Monday, July 02, 2007

10 ways to save water

Watering Cans II by Dee Morgan
Watering Cans II


It sounds ridiculous to be writing about saving water but as it is falling in plenty supply at the moment, we could add it to a crop to harvest just in case there is a heatwave in store in July. Here at downshifting path we have 2 waterbutts which we use to water the plants in the polytunnel. We used to have a hosepipe and just simply switch it on, but we now water where it is necessary with the water we have in the waterbutts.




  1. Remember to turn off the tap while brushing your teeth - A running tap wastes over 6 litres per minute.
  2. A dripping tap wastes at least 5,000 litres of water a year - Thats enough water wasted to fill a paddling pool every week for the whole summer. Mending your dripping tap washer could save you over £18 per year. check the health of your taps today and make sure you have spare washers in the cupboard to deal with leaks as and when they appear.
  3. Compare your water usage when you wash the dishes. Hand-washing dishes typically uses about 63 litres per session - If those dishes are rinsed off under a running tap the total water used averages 150 litres. You could compare that with a modern dishwasher that uses as little as 15 litres of water per cycle. Make sure that you fill the dishwasher or you'll be wasting even more than if you were to wash up by hand. If you are looking for a new dishwasher, look for the energy efficiency 'A' rated machines since these usually waste the least amount of water. If you take a closer look at the energy label, it should tell you how much water the machine uses. Make responsible choices.
  4. A bath can use up a lot of water (over 100 litres!) - which is the equivalent of 3 people taking a shower.Many power-showers actually use more than a bath if you shower for more than 5 minutes. If you really cannot give up a bath, you can minimise your water use by reusing your bathwater to water your houseplants or garden. Wigglywigglers have a good gadget to help with this.
  5. Before starting your washing machine, wait for a full load - A full load uses less water than two half loads; so, you'll be able to save money on energy and water. Just like dishwashers, washing machines labelled 'A' on energy efficiency tend to be more water efficient.
  6. Fill a jug with tap water and leave it to cool in your fridge - This way you don't have to run the tap for ages just to get a cold drink.
  7. Rather than washing your car with a running hosepipe, try using a bucket and sponge instead - Fill the bucket with water from the water butt. Just 30 minutes with a hosepipe will use more water than the average family uses in a day. Using a bucket will give your car a much more precise wash. I know, you need to give it more elbow grease but there you go, its good for you.
  8. About a quarter of all clean, drinkable water we use in our homes is flushed down the toilet - If you're in the market for a new loo, consider buying a water efficient toilet or one with a dual flush. If your loo is still as good as new, put a hippo or other displacement device into the cistern to save some water. Give your water company a ring; they can give you one of these devices for free.
  9. By washing your fruits and veg in a bowl rather than under a running tap, you could cut down on water waste effortlessly - As an added bonus, you can use the leftover water to feed your houseplants.
  10. By using a shower timer - you cut the amount of time you spend in the shower. Try taking shorter showers to reduce the amount of water you use.

3 comments:

Mark said...

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Cheers mark

Anonymous said...

Great blog - even better lifestyle.

Keep going!

Heather Gorringe said...

Thank you Anne for the link. The droughtbuster is a corker - not sure my garden needs too much more water just at the moment - but no doubt there will be a scorcher soon which will dry the whole thing up!