Every little bit of water you save eases the strain on our water sources, saves you money and helps the environment. The graph below shows where water is used.
There are many ways you can save water in your home. We’ve listed several quick and easy hints that will help you save water:
Approximately 11% of water used in the average South Australian home is used in the kitchen for a variety of activities including washing the dishes, drinking, cooking and general cleaning.
Top tips to save water in your kitchen include:
- Install aerators on taps – aerators reduce the water flow and stop you using as much water.
- Choose water efficient appliances – look for appliances bearing the Water Efficiency and Labelling Standards scheme and power efficiency labels.
- Only turn the dishwasher on when it’s full.
- When you’re running the taps waiting for water to cool down or heat up, collect the water in a jug for use on the garden.
- Don’t leave taps running when washing vegetables or your hands.
- Fix any leaks as soon as possible.
- In every wet area try to use environmentally friendly cleaning products and detergents.
Of all water consumed in the average South Australian home, approximately 16% is used in the laundry.
One of the easiest ways of saving water in the laundry is to install a water efficient washing machine. Also in your laundry, you can:
- Don’t use the washing machine until you have a full load or make sure you adjust the load setting to suit your washing requirements.
- Fix any dripping taps and install aerators on taps.
- Consider reusing greywater from the laundry on the garden (make sure you check out all the planning, health and plumbing requirements before undertaking this activity).
Inside the average South Australian home, the greatest amount of water is used in the bathroom (20%) and toilet (11%).
One of the easiest ways of saving water in the bathroom and toilet is to install a water efficient showerhead and toilet cistern and ensure that you use them properly.
- Take shorter showers – you can save up to 11 litres of water every minute by installing a water efficient shower head.
- Install a dual flush toilet – this can save you up to 50% on every flush.
- Check for a leaking toilet cistern. Put food colouring in the cistern. If the colour shows in the toilet bowl without flushing, you’ve got a leak.
- Turn the taps off when you’re brushing your teeth, washing your hands and shaving.
- Install water efficient appliances wherever possible.
- Install aerators on your taps.
To help you save water in your garden:
- install a dripper system and only water during the permitted hours
- use mulch to prevent water loss through evaporation and prevent soil erosion. Mulch can also help to smother your weeds. (If you live in a high bushfire risk area, check with the County Fire Service about the best way to use mulch in your garden)
- plant indigenous native plants for your area – your local nursery, Trees for Life and Australian Plants Society or State Flora can help you choose appropriate species
- plant your garden in watering zones (hydrozoning). Plants that require large amounts of water should be grouped together and will help to reduce your water use
- choose a drought resistant lawn that will cope with our harsh, dry conditions
- don’t over water your lawn – train it to use less water by encouraging the roots to grow deeper. Also set your mower level higher during summer and let your lawn grow longer. Keeping grass longer shades the soil surface and reduces evaporation loss
- don’t water during windy weather – water will blow away from where it’s needed most.
- water proof terracotta pots before you plant. Terracotta pots are porous and allow the moisture to escape rapidly
- if you have an outdoor pool or spa keep them covered when not in use. Covers will help prevent water from evaporating.
- park your car on the lawn before you wash it and never let any water run into the stormwater drain. Alternatively, check out your nearest car washes and find one that recycles its water
- use a broom or rake to clean paths, paved areas and patios.
Another Water Saving Tip
Don’t forget you can also keep an eye out for leaking pipes and dripping taps. Here’s how:
1. Check your water meter at night when you have finished using water and are going to bed.
2. Record the number and do not use any water until you have checked the meter first thing in the morning.
3. If your reading has increased by morning – and you are absolutely sure nobody used water or flushed the toilet overnight – you may have a leaking pipe or dripping tap.
Source: SA Water
The above water saving tips were compiled by the South Australia government but most, if not all, can be applied to homes anywhere in the world, including South Africa. We would also recommend the installation of rain water tanks and rainwater harvesting systems. Rainwater tanks can store enough water to become totally independent of municipal water supplies (depending on rainfall, roof area and available space for water tanks). Always choose water tanks carefully; we recommend JoJo Tanks (South Africa) as they carry a 5-year guarantee and are of high quality at affordable prices. Click on the links below to see the various JoJo water tanks, JoJo rainwater tanks, JoJo tank stands, JoJo septic tanks and other JoJo Tanks products available in South Africa.
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