Water wise tips

There are many simple things you can do around your home and garden to use water efficiently.

Do you know how much water a water efficient household should be using? Our water efficiency targets can help you find out how much water you should aim to use.

Fix leaks

  • Get to know your water meter. If the numbers on it are turning while no water is being used in your home, you could have a leak.
  • Check for leaking taps. Fixing a leaking tap is an easy way to use less water. One leaking tap can waste up to 2,000 litres a month. Replace washers as soon as taps begin to leak.
  • Most leaks get worse over time, so maintenance and quick repairs are key to reducing the cost of leaks.
  • Check for, and repair any, leaking pipes. Constant damp patches in the garden, particularly during dry periods could indicate a hidden underground leak.
  • Not all plumbers are equipped to find hidden leaks. If you know you have a leak but can't find it, confirm the plumber has specialist leak finding equipment.

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-and-a-half starswhen 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

Man washing vegetables in the sink

Wash your vegetables in a half filled sink rather than under a running tap.

  • 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 it 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.

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 water needs together.
  • Mulch your gardens to reduce moisture loss and weeds. Lawn clippings are a great, free mulch.
  • 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.

Look after your pool

  • Keep your pool covered when not in use. 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

Children washing car on grass

Wash your car on the lawn instead of the driveway.

  • 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, rake, outdoor blower or vacuum. 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? Our Garden & pool section has more. Or use our plant selector to choose the right plants for your garden.

Man fixing kitchen tap

Always fix leaking taps as soon as possible.