Water heating is the biggest electricity expense for the average household – the more hot water you use, the more money you pay. Not only is it important to save electricity and money – it’s also a very good idea to save water. South Africa is a semi-arid country with an average national rainfall of 450mm – well below the international average of 860mm. This makes water a scarce and precious resource, so we should all use water conservatively.
Instead of allowing the water to run when you wash your face or shave, fill the basin with the right amount of water you need and, when brushing your teeth, use a cup filled with water for rinsing your mouth. Reduce the amount of water your household consumes by simply switching from bathing to showering. Leaving taps to drip is also extremely wasteful. Remember to turn off your taps tightly after using them and to fix any leaky faucets.
You can save significantly on energy and water by using an energy and water-saving showerhead. It’s a very effective way of cutting back on your hot water consumption and electricity usage in your home. An energy and water saving shower head typically has a flow rate of less than 10 litres per minute, compared with a conventional showerhead that has a flow rate of 15 litres per minute. A household that takes an average of 3 x 7-minute showers a day can save up to 38 000 litres of water a year. In money terms this means a saving of R 1 100 a year.