We've already had some helpful tips for saving water around the house, but here are a few more you may not have thought of:
- Consider installing a water-saver shower head. They are inexpensive, easy to install (just screw on) and can save you up to 7 litres of water per minute. (It’s true!)
- Aerating taps are also inexpensive and can reduce water flow by 50%.
- Having a shower uses around ⅓ less water than having a bath.
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- Keep an eye out for dripping taps. Forty-five drips a minute wastes around 1000 litres a month (equivalent to 10 bathtubs!!!)
- Wash up in a plastic bowl and tip onto your garden when finished.
- Use the same bowl to catch the excess while waiting for the hot tap to run hot.
- Boil the kettle full and use the excess to wash something up.
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- Keep the water from boiling vegetables and when cool tip onto garden. It’s good for the plants. So is cold tea.
- The water left after boiling potatoes is great for making soups or stews.
- Consider whether you can direct the run-off from your washing machine out to the garden, although be careful not to make the washing machine work harder than it should. Ideally a run-off hose should be at ground level (not up and out of a window, for example) so the machine doesn't have to pump water uphill as this can burn out the motor.
- Do you have a rainwater tank or know someone who does? Even if you’re not keen on the taste, this water can be used for things like: Pets, washing up, making up cordial, cooking, etc. I started off by mixing small then larger amounts of rainwater into spring water to get used to the taste gradually. Now I’m happy to drink rainwater. (Before doing this, check that your rainwater tap has a filter.)
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- Do you have a dual-flush toilet? You will usually find that a half flush will do the job sufficiently for either.
- Cut the bottom off 2 litre plastic bottles and push the neck into the ground around trees. Fill with water and allow to slowly feed directly to the trees roots.
- When cleaning out your aquarium, pour the old water onto your garden.
- Make sure your hot water system thermostat is not set too high. Adding cold water to very hot water to cool it down is wasteful. Eighty or ninety degrees C is more than hot enough. This can save you up to 30% of your water-heating bill.
- Check your toilet cistern for leaks by putting a few drops of food dye into the cistern. If you have a leak, coloured water will appear in the bowl before the toilet has been flushed. New seals are inexpensive and easy to replace.
- Before letting the water out of the bath, use the water to bath the dog, wash floors etc., or fill a couple of buckets and use this to wash the car. The same goes for your shower. I have two rectangular buckets in the shower that I use to catch water, which I then pour into my washing machine.