5 Aug 2014

3 top water saving tips for brisbane homes

Lifestyle | New Homes | Renovations | Tips and Advice

Water savingAustralia is naturally a very dry country. In fact, Australia is apparently the driest continent in the world. And whilst Brisbane itself can receive a lot of rain – at times too much – it is also prone to drought and it is predicted that we are about to enter into another prolonged period of below average rainfall. Because of the previous droughts, Brisbane water prices are quite high so it pays to consider water saving techniques wherever we can. So with that in mind, let me share with you 3 top tips to help Brisbane homeowners save water.

1. Harvesting rainwater

We pay for it, but often there is plenty of the stuff falling from the sky. And whilst you may initially need to invest in ways to capture it, once you do you can capture as much as you like for nothing.

The obvious way to harvest rainwater is through rainwater tanks and now is a great time to buy them. If as predicted another drought starts up you can expect the price of tanks to rise, so getting additional rainwater tanks now makes a lot of sense.

Rainwater tanks come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and appearances. With careful planning and clever design, they can be very inconspicuous.

Once the water is in your tanks there are now a variety of things you can do with it that will keep your water bills down. You can use it:

  • For drinking – but you really should have it tested for portability first.
  • In your hot water service. This can actually increase the life of your hot water system in some places as the rainwater is ‘softer’ than town water.
  • For flushing toilets.
  • In your washing machine. You may even find that you use less detergent and have even cleaner, brighter clothes.
  • Washing cars and boats.
  • In your garden which is probably the most common use.

2. Reduce water consumption

A really obvious way to keep water bills down is to reduce consumption. Instead, your home should be ‘water wise’ with a variety of water saving features being employed.

For example, you could have hot water circulators fitted. These are small, inexpensive, low voltage pumps that circulate hot water through your pipes so that you have instant hot water when you turn on the tap, rather than needing to leave the tap running while you wait for the cooler water to clear from the pipes. Other water saving features include:

There are also steps you can take to save water yourself, rather than just relying on fixtures and fittings. For example, you could have a plumber come around and check your system for leaks and drips and have these repaired. Taking shorter showers is another way, as is making sure you only wash when you have full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher.

Also, take a look at your yard. Do you have low consumption plants in a well-mulched garden bed, or do you have a water-thirsty lawn? Both can look green and great in the years where we get plenty of rain, but only one will still look great during a drought.

3. Recycle water

Whilst recycled water systems cost a bit to install initially, the rising cost of water makes them a worthwhile consideration for many Brisbane properties.

There are two main types of wastewater captures which are Grey Water – water from your laundry and bathroom and Black Water – which is water from your toilet or kitchen sink.

Recycled water is typically used in yards, but it can also potentially be used for flushing toilets as well.

There are a number of ways in which the water can be treated from dual tank treatment systems to reed beds which give a more natural treatment alternative.

Water saving

So as you can see there are many ways to lower your water bills in Brisbane. If you are considering building a new home or renovating your current residence, we can help you explore the possibilities for your home through our design process.

Read more about our Eco Housing Design.

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