As scorching summer temperatures continue, water companies have issued warnings to consumers amid fears the UK is heading for a drought.
Some water companies have taken the step of introducing hosepipe bans while others are encouraging consumers to be more mindful of their water usage.
With the cost-of-living crisis set to worsen, learning how to save water will not only protect vital reservoir resources, it can also help save money on household bills.
Here are six clever ways to cut back on water usage around the house:
– Do less laundry
Instead of chucking clothes into the laundry basket after one wear, consider whether they really need washing. Could airing an item in a breezy spot, a quick press with the iron or a spritz of deodorising spray be enough to refresh it?
When you are washing clothes, be sure to wait until you have enough laundry for a full load – so you aren’t constantly running the machine and using up more water.
– Use your dishwasher efficiently
We all know that having a shower generally uses less water than a bath, but did you know that using your dishwasher could actually be more water efficient than washing and rinsing lots of items in the sink?
As with the washing machine, the key is to make sure your dishwasher is full before running it.
– Try a low-flow showerhead
Combine shorter shower times with a more efficient appliance for maximum water saving.
“Low-flow showerheads have become readily available in recent years, with product innovations meaning their performance can match, or out-do, traditional showerheads,” says Yiota Toumba, senior designer at Ideal Standard UK (idealstandard.co.uk).
She claims a low-flow showerhead can help you “reduce water consumption by half – from 60 litres to just 30 litres per five minute shower, that’s up to 10,950 litres per person a year”.
– Reuse cooking water on house plants
“You can use the cooking water left over from boiling vegetables, grains, and eggs to give your houseplants a nourishing feed,” says Hayley Baddiley, global marketing director at Denby Pottery (denbypottery.com) – just make sure to wait until the water has cooled first.
Not only is it more sustainable, doing so allows you to make the most of the vitamins the water has absorbed, she says.
– Better beauty habits
When it comes to beauty routines, you can save water by drenching a flannel and using it to remove cleanser and make-up residue, instead of running the tap to rinse your face – even skincare experts like Caroline Hirons are flannel fans.
Dry shampoo is a hair-refreshing hero and means you can have super-speedy showers instead of spending time lathering and rinsing.
– Flush efficiently
“One area often overlooked when it comes to saving water in the home is your toilet’s flush system,” Ms Toumba said.
“Most modern toilets are fitted with a dual flush system, which many of us aren’t even aware of, and using the ‘half flush’ can result in massive water savings.”
Plus, there is no harm in following the old eco-friendly adage: ‘If it’s yellow, let it mellow, if it’s brown, flush it down’.