Don’t water on windy days.
Short grass belongs on the golf course.
Cut your grass higher than usual (over six centimetres) to provide shade for roots. Taller grass holds water better and actually looks richer.
Trade in your grass.
Ask your local gardener about “xeriscaping” or “naturescaping” replacing your grass with native ground covers and flowers that require little upkeep and are drought-resistant.
Don’t let your pool get thirsty.
Use a swimming pool cover to prevent evaporation, keep debris out and keep heat in.
Give your car a sponge bath, not a shower.
If you wash your car with a running hose, you can use as much as 400 litres of water each wash. Instead, use a bucket and sponge to wash your car, then rinse it quickly using a trigger nozzle on your hose. This way, you can save up to 300 litres of water each wash.
Grass doesn’t grow on driveways… so why water them?
Never use your hose to clean your driveway or sidewalk. Use a broom instead.