Water Wednesday: 4 ways we waste water in South Africa

The average South African household tends to use about 250 litres of water a day. That amounts to 7 500 litres a month, far more than the free water allowance households receive every month from their respective municipalities.

The water used for toilets, cleaning, laundry, bathing and other household needs often accumulates to surpass the water allowance per household. This is also why water becomes a bigger expense than people anticipate.

Knowing which items around your home are the biggest water guzzlers is the first step to cutting down water usage:

Leaky toilets / leaky taps

A toiler in an average household around South Africa uses up to 29 percent of the water. When the toilets are leaking, the amount of water used increases. Couple that with leaky taps and you have a huge water wastage problem. It is important to attend to leaky taps and toilets as they occur to avoid wasting water.

Lawn Sprinklers

Lawn sprinklers are big water guzzlers. Water evaporates faster during the heat of the day. Waterwise advises people to water the gardens in the early mornings and early evenings. High-pressure sprinklers damage young plants and wastewater.

Swimming Pools

Swimming pools in times of drought waste up to an average of 500 litres of backwash water per week on cleaning the filtration system. People who have swimming pools are advised to recycle and re-use the same water, repair swimming pool leaks and use a pool cover to reduce evaporation of water.

Car washing

Using a hose to wash your car is a sure way of increasing your water usage. It is advisable to use a bucket when washing your car. If you have to rinse your car with a hose, make sure you have a nozzle that controls the amount of water you use for the rinse. You may also recycle your bath water to wash your car.


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