Top tips for saving water
during the COVID-19 pandemic

We know COVID-19 is dominating your thoughts and work at present, and public health comes first. At Waterwise we will continue to keep the flag flying for water efficiency, and we are adapting our work and water-saving tips for the current extraordinary situation.

Working from home and/or self isolating?

Many of us will be spending more time at home due to the current circumstances around the COVID-19 virus. It’s vital that we follow the hand washing guidelines and other measures recommended by Public Health England, which can be found here. If you would like to find ways to save water in other areas of your life, here are a few tips for how to go about it.

For the latest Covid-19 updates for the UK head to:

At Home

  • Collect water used from cooking. Once it has cooled you can use it to water plants with. Or if you’re boiling vegetables, use this water to start a soup.
  • When refreshing a pet’s water bowl, use the old water on house plants rather than pouring it down the drain.
  • Another great tip is to keep a jug next to the kitchen tap to collect any water that you run when waiting for the tap to heat up. You can use this to water your houseplants or in the garden. 
  • A quick iron or hanging it up will freshen any shirt that you’ve been wearing for the online meetings rather than throwing it in the wash.

In the Bathroom

  • Choose to take a shower rather than a bath. As long as you keep it short you will save water. 
  • Plan on doing a home workout today? Plan to have your shower after your workout – and make it a short one!
  • Put on your favourite 4 minute song and try to shower before the song ends. Try one of our Waterwise songs on the Waterwise Shower Playlist on Spotify.
  • Try turning the water off in between washing your body, shampooing and conditioning. To go one step further, place a bucket in the shower with you to collect any excess water – you can use this to flush your toilet. 
  • Avoid shaving with the shower or tap running – use a small bowl of water instead.
  • Fancy a relaxing bath? Don’t fill it to the top and when you’re done save the water and use a bucket to flush your toilet or water non edible plants.
  • Did you know between 5-8% of toilets are leaking? Why don’t you check to see if yours has a leak. Use a bit of food colouring in the cistern before you go to bed and check to see if your toilet bowl water has changed colour in the morning. If it has, you know you’ve got a leak. Make note to get this repaired when we are out of self isolation.
  • Research suggests that your hair thrives when you don’t wash it as much. Why don’t you use this time at home to try and reduce hair washing or use dry shampoo instead. This will not only save you water but shampoo and conditioner too! 
  • Remember to only flush the 3 P’s – Pee, Poo and Paper. 


  • If you are lucky enough to have a garden use this time to plant some drought resistant seeds. Some great examples are Lavender, Agapanthus ‘Silver Baby’ and Anchusa azurea. Take a look at some more options here.
  • Out in the garden watering your plants? Make sure you use a watering can instead of a hose – a hose pipe can use up to 1000 litres of water an hour!
  • Make the most of the fact you’re not driving as much and don’t wash the car. 
  • Stop watering your lawn. It’s ok to let your grass go brown during dry spells – it will bounce back as soon as it rains again.
  • Check the weather before you water. Many plants can go at least a day without watering, and if you know rain is forecast for tomorrow then it’s ok to give it a miss today. The RHS have some great watering advice here.

Learn Something New

  • Want something to watch? Check out some of these watery documentaries: Our Blue Planet, Explained: The World’s Water Crisis or a TEDxTalk on water.