Looking at past articles about becoming a prepper or a backdoor survivalist seemed a little extreme a few years ago. We have had many years of abundance, but with load-shedding, water-shedding and COVID-1,9 the world we know has changed. This is especially true if you are living in a drought-stricken area in South Africa.
Today I realised that most of those survival basics are now considered normal, in fact, we practice them daily without really thinking about them. But in case you've missed the prepper articles, here are the recommended ways to save water at home.
About 80% of your household water is used in the bathroom. Most of this water is wasted.
Check for leaks - not every leak is obvious but taking care of the main leaks is a good place to start. Check you geyser to make sure that it is not losing water through leeks or the overflow outlet.
Don't keep the taps running - litres of water are wasted just through allowing the water to run while we wash hands or brush teeth.
Install a greywater system -this will make sure that your wash water is not wasted, but rather repurposed for the garden. If you don't have a greywater system yet a bucket in the shower is better than nothing.
Only flush when necessary - not every visit to the toilet needs a flush. Blowing a nose, for example, the waste paper does not have to be flushed down the toilet. This goes for other waste like floss, cotton balls, earbuds, etc.
Update your loo - old fashioned toilets were made when freshwater was considered an infinite resource. Today we have water-smart toilets that use greywater to flush and can complete a flush using much less water. If you do have an old toilet you can place a filled soda bottle in the tank. Test the new reduced flush to ensure that it can do the job because double flushing wastes more water.
Clean with less water - for showering you can install water-saving showerheads and spend less time in the shower. For bathing use bubble bath in a small amount of water as this will get you clean and have the illusion of bathing in deeper water.
The kitchen is where most of the rest of your household water is wasted.
Put a bowl in the sink - washing veggies under running water is very wasteful. Capture the water in a bowl and use it to water your garden.
Get a dishwasher - a timesaver and also a water saver. A dishwasher uses less water to clean than handwashing dishes.
Aerate your water - install water-saving taps to save on water in the kitchen.
Check for leaks - external taps are often overlooked and can drip for days before they are discovered. Look for evidence of cracked or broken pipes, irrigation systems, etc. Look up to see if any overflow pipes are constantly dripping.
Drench your plants - making sure you really water your plants infrequently saves more water than water lightly frequently.
Greywater is a timesaver - your greywater system can be set to automatically irrigate your garden.