select
|

Be wise with water

With summer in full swing, these persistent hot days are a constant reminder of the concerning water levels throughout the country. Water shortages have become a burning issue with many regions throughout South Africa currently experiencing water restrictions, to ensure that the precious resource is sustained.

“Water is a vital commodity that we require in order to survive. Without water the environment we live in could not survive, so it is imperative that the necessary precautions are taken to ensure that this essential resource is not used carelessly,” says Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa.

He notes that there are several ways that homeowners or tenants can save water in and around the home, which will bring down monthly water bills and more importantly, reduce water usage. Goslett provides a few tips that will assist people in lessening their impact on the national water crisis:

Inside the home:

Taps

It is important to make sure that once a tap has been used it is closed properly. While this seems like a relatively small thing to do, a tap dripping at one drip per second will waste as much as thirty litres of water in one day.  This equates to around 10 000 litres of water wasted over a period on a year, simply from one single dripping tap.

Ensure that tap washers are replaced regularly and fit aerators to restrict and spread the flow. An aerator will reduce water usage creating a no-splashing stream and often delivering a mixture of water and air. Remember to turn off the tap when brushing teeth. This will save around twenty litres of water per month. A mug of water can be used to rinse the toothbrush after use.

Bathroom

Showering will use far less water than bathing, provided that the shower is less than 5 minutes long. If there is only the option of taking a bath, the bath should be as shallow as possible and water reused to water the garden.

Installing a water-saving shower head will also aid in reducing water usage. Ideally when showering the water should not be at full force and it should be turned off when soaping or shaving. When opting to shave at the basin, it is best to plug the basin rather than rinsing the razor with running water. This will save approximately 45 litres of water a month.

Much like a leaking tap, a leaking toilet can waste vast amounts of water. Installing a water-saving toilet is an option, but for those who don’t wish to spend money on the outlay, adding a brick or sealed container of sand to the cistern will reduce the amount of water used during each flush. A few drops of food colouring in the cistern will help to determine if any water is leaking from the toilet. If the colour seeps into the bowl, the system is leaking and should be fixed without delay. 

Kitchen

If possible only use washing machines and dishwashers when they are fully loaded to avoid unnecessary water usage. Rather than rinsing dishes under running water, opt to rinse items in a basin of water and then reuse the water in the garden. When waiting for dishwater to heat up, run the tap into bottles to use as drinking water. By keeping bottles of drinking water in the fridge there is no need to let lukewarm water be wasted when waiting for the tap water to cool.

Outside the home:


Homeowners in South Africa consume an estimated 30% to 50% of water on watering and maintaining their gardens, so it seems that this is the most significant area for water to be saved. While an attractive, established garden can add considerable value to a property, a water-wise garden that takes less water to maintain but is still beautiful makes sense from both an environmental and financial view point.

Choose the right plants

As a general rule, only indigenous plants should be used as they consume very little water and require minimal maintenance.  Certain bedding plants can drink a lot of water, however by adding mulching to the bed and water retention granules to the soil, the need for water can be substantially reduced. It is best to water the garden either before 9am in the morning or after 4pm in the afternoon – even later on really hot days. In addition, no watering should take place within 24 hours of rainfall as it should provide adequate saturation.

Reduce lawn areas

Lawns guzzle water, so assess how much is really necessary. Consider adding hardscaping features such as a paved or cobblestone footpath, which will reduce watering areas as well as add to the aesthetic appeal and overall feel of the garden. 

“With soaring temperatures and the lack of water currently being experienced, becoming water-wise is essential. It is not just about saving an important resource, but also about sustainability and of course saving money with today’s higher cost of living,” Goslett concludes. 


  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
  
2000
Characters remaining


    Latest Property News
    • 24 Nov 2017
      Demand for secure estate living in Hout Bay has risen sharply in recent years, precipitating a spike in development with estate homes now accounting for 20.24% of the property landscape with the launch of an exclusive new gated development on 26 November adding 20 more units to the existing 1250 estate homes.
    • 24 Nov 2017
      There are some things that money can’t buy – spectacular views from Mouille Point to the V&A Waterfront and a trendy and lively neighbourhood that encapsulates the very best of the Cape Town lifestyle.
    • 24 Nov 2017
      Tshwane’s four-bedroom Mayoral mansion, nestled among ambassadorial residences in the upmarket suburb of Muckleneuk, fetched R5.1 million after spirited bidding at High Street Auctions’ final sale of the year.
    • 23 Nov 2017
      Reserve Bank Governor, Lesetja Kganyago, said that the Monetary Policy Committee had once again decided to let the interest rates remain unchanged with the repo rate at 6.75%, and the prime lending rate at 10.25%.
    • 23 Nov 2017
      As the holiday season approaches, most of us are counting the days until that year-end bonus hits our account. There’s nothing quite like a little bank balance booster to get us in the holiday spirit.
    • 23 Nov 2017
      The Adelphi Centre (now entitled “ARTEM") in Sea Point, Cape Town, is being extensively renovated, and once complete will offer an ultra-luxurious galleria style shopping centre unlike any other seen on the Atlantic Seaboard or in Cape Town.
    • 23 Nov 2017
      If you are looking to sell your home in today’s real estate market, there are certain things that you need to include both inside and outside your house. Today’s generation of home buyers is looking toward a more eco-friendly, energy and water conscious home, and if your house stands out then you are more likely to be able to sell it.
    • 22 Nov 2017
      Most people know of the Community Schemes Ombud Service (CSOS) and that levies must to paid to fund its operations. In this article the experts at Paddocks will address some of the issues that are causing confusion.
        
    X
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Name  
    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    select
    X
    Share this Page

       
    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    About
    Connect with us
    FEEDBACK