Ways to conserve water

It’s staggering how much water goes into our everyday consumables. Here are some examples and the volume of water that goes into their production:

  • 1 kg of beef: 44,000 litres
  • 1 dozen eggs: 8,400 litres
  • 1 burger and fries: 7,900 litres
  • 1 can of soda: 90 litres
  • 1 litre of beer: 100 litres
  • 1 loaf of bread: 1,700 litres

Water use stacks up. Here are hints for simple but effective water conservation:

  1. Take fewer showers
  2. Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save up to 500 litres of water every month
  3. Take faster (5-minute) showers instead of baths
  4. If you take a bath, don’t fill up your tub
  5. Turnoff  the water while washing your hair and save 570 litres of water a month
  6. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth
  7. Turn off the tap while you lather during hand wash
  8. Put a brick in your toilet tank and you’ll use less water with every flush
  9. While you wait for hot water, collect the cold water and use it to water plants
  10. Cut down on your laundry by re-wearing your clothes and reusing your towels
  11. Wash your dark coloured clothes with cold water to save water and energy
  12. When washing dishes by hand, don’t let the water run continuously
  13. Run your washer and dishwasher only when they are full
  14. Collect the water you use washing fruits and vegetables to water your plants
  15. Use a glass when drinking water
  16. Designate one glass or a refillable water bottle for your daily use
  17. Put a pitcher of water in the refrigerator and use it for daily drinking
  18. Pour your used ice cubes (or dropped ice cubes) on a plant
  19. Eat less processed food
  20. Cook foods in as little water as possible. This also retains flavour!
  21. Don’t use running water to thaw food. Defrost food in the refrigerator.
  22. Be a leak detective and fix your leaky water pipes/taps. I drop every second adds to almost 5 litres per day.
  23. Don’t flush your tissues. Drop them in the waste basket.
  24. Do fewer car washes or use a car wash that recycles water
  25. When cleaning our fish tank, give the nutrient rich water to your non-edible plants
  26. Don’t throw your pet’s old drinking water down the drain. Use it to water your plants
  27. If you are in the market for new appliances, invest in water and energy efficient models


If you know of other ways to save water, let us know and we’ll add it to the list. Email us at waterhogs@utsc.utoronto.ca