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Saving Water & Capture.

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A thread for sharing Technical Idieas tips and Tricks for the saving and reusing of water. For Discussions regarding the politics surround current water saving affairs, please find it here:http://powerforum.co.za/topic/1839-current-water-affairs/

Lets however welcome and share some much needed knowledge for the saving and capturing water in this thread. Thanks all! :>



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Not that difficult actually.
There are 2 ways:
1)      WANTS - Throw lots of money at the problem like tanks and filters and all that.
2)      NEEDS - Be very wise financially, buy 2nd hand, and think about each liter of water used. Just like with solar systems and batteries.
The core problem I identified is not drinking water that is easy to buy in bulk and store.
The problem is sewage water. If you don’t flush that toilet, you are going to be facing some serious problems, not to mention smells.
So, here is what we did:
Rule 1: No baths ever and shower only when you have to. Invest more in Wet Wipes and Dry Shampoo.
Rule 2: No watering the garden. Identify the few plants you have to save, water them only.
Rule 3: Catch all water used everywhere in the house.
Rule 4: Wear clothes longer. If you sweat a lot, rinse clothes whilst waiting for shower to get hot, catch that water!
Rule 4: All cisterns can only be filled with buckets. Close the taps on all of them.
Before you open any tap, think! Then open it very small and close it ASAP. Catch that water for toilet use. It adds up during a day.
As mentioned, invest in Wet Wipes and Dry shampoo to be able to skip showers. It does work.
Catch all the shower water in a bucket, used for toilet only, as there can be bugs you don't want to spread.
Here is the thing with showering. You have to use the toilet, right?
-          You can shower as quick as you can, 90sec as advised BUT if you run out of toilet water, you defeat the effort of saving shower water.
-          So use just enough shower water that you can flush your toilet for the days you don’t shower.
Ensure your dishwasher uses less than 5l per wash. You cannot wash a full load of dishes by hand with 5l of water.
In the end, after all the above was done, the washing machine was left being the biggest user.
Full load about 150-200l. Now you can spend a lot of money and buy one that uses less water … OR …
Always use a full load using the soaking cycle so that the clothes can soak properly, as you are wearing clothes longer in-between washes.
First we caught the rinse water and re-used that for the next load washing water. Saved 50% of the water, with all the used water used a 3rd time for the toilets.
Then we stopped the rinsing cycle by simply changing the detergent we used. We now could wash more frequently.
Caught a few litres rain one day so we started using rainwater for washing clothes.
Using that rainwater, we did not use any drinking water for 3 washes with all that greywater used for toilets.
That was the best day ever!
We add HTH (pool chlorine) to the grey water, which is stored in drums, to ensure no smell. It works, even after a week or more standing in a hot braai room.
Now you can add pumps and pipes or you can get some exercise and fetch the water with bucket for the toilets. We chose the exercise option. J
Before it all started, we used 25kl per month for 6 people with 4 working from home.
That came down to 10 500l when we were limited to 87l pppd.
On 50lpppd, we dropped to 5000l per month for the 6 (six) people.
It will still come lower when the rains start. Here is how:
To save costs, for tanks got very expensive, we got a portable pool with a cover to catch 2300liter of rainwater. All in for R1650.00 incl delivery.
That water equates to +-200 washes for the washing mahine that now uses about +-100l.
All that used water is then stored in 2 x 2nd hand steel drums, +-R100 each, to be used for toilet flushing … and selected plants in the garden.
And that is how we did it.
Low cost changes with a massive impact on our usage.
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  • 7 months later...

hi gents,

after having spent maybe hundreds [or more...] on tank gadgets and hours of time in order to 'refine' our rainwater harvesting i found the simple less than 100 bucks solution. get a piece of stainless steal mesh, make a hole in the tank and fasten the mesh on top, then let the water from the gutter run out on top of this [the mesh is at a slope in order to wash off any leaves etc and the openings are <1mm2]]. it does away with the leaf-catcher [those flimsy overpriced chinese imports] as well as the whole first flush system of which there are a variety and also costing an arm and what have you, the mesh costs about 130 rand per 1m2. already just the dew from my roof - no rain! - gives me 50-200l per night.
God bless!

tank sieve.jpg

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7 hours ago, Chris Louw said:

Hi Gabriel a piece of 80% shade net also does the job ..


what i like is the fact that you did no cutting to the tank itself, just the deksel; not that i mind, pretty thick plastic and a hole here and there will not undermine structural integrity [watse fancy woorde...]

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