After a few disastrous weeks of moorland fires, little rain and potentially a few sun burns, water companies are asking us to be more careful with our water usage. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as we all know how essential water is to our everyday life and being more responsible with our water- just like we are with our money- can only set us up for good things in the future!
Only 1% of the world’s water is actually suitable for human consumption. On average, people in the UK use a whopping 150 litres of water per person per day of this precious liquid and making some modifications can help us all to be a little more mindful about our water usage.
Use a water butt for your garden.
The mighty water butt is a beautiful invention to help us all catch the rain that falls (when it does fall) and store it for times when it’s falling a little less. Like saving money in times of wealth can help us prepare for emergencies, likewise using a water butt can help us to store water for dryer times. The water in a butt is NOT for drinking however, this water is for feeding your plants or animals. An added benefit of using a water butt is that the water isn’t Chlorinated and so the wildlife and ecosystem in your garden aren’t at all affected by it’s use.
Put a brick in your toilet
Literally if you really want but there are also some higher or lower tech ways of saving water with every flush. Your toilet cistern holds around 3 litres of water that it uses to flush away your byproducts every time you visit the old WC. This adds up tremendously and any water you used your are charged both for taking the water into your household in your water charge and also for treating the waste in your sewer bill. For every litre that you don’t spend flushing your toilet you save in both your water and sewer bill! Fill up a sandwich bag, an old pop bottle or tupperware box with water and place it at the bottom of your cistern being careful not to impede the mechanics within. The container will then take up space in your cistern and reduce how much water you use with every flush.
Use a washing up bowl
Using a washing up bowl can save 10 litres of water every time you wash the dishes, re-use the rinse water to wash smaller items like dishes and cutlery. Just be sure to wash the dirtiest thing last.
Your washing machine that is. Only wash your clothes on a full load to save both water and energy each time! The washing machine has a setting for how much water it will use with each cycle and if you wash on half full then you’re increasing the amount of water per item used. Wash on a lower time setting for basic day-to-day use of clothing.
Try to shower instead of taking baths, a bath will use upwards of 80L of water with each use while a shower lasting 4 minutes will take on average 32L of water. Get everything you need to do done quickly and efficiently. I shampoo my hair first and then as my conditioner sets in, I’ll wash my body and face before rinsing everything off. You can even buy handy 4 minute shower timers. Save water, money and time by making your morning routine more efficient!
Glass under the tap
Did you know that it can take 10 litres of water to fill one pint glass for a nice cold refreshing glass? Doesn’t add up right? This happens when we leave the tap running too long waiting for the water to run cold. Instead try filling a jug with water and leaving it in the fridge at all times. Remember to switch it out regularly so that it doesn’t get old. The Chlorine will be gone within 12 hours of being in the fridge and so it’s important not to leave the water there for longer than 48 hours.
Similarly with brushing your teeth- Don’t leave the tap running as you do. This can waste 24 litres of water a day. Literally flushing money down the drain. Turn the tap on when you need it and turn it off when you don’t.
Wash your car with a bucket
Using your hosepipe to wash your car can cost upwards of 170L per 10 minutes used! More than one person uses per day or in an hour, more than a family of four use in a week. If you need to wash your car for functionality then grab a bucket and sponge which will use around 5 litres of water instead. No need to make it glitter this summer, we’re all feeling the pinch and no one really cares what your car looks like. If you do, you can still make your car gleam enough to see your own pores reflected with a few buckets full rather than a hosepipe.
Have a water fight rather than a paddle.
Paddling pools can take up to 200L to fill dependant on size and that water needs to be maintained regularly. Rather than sitting in a pool why not grab some water guns and take to the streets? A water gun takes around 1L of water and some smaller pistols can take even less. Wear an old white t shirt and add a little food colouring to the water to see who’s had the most hits in a game. It’s more fun and you’ll get some exercise at the same time.
We all could be a little more aware of the impact we have when living our day to day lives. Water is essential for drinking and being healthy, it’s not essential for taking long baths and