How to be Waterwise

Water is essential for all life and is the most abundant substance on Earth, yet water scarcity is one of the biggest issues facing us today. Australia is the world’s driest inhabited continent and 2019 was the hottest and driest year on record

Dripping tap info graphic

You can be part of the solution by looking at your water usage and exploring ways that you can be Waterwise and live Sustainably.

There are many ways to be waterwise.

In the home

  • Take shorter showers.
  • Use the half flush button on your toilet instead of the full flush button.
  • Turn taps off when brushing teeth
  • Check for dripping taps
  • Only run the dishwasher or washing machine went it is full
  • Don’t put rubbish or chemicals down the drain.
  • Don’t turn the tap on too hard while washing your hands and turn off it properly.
  • Use a broom instead of a hose to clean paths and driveways.
World Water Day infographic illustration with information about safe clean waters help.
World Water Day Infographic copyright @ Cienpies Design

In the garden

  • Water the garden early in the morning or in the evening because less water evaporates when it is cooler.
  • Plant Australian plants that are native to your area and mulch your garden.
  • Find alternatives to fertilisers and pesticides that may contain harmful chemicals.
  • Wash the car on the lawn.
  • Reuse your bath water for plants
  • Check for dripping taps
  • Collect rain water to use in the garden

School Water Audit

Become aware of how you are using water at your school by conducting a Water Audit. This is a fun way for your students to learn about how water is used in the Urban Water Cycle.

Step 1: Find out how much water your school uses

Step 2: Where does your school use Water

Step 3: How can your school save water

Water audit flow chart
School Water Audit © Water Corporation 2018

Water Usage Calculator

Try out the Hunter Water: Water Usage Calculator to calculate how much water you use each year. The Water Use table lists how many litres of water are used for common household activities each day. You can also use this to calculate how much water you use each day and help you find areas to reduce consumption and become Waterwise.

Toilet (Single flush cistern) 
Toilet (Duel Flush)  
11 litres
3 litres for a half flush
6 litres for a full flush
Bath  100 litres
Shower (standard shower head)
Shower (low flow shower head)
20 litres/minute
10 litres/minute
Dishwasher load  12 litres
Washing machine load  90 litres
Brushing teeth with tap running  5 litres/minute
Drinking, cooking, cleaning 10 litres person/day
Hand basin per use  5 litres
Garden sprinkler   15 litres/minute
Garden dripper per hour  15 litres/minute
Car Washing with hose  15 litres/minute
Hosing driveway  15 litres/minute
A dripping tap can waste up to 200 litres of water/day
Leaking or running toilet     500 litres of water/day

Remember to check on your local water restrictions

Australian Environmental Education logo with dragonfly