A Break Down of the
Savings you can enjoy
In your household!
Water saving advice: We will use a typical middle class family of 4, Dad, Mom and 2 kids in a 3 bedroom house on a 600m2 stand; we will treat the pool separately and presume no borehole or well point. This family will conservatively use 200litres per day each or 800l per day = 24 000l (KL) per month, excluding the garden. Research would indicate that 54% of the water usage would be in the house and 46% in the garden.The biggest savings will be had in the toilet(37% of household usage), bath/shower(32%) and then laundry (17%) and kitchen(14%).
Some savings ideas:
Toilets: Some modern toilet cisterns flush 9 litres with every use; older models can be as high as 13 litres, this amount of water is definitely not required to clear the toilet bowl every time. This is a large amount of clean water wastage. More modern cisterns flush 6 litres. If you don’t have a dual flush system try to only flush halfway for urine; some toilet cisterns can be retrofitted with dual-
Make sure your toilet doesn’t leak: pour some dark food colouring in the cistern and leave for a few hours; if the toilet bowl and or floor change colour you have a leak. A small drip can be as much as 25kl a year -
Multi flush (interruptible flush): This is a simple system that lets you control the flush volume. As soon as you let go of the toilet handle, it will stop flushing. This can save you more than 50% of flushing volume. An existing toilet can be retrofitted with a multi-
An old piece of advice from Bulawayo: “If it’s yellow let it mellow; if it’s brown flush it down”; Spit your toothpaste into the toilet bowl, helps freshen and disinfect. Try placing a litre bottle of water or a brick in the cistern to use less water when flushing; flat bottles like the Old Brown sherry 1 litre bottle work well.
Urinals: Waterless urinals are available; these use no water, no ice, no chemicals and have no odour; very good for high traffic areas like schools, malls, offices and restaurants.
Showers: Low flow shower heads use 6 litres per minute whereas standard heads use between 10 and 20 litres per minute; keep in mind that at least half of this is hot water, so you save on electricity as well. Your shower experience will be no different. Keep a bucket handy when you turn the hot tap on; catch the cold water that comes out and use to flush the toilet or on your plants. Once the water is warm lather your hair, soap and sponge; then turn water off, wash, turn on and rinse off. Consider capturing some of your shower water with a bucket and using as above. The jury is out on the effectiveness of sharing a shower; possibly too much fiddling?
Baths: Best avoided if possible; an average bath will use 80 litres. Don’t run the water out; it can be used for: flushing toilets, in the garden, for washing cars. It may start to smell after the 2nd day; so use quickly. Even better share the bath.
Shaving: Few men appreciate a dry or cold shave. Catch the cold water that runs out of the hot tap in a bucket – re-
Tap Aerators: Save up to 35% of the water coming out of your taps by fitting aerators; they typically reduce water flow from around 12 litres per minute to around 8 litres pm. Aerators also help reduce the noise and splashing from taps. If you buy an aerator for R 200 it will pay back in 11 months, if you estimate 3 uses a day for 2 minutes each and a water cost of around R25 per kl and usage between 10 and 20kl per month.
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Have a good holiday season and remember to keep conserving water and electricity. Herewith some of our Water Saving Tips:
Make sure they close and are closed properly; a leaking tap can waste 30litres a day or nearly 11 000 litres per year. Fitting Aerators will reduce the amount of water used by up to 40%.
Best avoided if possible; an average bath will use 80 litres. Don’t run the water out; it can be used for flushing toilets, in the garden, for washing cars. Even better share the bath.
Low flow shower heads use 6 litres per minute whereas standard heads use between 10 and 20 litres per minute; keep in mind that at least half of this is hot water, so you save on electricity as well. Your shower experience will be no different. Keep a bucket handy when you turn the hot tap on; catch the cold water that comes out and use to flush the toilet or on your plants. Consider capturing some of your shower water with a bucket and using as above. Once the water is warm lather your hair, then turn water off, soap and sponge, turn on and rinse off. Sharing a shower will probably not save any water..........
What has this to do with water saving? Simple – ever turned a tap on and waited for hot or cold water while the water drains down the pipe? Every time you do this it’s 5 to 10 litres wasted. Rather keep a bucket to hand and use this water to flush or water the garden; or insulate your pipes and mostly eliminate the problem. Pipe insulation is cheap and easy to install.
