Using Water Wisely

Using water wisely has many benefits, not only for the environment but also by lowering energy bills.

Despite what you may think, water is a finite and precious resource.  Only about 1% of all the water on the earth can be used by people.  Every day we each use about 150 litres of clean water.  As consumers we need to be aware of how our choices have an impact now and in the future.  It is important that we try to use our water wisely and reduce the amount we waste.

Water efficiency at home:

Around a quarter of a household’s energy bill comes from using hot water.  So by making simple changes you could make a big difference - to your pocket and to the environment. Here are some easy ways to save water and energy:

  1. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth – a running tap can waste over six litres per minute;
  2. Fix dripping taps – they can waste up to 30 litres of water a day;
  3. When putting the kettle on only boil the amount of water you need (although remember to cover the element if you are using an electric kettle);
  4. Fully load your dishwasher or washing machine before putting it on;
  5. Fill a jug with tap water and leave it to cool in your fridge. This way you don't have to run the tap for ages just to get a cold drink;
  6. Use a water butt to collect rain water to water the garden;
  7. Older toilet cisterns can use as much as 13 litres of water per flush.  Installing a Cistern Displacement Device that takes up space in your cistern; e.g. Hippo bags or Save a Flush bags can reduce this by as much as a third.  Hippo bags are free of charge from NI Water's Education Department.  (Please note: dual flush, slim line cisterns and cisterns using less than six litres of water will not require a device); and
  8. Make sure pipes are insulated against frost.  Burst pipes can cause serious damage and waste large quantities of water.

For further information on water saving initiatives in the home visit Waterwise -

Water Efficiency for Business and Farms:

We have produced guides "Every Drop Counts - Business" and "Every Drop Counts - Agricultural" to help businesses and farms improve their water efficiency, get the best service and save money on their bills.

For further water saving tips for businesses and farms click here.