The Great Use Less Water Hunt

MSE_Martin Posts: 8,273
First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
Money Saving Expert
What's it about?

Saving money on water can involve fitting a water meter (see Water Cost Cutting Article). Yet at the moment, sadly much of the UK is being warned about drought, and told to stop using hosepipes. While we can all rant at the water companies' ridiculous leaks, in the meantime to help our environment, and to stop future costs rising, using less water seems to be the responsible action.

What to do?

Personally I've vowed not to bath any more (dont worry I'm not a smelly munter, I'm going to shower). But I thought I would tap MoneySavers' collective knowledge for other painless ways to reduce our water use.

Click reply to add your tip
Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at
Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000


  • auditbabe
    auditbabe Posts: 652 Forumite
    My sister made her family stand in the washing up bowl while in the shower so the water could be used on the garden. They also are limited to just 5 minutes under the shower.
    Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
  • point3
    point3 Posts: 1,830 Forumite
    An average bath uses 80 litres of water. At an average of 0.14 pence per litre for supply and removal, this costs 11.2 pence for the water used.

    A 5-minute shower uses about 30 litres of water based on an average flow rate of 6 litres per minute. This costs 4.2 pence.

    Backpackers and travellers might want to try a baby wipe instead at about 2 pence each ;)
  • ribenagirl
    ribenagirl Posts: 357 Forumite
    Most Water Boards will send out a free water-saving pack on request. They include gel bags (Save-A-Flush) which you place in your toilet cistern, which then expand and mean you use less water when you flush.

    Here's the one for Severn Trent: (Our water board, but I think they all do them)

    We have also tried a small plastic bottle filled with water in the cistern.

    Also it can be small common-sense things that make the difference - like, not leaving the tap running when you clean your teeth, and, ermm, provided the other people you live with are comfortable about the idea, not flushing the loo EVERY time you go (obviously, no. 2's are exempt from non-flushing ;):D)

    You can re-use washing up water as well for watering plants etc.
    :love: I :heart2: Boots :love:
  • JamesM_2
    JamesM_2 Posts: 154
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Here's a link to thames water water saving site, free Hippo's, save-a-flush's and what I think are leaflets about saving water.

    If you have a dishwasher then make sure it's full when you use it, same goes for washing machines. It actually uses less water to use a dishwasher than to do it by hand.
  • mgw99
    mgw99 Posts: 60 Forumite

    I've started using one from Donnachadh McCarthy's book:

    Have a jug / watering can near the sink so that when you are running the tap waiting for hot water you can fill up the can rather than letting the water run down the plug hole. Then you can use it to water the plants in your garden or on the windowsill. :)
  • carolbee
    carolbee Posts: 1,687
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    We have replumbed our bathroom so that the bath/over the bath shower water goes straight down a hosepipe that is permanently connected to the waste and then around the garden to where it is needed.
    Havn't needed QUITE so much this last day or so down here in Kent!
  • Lillibet_2
    Lillibet_2 Posts: 3,364
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Depends how extreme you want to be. Personally I think saving the washing up until there is a lot rather than just a few bits is a great excuse not to do the washing up:D Then the used water goes on the garden, via any greenfly;) You can roast or dry-microwave most veggies rather than boiling. using a slow cooker also reduces the amount of water you need in most "wet" meals but we aren't talking huge amounts here obviously.
    Mulching garden palnts will reduce the need for watering as they will retain moisute for longer, moving pot plants & house plants out of the sun will help too. Inserting upsde down plastic bottles into the ground with the bottoms cut off so that they can funnel water to the root of the plant will help, especially veggies like tomatoe plants & beans etc.
    I really don't like to shower in our house as we don't have a power shower but just a pathetic dribbley thing;) We bath our young son everynight so we just top up his used bath water a bit after he is done & continue to use that. Sharing baths is, of course, a suggestion which shouldn't earn you a wack with a rolling pin in such times:rotfl:
    If you don't have a water butt then even just sticking large plant pots under down pipes will help (I've had them all up the garden path too today:p) Or if you can, add a diversion onto the down pipe straight to the flower bed:D

    Post Natal Depression is the worst part of giving birth:p

    In England we have Mothering Sunday & Father Christmas, Mothers day & Santa Clause are American merchandising tricks:mad: Demonstrate pride in your heirtage by getting it right please people!
  • nabowla
    nabowla Posts: 567 Forumite
    - After boiling eggs/vegetables, use water on houseplants instead of throwing down the sink.
    - When cleaning, use a bowl of water to rinse out cleaning cloth instead of rinsing under a running tap.
  • pollys
    pollys Posts: 1,756
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker Mortgage-free Glee!
    "If it's brown flush it down, if it's yellow let it mellow"
    MFW 1/5/08 £45,789 Cleared mortgage 1/02/13
    Weight loss challenge. At target weight.
  • Penelope_Penguin
    Penelope_Penguin Posts: 17,288
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
    Lillibet wrote:
    I really don't like to shower in our house as we don't have a power shower but just a pathetic dribbley thing;) We bath our young son everynight so we just top up his used bath water a bit after he is done & continue to use that. Sharing baths is, of course, a suggestion which shouldn't earn you a wack with a rolling pin in such times:rotfl:


    I've read that power showers use just as much water as a bath, unless you're just in and out. Anyone know if this is true? :confused:

    Penny x
    :rudolf: Sheep, pigs, hens and bees on our Teesdale smallholding :rudolf:
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 341.4K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.7K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449K Spending & Discounts
  • 233.5K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 605.8K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.3K Life & Family
  • 246.5K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards