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Be water savvy

Be water savvy

As dam levels across the country continue to drop due to the devastating drought conditions affecting most parts of South Africa, it is vital for all citizens to play a part in ensuring responsible water usage and conservation.

In this article, we share with you some water-saving measures that you can implement around your home, as well as water awareness information to help you and your family to be more water savvy this holiday season.


Get a leak check up

  • Inspect your faucets, toilets and pipes for money-wasting leaks and drips. A small drip from a worn tap washer can waste 40 litres of water per day. Larger leaks can waste hundreds of litres a month.
  • Use your water meter to check for hidden water leaks and investigate any peak in consumption. Read the house water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter does not read exactly the same, there is a leak. Report all leaks immediately to the municipality.
  • Put a little food colouring in your toilet tank. If, without flushing, the colour begins to appear in the bowl within 30 minutes, you have a leak that should be repaired immediately. Most replacement parts are inexpensive and easy to install.

Do not use the toilet as an ashtray or wastebasket

Every time you flush a cigarette butt, facial tissue or other small bit of trash, five to seven litres of water is wasted.

Install water-saving showerheads

  • Inexpensive water-saving, low-flow showerheads or restrictors are easy for the homeowner to install.
  • Long, hot showers can use 10 to 15 litres every unneeded minute. Limit your showers to the time it takes to soap up, wash down and rinse off.

Turn off the water after you wet your toothbrush

There is no need to keep the water running while brushing your teeth. Just wet your brush and fill a glass for mouth rinsing.

Rinse your razor for shaving in the sink

Fill the sink with a few centimetres of warm water. This will rinse your razor just as well as running water with far less waste of water.

Use your dishwasher and clothes washer for full loads only

  • Automatic dishwashers and clothes washers should be fully loaded for optimum water conservation.
  • Most makers of dishwashing soap recommend not pre-rinsing dishes, which is a big water savings.
  • With clothes washers, avoid the permanent press cycle, which uses an added 20 litres for the extra rinse. For partial loads, adjust water levels to match the size of the load.

When washing dishes by hand, do not leave the water running for rinsing

If you have a double-basin, fill one with soapy water and one with rinse water. If you have a single-basin sink, gather washed dishes in a dish rack and rinse them with a spray device.

Do not let the taps run while you clean vegetables

Just rinse them in a stoppered sink or a pan of clean water.

Keep a bottle of drinking water in the fridge

Running tap water to cool it off for drinking water is wasteful. Store drinking water in the fridge in a safe drinking bottle.