Best Water Saving Tips for Your Home and Garden
Australia is a very dry country. Have you ever woken up at 4 am after eating a salty meal the night before and your mouth is so dry that you can’t swallow? That’s roughly how dry Australia is. In fact, this is the single driest inhabited continent on Earth. Yet, when you wake up there is always clean, cool water in the tap to ease your parched suffering. That is something too many of us take for granted.
Despite frequent droughts, Australians remain some of the biggest consumers of water per capita in the world. This isn’t sustainable in the long term, so we need to all do our bit to save water.
Here are some tips on simple ways you can cut back on water use in your home and around the garden.
Water Saving Tips around the House
Taps and Showers
Even just gradual drips from your taps can waste up to 20,000 litres each year, so make sure you get any leaking taps fixed. Water-saving shower heads and tap aerators can also make a massive difference, cutting the amount of water used by more than 50% – this is especially good if you also limit your showers to around four minutes.
If there is a decent amount of rainfall in your area, installing a water tank can reduce the amount of council water you need to use. This can save you money as well as make your home more water-efficient. Another good tip is to have a bottle of tap water in the fridge during summer. Running the tap long enough for the water to turn cold is very wasteful.
If your house has an older toilet without water-saving features, consider hiring a plumber to replace it with a newer model. If that’s too expensive, you can eco-hack your toilet by adding a brick or some small stones to the cistern – this will effectively decrease the volume of water used with each flush.
Don’t Wash in Bits and Pieces
Only use your dishwasher and washing machine with full loads to optimise water usage, or change the settings to suit the load.
Check for Hidden Leaks
Much of your plumbing is hidden from view. This means there can be leaks, big or small, that you don’t know are there. Book regular maintenance plumbing and inspections to ensure hidden leaks are caught and fixed before they waste too much water.
Being Water-Wise in the Garden
Find Plant Species Suited to a Dry Country
If you haven’t planted your garden yet, or want to revamp it, plant a garden that naturally uses less water. Focusing as much as possible on native species will ensure you have plants that require less water since they evolved in dry Aussie conditions.
Don’t Over-Water Your Lawn or Garden
If you have a lawn, don’t over-water it. Watering your garden less will actually encourage it to grow deeper roots, making it healthier in the long term and increasing your lawn’s ability to access water underground. Keep your grass a little longer in the summer, as well. The shade from the taller grass will reduce evaporation.
Research the plants in your garden, as well. Don’t water plants more than you need to. Another good gardening tip is to push aside any mulch and test the soil with your finger – if it’s moist under the surface you don’t really need to water.
Follow Water Restrictions
Many parts of Australia have restrictions on watering your garden – only water on your allocated days and times. Contact your water supplier for more details.
There’s an App for That
You’ll be unsurprised to learn there is a range of water-saving apps available for iPhone and Android. These apps can help you track your water usage, estimate wastage from drips in your home, and get a better understanding of how much water is actually available in your city, your state, or nation-wide.
Get in Touch
For help getting your home water-smart, get in touch with G.F. James Plumbing today on 02 9649 1099 or enquire online.