02.Water efficiency rebates and tips
A number of state and local governments, along with some water companies, offer incentives to switch to a water-efficient showerhead, and some of the showerheads tested are eligible for these incentives in some states. Incentives can be found through the government's Living Greener website.
The WELS scheme
The Water-efficient Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme requires a number of household products, including showerheads, to be rated and labelled according to their water efficiency. This scheme replaces the old voluntary AAA rating system.
Models with a three-star rating (currently the highest for showerheads) range from 6L to 9 L of water per minute. Of the tested showerheads, all but the Grohe have three stars and are 7.5L per minute.
The bathroom accounts for around 49% of all water used inside the home. Here are some tips on how to use a little less:
- Install water-efficient taps or tap aerators, which screw onto the end of the tap and give the feel of a higher flow rate while actually reducing it and aerating the water.
- Install a dual-flush toilet, which allows you to flush either half or all the amount of water in the cistern.
- Don’t leave the tap running while you brush your teeth or shave.
- A dripping tap can waste more than 2000L of water a month. Prevent taps from leaking by turning them off tightly and replacing washers as soon as they begin to leak.
- Check for leaks in the toilet by pouring a few drops of food colouring into the cistern. If the colour then appears in the pan (without flushing) you have a leak.
- Limit shower times to five minutes.