Water saving tips
By following these suggestions you can reduce your water consumption by 45%:
- If you wash your dishes by hand, don't leave the water running when rinsing them.
- Keep a bottle of drinking water in the refrigerator so you don't waste water running the tap to cool the water down.
- Don't leave water running while you clean vegetables. Put the plug in the sink.
- Turn off the tap when shaving or brushing your teeth.
Water saving tips outdoors
Nearly two-thirds of water used by householders during the summer goes into the garden. Often it is wasted and too little is absorbed by the plants. To help reduce this wastage try use the following tips:
- Avoid watering in the heat of the day or in windy weather.
- Water your plants every fourth day in the summer, but water for longer periods. This makes the plants hardier and encourages the roots to go deeper into the soil.
- If you have a lot of annuals or ferns, use a micro spray system. This will ensure water is absorbed and not wasted.
- Use a timer with your sprinkler. A forgotten sprinkler wastes more than 1000 litres of water per hour.
- Water the roots, not the leaves. Watering the leaves is not beneficial as it increases water loss through evaporation.
- Use a trigger hose to control the water while moving the hose around.
- Use a good mulch. This can prevent up to 70% of evaporation loss. Well rotted compost is best.
- Don't water the paths. Cleaning with a broom is quicker and more efficient.
- Don't allow children to play with the hose. They can waste over 1000 litres of water every hour.
- There are a number of water saving devices that can assist you with conserving water outdoors.
Water saving tips indoors
- Use your washing machine for full loads only. Each time you run your washing machine, you use about 100-200 litres of water.
- Install water-saving shower heads or flow restrictions. Many shower heads put out 20 litres of water a minute, while 10 litres is enough.
- Install or convert to a dual flush toilet. This allows you to use only half the water when needed.
- If you have a water meter, carry out regular checks for leaks.
- Commercial properties: purchase urinal control valves. These can save between 86% - 96% of previous annual water consumption.
Water saving tips - pools
Here are some helpful hints for efficient water use for all sorts of pools:
- To avoid water borne health risks it is essential that you add chlorine in the right dose to pool water. Chlorine levels are easily maintained in the ideal range of 1 to 3 parts per million by using inexpensive testers or pool test kits. These kits will also tell you what the acidity or alkalinity (pH) of your pool is and enable you to keep this around 7.5.
- Chlorinating pool water will keep it cleaner for longer and reduce the need and frequency of refilling.
- It is best practise to have a filter system for your pool.
- A floating pool cover will greatly reduce the amount of chemicals you need to add to the water, and will also minimise loss of water through evaporation.
- By utilising roof water, home pools can operate independently of the main water supply.
- Encouraging swimmers to keep as much water inside the pool as possible will mean you won't have to top up the water level as often.
- To avoid the cost and effort associated with maintaining a pool at home, consider visiting one of the city's public pools or taking a trip to a beach or lake instead. Commercial pools are designed to use water efficiently and recycle splashed water, while a number of beaches and lakes are within easy driving distance of Hamilton.
Smart Water and water restrictions
In summer, we face a lot less rain than the rest of the year and on top of this, the amount of water people use increases (on things like watering gardens and filling up swimming pools). The combination of these things puts pressure on our water supply.
Water restrictions are put in place to make sure there is enough water for everyone to use during this time. To find out if any water restrictions are in place now visit www.smartwater.org.nz