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In the home

Residential indoor water use accounts for 9% of all water used in the Okanagan valley. In the winter, when most water used is indoors, this climbs to 48% of all use.

Because of our naturally hot and dry climate, we have faced water shortages in the past and we will face them in the future. And since we all share the same water, it is important to be good neighbours — to budget and share the water we have and keep it clean!

As more and more water meters are installed in Okanagan homes, we have an opportunity to understand exactly how much water we use. And, saving water means savings in our pockets! Even if you aren't on a water meter yet, such measures will likely be introduced in the future. Learning to be WaterWise now gives us a chance to form good habits that will pay off when meters are installed.

If your home doesn't have a water meter, try this Water Calculator to estimate how much water your household uses. Now that you know how much water your household is using, keep reading for tips on how to reduce that water use!

Check for leaks in your home

While dripping taps and running toilets are easy to detect, many leaks aren't as noticeable. Toilets, humidifiers, ice makers, and reverse osmosis water filtration systems can all have slow silent leaks — wasting water and costing you money! How to Go Green in the Bathroom describes how to check your toilet, and the Regional District of North Okanagan describes how to check for slow leaks.

Rather watch a video? Check out this one from ToolGirl Mag Ruffman! How to detect a leaky toilet – and fix it!


Keep your water clean

We all live downstream from someone. What your upstream neighbours put down their drain could end up in your water system. And what you put down your drain could affect your downstream neighbour. The drains in our homes are connected to a much larger system — the Okanagan Basin. There are a number of ways we can protect our water sources — and protect our neighbours — based on what we do in our homes. Medications and chemicals, like harsh cleaners and paints, should not be flushed down the toilet or washed down the drain. Instead, take unused medications to any pharmacy, and take paints and other chemicals to appropriate disposal locations.

For more information on hazardous waste disposal in your area, check out the waste reduction department of your regional district:

Make sure every room in your house is WaterWise

There are many ways we can reduce our water use in the home, from changing behaviours such as reducing time spent in the shower and only running the dishwasher with full loads, to installing water- and energy-efficient appliances. For WaterWise tips for every room in the house, check out the Home Water Works calculator.

For more water-saving tips, check out:

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Okanagan WaterWise is an education and outreach program of the Okanagan Basin Water Board
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