Water saving tips

We're upgrading our city's below-ground well heads to help end temporary chlorination. To finish the job, we need everyone to reduce their water use. Your family can play a big part by following these water saving tips.

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Get the family together!

Talk with your family about ways to save water or challenge each other around what they did today to reduce their waste.

Check for leaky taps.

Check all taps on your property for leaks. Even one drip a second can waste over 5,000 litres per year.

Ensure your garden retains the water it needs.

Water before 6am or after 9pm, and only when it's not windy, otherwise water can evaporate before being used by plants.

Target water to plants that really need it.

Use a trigger gun nozzle on a hand-held hose or watering can.

A rainwater tank is a great investment.

A tank ensures you have fresh water available, and can be a key water source for your family in a natural disaster.

Gardens don't need water every day.

Try watering on alternate days: even street numbers on even days, odd street numbers on odd days. A deep soak is better than frequent light watering.

Keep your shower under 5 minutes.

Install a shower timer (or water-efficient shower head) and save up to 3700 litres of water per month!

Make water conservation a fun game for your family.

Set a challenge for everyone to turn off the tap while brushing their teeth.

Use your dishwasher wisely.

Ensure that your dishwasher is full before running a load.

There are alternatives to using running tap water.

Wash fruit and vegetables in a bowl of water, then pour the water onto pot plants.

Washing machines account for up to 20% of water used in most homes.

Use a more water-efficient front loader and ensure you always have a full load.

Every action to conserve water helps.

Reducing laundry by one load can save up to 50 litres of water per week!

Why saving water during summer 2018–19 is important

Most summers, the demand for water in Christchurch can double or even triple.  When this happens, we need to draw water from all of our city's wells to cope with demand.

This year, we want to be able to shut down some of these wells so we can continue our well head upgrade programme.  A key outcome of the programme will be regaining our secure water supply status.

Simply put, the less water you use, the faster we can work, which is our best chance of ending temporary chlorination within our 12-month deadline.

Additionally, when water use is very high, the city may be using water faster than we can pump it and fill the reservoirs. This can lead to supply issues and reduced pressure. Reduced pressure is worrying as this can impact the effectiveness of activities like fire-fighting.

A key way you can conserve water is to check all taps on your property for leaks. Even one drip a second can waste over 5,000 litres per year.

Check out our other top tips for different places in and around your home:

Photo of a hose watering some plants

Gardening

  • Water your garden before 7am or after 9pm.
  • Water your garden with a handheld hose only.
  • Most gardens do well, being watered every other day at most.
  • Water your garden at cooler, less windy times of the day to ensure your plants retain the water they need.
  • Set your lawn mower to leave grass slightly longer. Short grass dries out sooner.  

Bathroom

  • Turn off the tap when cleaning your teeth or shaving – you could save 10 litres of water a minute.
  • Reduce your shower time to three minutes or less.
  • Install water-saving shower heads or flow restrictors.

Kitchen

  • Wait until you have a full load before starting your dishwasher. When possible, use the eco-setting.
  • Rinse dishes in a sink filled with water, rather than under a running tap.

Laundry

  • Wait until you have a full load before starting your washing machine, or use the partial load settings.

Outside

  • Use a broom to sweep your driveway rather than hosing it clean.
  • Wash your car with a bucket of water on the lawn and you'll water your lawn at the same time.