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Parks, Recreation & Culture » Sustainable Kamloops » Environmental Sustainability » Water

Water Conservation


Water Conservation or Water use efficiency is important to community sustainability for a number of reasons:

  • Economic impacts of constructing and operating the water utility, and the influence of these impacts on affordability;
  • Assurance that water supplies will be available for many purposes - drinking, hygiene, landscaping, food production, firefighting; and
  • Environmental effects from water withdrawal, and energy consumption/greenhouse gas emissions from system operation.

Indoor Water Saving Tips

These simple and easy to do water conservation tips can save thousands of litres of water a year just inside your home.


  • Install water-saving showerheads to save up to 10 litres per minute.
  • Repair leaking toilets to save as much as 100 litres per day. If you think you have a leaky toilet, put a few drops of food coloring in the tank. Don't flush and let it sit for about 10 minutes. If the color starts to appear in the bowl, you have a leak.
  • Older toilets can use more than 20 Liters per flush. New ultra-low flow toilets use just 6 Liters per flush. The newer models are designed to give a powerful flush.
  • Take the 5-minute challenge! Can you shower in 5 minutes or less? You'll save 10 to 20 litres for every minute you reduce your showering time.
  • Install a toilet dam or displacement device such as a bag or bottle to cut down on the amount of water needed for each flush. Be sure installation does not interfere with the operating parts.
  • Don't let the water run while brushing your teeth or shaving.
  • Place a bucket in the shower to catch excess water and use this to water plants. The same technique can be used when washing dishes or vegetables in the sink.
  • Use a wastepaper basket instead of the toilet for tissues, dental floss, insects and other trash, and save 6 to 20 litres per flush.


  • Use dishwashers and washing machines only for full loads. If your machine has a setting for smaller loads use them.
  • Don't let the water run while washing dishes or cleaning vegetables.
  • Store drinking water in the refrigerator. Don't let the tap run while you are waiting for cool water to flow.
  • Do not use running water to thaw meat or other frozen foods. Defrost food overnight in the refrigerator.

Rest of the House

  • Never pour water down the drain when there may be another use for it such as watering a plant or garden, or for cleaning.
  • Insulate your water pipes. You'll get hot water faster and avoid wasting water while it heats up.
  • Consider installing an instant water heater in your home so you don't have to let the water run while it heats up. This will also reduce water heating costs for your household.

Outdoor Water Saving Tips

  • Water less often. Don't water every second day just from habit. Frequent watering will cause shallow roots that dry out easily. Start out in the spring by watering once a week and water more often only as necessary when hot summer days arrive. Remember to abide by the Watering Regulations. Most of the year, lawns only need one inch of water per week.
  • Water lawns during the early morning hours when temperatures and wind speed are the lowest. This reduces losses from evaporation.
  • Install irrigation devices that are the most water efficient for each use. Micro and drip irrigation and soaker hoses are examples of water efficient irrigation methods.
  • Check sprinkler systems and timing devices regularly to be sure they operate properly.
  • Avoid over fertilizing your lawn. Fertilizer applications increase the need for water. Apply fertilizers which contain slow-release, water-insoluble forms of nitrogen.
  • Avoid the installation of ornamental water features (such as fountains) unless the water is recycled.
  • Do not leave sprinklers or hoses unattended. A garden hose can pour out 600 gallons or more in only a few hours. Use a kitchen timer to remind yourself to turn sprinklers off.
  • Avoid purchasing recreational water toys which require a constant stream of water.
  • Minimize lawn area. Consider replacing turf with ornamental grasses or groundcovers.
  • Select native and/or drought-tolerant grasses, ground covers, shrubs and trees and group them according to their water needs.
  • Leave your lawn longer. Raise the height of cut on your mower to 2-3 inches (5-8 cm). Taller grass shades and cools the soil and reduces the need for water.
  • Use mulch to retain moisture and reduce weed growth.
  • Position sprinklers so they water only the areas that need it.
  • Aerate your lawn to allow air, water and fertilizer to reach the roots.
  • Turn your automatic sprinkler system off when it rains.
  • Use a broom, not a hose, to clean driveways and sidewalks.
  • If you wash your own car, park on the grass and use a hose with an automatic shut-off nozzle.
  • Use a shut-off nozzle on your hose which can be adjusted down to a fine spray so that water flows only as needed. When finished, turn it off at the faucet instead of at the nozzle to avoid leaks. Check hose connectors to make sure plastic or rubber washers are in place. Washers prevent leaks.
  • If you have a swimming pool, consider a new water-saving pool filter. A single backflushing with a traditional filter uses 180 to 250 gallons of water.

Sustainability Services
955 Concordia Way
Kamloops BC V2C 6V3
ph 250-828 3461
fx 250-828-3790

Note: All correspondence is entered into our system and will be directed accordingly. The City of Kamloops will endeavor to contact you within two business days. Thank you.