Water Saving Strategies - In the Bathroom

About ¾ of the water used in the bathroom is used for washing ourselves, it is possible to have a great wash and save water.  Add to that around 40% of all water used in the home is in the bathroom, much of that is wasted.  Before buying new bathroom appliances check the manufacturer's water efficiency labels; selecting more water efficient products you can save money on water and electricity bills and help the environment.

TIPS FOR THE SHOWER
Water efficient showerheads use less than 9 litres of water a minute while their older style counterparts can use up to 20 litres a minute.  If you use a water efficient shower head you can save up to 50 litres for each shower.  Other ideas are:

  • Take shorter showers; limit time spent to soaping up, washing down and rinsing off.
  • Use a shower timer.  Choose a manual 4 minute egg time or an electronic timer that attaches to the wall or showerhead.  Or those of you who enjoy singing, 4 minutes is the average length of a song on the radio.
  • Capture water in a bucket while you are waiting for the hot water to heat up and use it in your garden. Your plants will love it.
  • Shave your legs in a partially filled the sink before taking a shower and use the running shower to rinse off.

TIPS FOR THE BATHTUB
Many people believe baths waste a lot of water, but in many instances taking a bath may use less water than showering. If you love soaking in the tub, consider these simple tips to ensure you are using your bath water wisely.

  • Only fill the tub with as much water as needed.  Use less water for children and pets.
  • Check the temperature as the tub fills, adding extra water to get the correct temperature after the bath has reached the right level is wasteful.
  • Regularly check the plug for leaks and replace when necessary.  Often the rubber seals dry out or crack and become ineffective.
  • Bucket some of the used bath water onto the garden, pot plants or lawn. Make sure you check any soaps or detergents used won’t harm your lawn or plants.

TIPS FOR HOT WATER SYSTEMS

  • Consider an instantaneous water heater if your water heater is a long distance from the bathroom.
  • Insulate hot water pipes to avoid wasting water while waiting for hot water to flow through.  This saves energy too.
  • Make sure your hot water temperature is not set too high, adding cold water to reduce the temperature of very hot water is wasteful.

TIPS FOR TAPS
A running tap wastes about 6 litres of water a minute, remembering to turn taps off, and fixing any leaks can save valuable water.  Here are some quick and easy tips to help save water when using your taps:

  • If you have a dripping tap consider getting it fixed, it can waste up to 20,000 litres of water a year.
  • Turn the tap off when brushing teeth, wet the brush and use a glass of water for rinsing.
  • Don’t rinse your razor under a running tap, fill the basin with a little warm water, its just as effective and less wasteful.

TIPS FOR TOILETS
A quarter of the water used in the bathroom is flushed down the toilet, it seems silly to waste valuable drinking water flushing the toilet.  With these simple tips it is easy to reduce water use in the loo. 

  • Buy a top rated dual flush toilet, remember to look for a four or more star water efficiency rating.  These toilets use as little as 4.5 litres for a full flush and 3 litres for a half flush and can save the average home up to 35,000 litres of water per year.  Older toilets can use around 18 litres of water per flush.  View Council’s incentives for installing dual flush toilets here. (insert link to rebates page)
  • Leaking toilet cisterns waste litres of water a day. 
  • Don’t use your toilet as a bin.  Feminine hygiene products, baby wipes, ‘flushable’ wipes and even goldfish should go in the bin.  Flushing these down the toilet not only waste water but places additional pressure on the sewer system and contributes to blockages.