Save water

Person drinking water from a glass

There are many simple, practical things you can do to save water.

Where can you save water?

Do you know how much water an efficient household should be using?

Look at our water efficiency targets to find out how much water you can aim to use.

Check for leaking pipes

Check for leaking pipes and repair them as soon as possible. In many homes you can see pipes:

  • near the hot water heater
  • near the washing machine
  • near the dishwasher
  • under flooring
  • above the ceiling.

Check for leaking taps and toilets

  • Fix leaking taps as soon as possible. It's an easy way to use less water. One leaking tap can waste up to 2,000 litres a month.
  • Prevent leaks by not turning taps off too hard and replace washers as soon as taps begin to leak.
  • Find toilet leaks quickly by placing a sheet of dry paper at the back of the bowl. If it remains dry between flushes, there are no leaks.

Use water efficient products

  • Install water efficient taps or make your current taps water efficient by installing flow regulating aerators.
  • Look for a front loading washing machine with at least 4.5 stars when you buy a new washing machine.
  • Choose a dishwasher with a 5-star rating for sparkling dishes and a lower water bill.
  • Install a 3-star rated showerhead and you'll save water and energy by using less hot water.

Choose water efficient behaviours

  • Keep a bottle of water in the fridge for drinking instead of running the tap until the water is cool. 
  • Thaw food in the fridge or microwave instead of under running water.
  • Wait until you have a full load in your dishwasher or washing machine and use the economy mode. This can save you water and energy.
  • Wash fruit and vegies in a half-filled sink instead of running water. 
  • Rinse your razor in the sink. Rinsing your razor under a running tap wastes lots of water.
  • Turn the tap off while you brush your teeth. Simply wet your toothbrush before you begin and use a glass of water to rinse your mouth.

Find out more about saving water in the kitchen & laundry and in the bathroom.

Choose the right plants and soil

  • Use compost to improve your soil. Maybe make your own!
  • Water the base of your plants, not the leaves.
  • Place plants with similar watering needs together.
  • Mulch your gardens to reduce moisture loss and weeds.
  • Plant local native varieties and other water wise plants that attract wildlife and need less maintenance and watering.
  • Try not to cut lawns too short. Cut only the top third off the length, leaving it three centimetres or higher.
  • Water your garden in the early morning or evening to reduce water loss through evaporation.

Get to know your water meter

If the numbers on far right hand side of your meter are turning while there's no water being used in your home, you could have a leak. 

If you're not sure where your water meter is, call us on 13 20 92.

Maintain your pool 

  • Keep your pool covered. Without a cover, more than half the water in your pool can evaporate over a year.
  • Keep the water level of your pool halfway up the skimmer. Overfilling stops the skimmer working efficiently and wastes water.

Maintain your property

  • Wash your car on the lawn and you'll water and fertilise your lawn at the same time. Car shampoos use phosphates similar to many fertilisers.
  • Use a broom or rake. Don't hose paths, patios or driveways. 
  • Check your outdoor taps and pipes for leaks regularly. Just one dripping tap can waste up to 2,000 litres a month.

Want more tips? Visit our Garden & pool section or use our plant selector to choose the right plants for your garden.

Understand your water use

  • Read meters at least daily to make sure you don’t have undetected leaks. One business site cut its water use by over 80% by detecting and fixing a large underground leak.
  • Benchmark your water use so you can see how much water you're using compared to others in your industry. Common benchmarks include litres per square metre (for buildings) or per unit of production (for manufacturers).

Fix leaks

  • Check for leaks in taps, pipes and hoses. One leaking tap can waste more than 2,000 litres a month! To reduce leaks in taps, turn your taps off lightly and replace washers as soon as they begin to leak.
  • Check that urinals and toilets are not leaking or flushing when not in use.

Install water efficient devices

  • Install at least 3 star rated flow restrictors in taps and showers. They're more efficient than ordinary taps and reduce splashing.
  • Replace single flush toilets with efficient dual flush models. They use half as much water as old models. If you can't replace toilets immediately, reduce flush volumes.

Implement water efficient processes

  • Mop floors instead of hosing them. Microfibre mops use less water, create less waste and reduce slip hazards.
  • Use mops, brooms or a bucket to wash and rinse. Don’t use hoses to clean hard surface areas.
  • Encourage staff to rinse their dishes in a plugged sink rather than under a running tap. It's just as easy and effective.
  • Think about installing your own wastewater treatment system to recycle water and cut down on water bills.

Communicate with staff

  • Provide incentives for staff to save water by linking water conservation to staff performance reviews.
  • Ask your staff for water saving ideas - they know how they use water in your business. Follow up on ideas and report back on progress. Simple ideas from staff may save more water than you ever imagined.
  • Include water saving policies and procedures in staff training programs and talk about water conservation plans, opportunities and progress at staff meetings.
  • Communicate water saving ideas using bulletins, newsletters, emails or posters. Encourage people to send water saving ideas via email or suggestion boxes.