Water efficiency tips for businesses

Businesses and commercial operations are some of the biggest water users in South Africa and should be focusing on reducing waste water and conserving water wherever possible. The article below outlines some useful tips. To further reduce the ‘water footprint’, businesses should consider installing rainwater tanks and greywater recycling systems where feasible. Many businesses have ideal rooftops for rainwater harvesting and can potentially harvest thousands of litres of rainwater in a number of large water tanks.

water saving tips for businesses

General:

  • Designate a water efficiency coordinator.
  • Develop a mission statement and a plan.
  • Educate and involve employees in water efficiency efforts.

Equipment:

  • Install ultra-low flow toilets, or adjust flush valves or install dams on existing toilets.
  • Install faucet aerators and high efficiency showerheads.
  • Use water-conserving ice makers.
  • As appliances and equipment wear out, replace them with water-saving models.
  • Eliminate “once-through” cooling of equipment with municipal water by recycling water flow to cooling tower or replacing with air-cooled equipment.

Practices:

  • Detect and repair all leaks.
  • Minimize the water used in cooling equipment in accordance with manufacturers recommendations. Shut off cooling units when not needed.

Kitchens and Laundries:

  • Turn off dishwashers when not in use. Wash full loads only.
  • Scrape rather than rinse dishes before washing.
  • Use water from steam tables to wash down cooking areas.
  • Do not use running water to melt ice or frozen foods.
  • Handle waste materials in a dry state whenever possible.
  • Wash only full loads of laundry or select the appropriate washing cycle provided on the washing machine. Use a rinse water recycle system. Consider purchasing high efficiency equipment.

Outside:

  • Wash vehicles less often; use a commercial car wash that recycles water.
  • If you have a swimming pool, consider a new water-saving pool filter.
  • Lower pool water level to reduce amount of water splashed out.
  • Use pool filter backwash for landscape irrigation.
  • Use a pool cover to reduce evaporation when pool is not being used.
  • Sweep or blow paved areas to clean, rather than hosing off.

Source: EPA

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