Make sure that it is A class energy efficient; this will also be more efficient with water. Only run when full. Don’t rinse dishes; rather just scrape them or get the dog to pre-
Dish washing (Hand)
Install aerators and flow-
When cleaning pour this nutrient rich water onto your garden or pot plants.
Make sure that it is “A” class energy efficient; these units use 18 litres per load vs. 65 for older machines. Always wash with a full load. Front loaders use less water than do top loaders. Cut back on washing your towels and linen; use three or more towels at a time – if you use one per day you are only using them very 3rd day and will need to wash them less often.
Few men appreciate a dry or cold shave. Catch the cold water that runs out of the hot tap in a bucket – re-
If you don’t have a dual flush system try to only flush hallway for urine; some toilet cisterns can be retrofitted with dual-
Rain water harvesting
This involves the capture of rain in tanks and then re-
We have altered the gutters system on homes to drain into the pool. This means that the pool, in normal years, only needs to be topped up occasionally from mid-
There are 2 types of Grey water – Grey and Black. Black water being from toilets and Grey from all other sources. Black is best left to go through the sewerage system; although there are systems to reuse black water. Grey water systems generally do not store the water; they tend to use the water immediately on the garden. It is recommended that Dishwasher water is not put through these systems. Hair conditioner can clog the system if heavily used. For more an article on this…Click Here.
During summer pools can lose up to 2 000 litres of water per day through evaporation. Pool covers are relatively easy to purchase and install; or you can make one from bubble wrap, PVC weld and a few poles. These are good investments in that they save water, keep debris out and your pool will use fewer chemicals. Consider a backwash recycling system; backwashing can use up to 1 000ltr’s per backwash/rinse cycle. Recycling systems capture the water in a tank and feed back into the pool. If you would like more info, Click Here for our pool section.
Learn about water-
Boreholes & well points
A well point is a pipe with a filtered end installed into a porous soil structure. The water is distributed by means of a surface mounted pump. A borehole is a shaft drilled to depths exceeding 20 metres with a large diameter casing allowing for the installation of a submersible pump to distribute the water. Borehole water can be used in the garden and toilets; if you have the right quality you can use in showers, washing machines and pools. Well point is best used in garden and toilets. By using an energy efficient pump the running costs will be about 80c per hour. Generally the sandier, flatter and low lying areas of the Cape are where well points can be installed. Boreholes are usually installed on rockier or higher lying ground. Certain municipalities require boreholes and well points to be registered. Have your water tested regularly.
For more info on Boreholes & Well-
Irrigation systems if properly installed and with water efficient nozzles are more effective than hand held hoses or sprinklers attached to hoses. Drip feed systems are the most efficient; generally the lower to the ground the better the efficiency, less water is wasted to evaporation. Most systems come with a rain sensor or rain delay feature so that if it rains you can save a day’s water at the press of a button. Adjust the settings as the days get cooler – watch for dew from March, reduce the time settings accordingly. Set your sprinklers to go off before 6am and after 6pm to prevent losses to evaporation. Check the spray patterns weekly in summer as the growth of foliage can divert water sprays and waste water. Adjust sprinklers to water plants and not the pavement.
Probably the biggest user of water in summer. If you must have a lawn consider planting drought resistant types; your local nursery can help. Rather water deeply every 2nd day than every day; 10 minutes every 2nd day is more effective than 6 minutes daily. Keep lawn shapes round or square in accordance with the spray patterns on your irrigation systems. Remove lawn and replace with other ground covers such as bark, stone, decorative paving, flower beds or water wise plants. Seriously consider installing artificial grass; modern types come in stem lengths up to 40mm. They require no watering, no fertiliser, no cutting, no weeding; they produce no mud or dust. You can start with one area and expand as your budget allows.
Use a broom and or mop to clean patios and driveways not the hosepipe.
For a more detailed description of the above tips please check our previous tips on our fb page Green Star Technologies.
If you found this post interesting please share. If you have more or better tips please share with us.
For more tips on water and energy saving please check our Facebook page “Green Star Tech”. Should you be interested in any of these technologies please contact us on email@example.com .
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