Anyone who grew up in Australia in the 70s and 80s usually has fond memories of long, hot summers and hours of fun in the backyard running through a sprinkler, under a hose or sliding down a Slip n’ Slide. But most kids these days are missing out.
In our survey of over 2,000 people, less than 10 per cent said they were using their hose or sprinkler for fun activities to help them and their families cool off. South Australians are the most likely to be cooling down under the sprinkler, followed by families in NSW.
Also gone is the stereotypical image of the family man washing his pride and joy, the family car, on the weekend and usually every weekend. We’re now a nation of dirty cars with more than three quarters of survey respondents advising that they wash their cars just once a fortnight or less – mostly less (55%).
Australians still enjoy spending time in their garden, however, as more than half of the respondents said that they spend time at least a couple of times a week watering their lawns and gardens with the biggest lawn lovers in WA (92%). The most neglected lawns are in Queensland and Tasmania as they’re more likely to be watered less than once a fortnight.
It was also discovered that more than 30 per cent of Australian homes are using at least some recycled water to water the garden, with Victorians and Queenslanders topping the list for the use of recycled water (40% and 35% respectively).
“The hose habits of Australians have changed since the last drought when severe water restrictions were put in place,” said Tim Kierath, founder of Hoselink. “It’s great to see that Australians are becoming more environmentally aware and embracing the use of recycled water. New subdivisions that offer recycled water will see a gradual increase in this great initiative.”
Besides watering the garden, hoses are being put to work to clean the house and outdoor areas. More than two thirds (70%) of respondents said that they use their hose to clean down the deck, pavers and tiled areas and 60 per cent are hosing down the house and washing the windows. “Particularly in coastal areas, it is recommended to clean the salt off the house to avoid corrosion” advised Tim.
- South Australians are least likely to be using recycled water – 84% said they don’t use any. Victorians are the most likely (40%), followed by Queenslanders (35%).
- Queenslanders are most likely to be filling a pool with their hose compared to the other States.
- Less than 10% of Australians are using their hose or sprinkler to cool off in summer.
- Sprinklers are still popular tools to water the garden – 25% always use one and 43% sometimes use one.
- We’re a nation of dirty cars! Only 11% of Australians wash their cars once a week and 55% wash their cars less than once a fortnight.
- People in VIC and ACT are more likely to take their cars to the car wash.
- WA is a State of lawn lovers – 92% are spending time at least twice a week watering their gardens.
- Ensure there are no leaks in your hose, fittings and taps.
- Use a rake, broom or outdoor blower to clear paths and driveways instead of a hose.
- The best time to water the garden is in the morning before 10am as there is less wind and sun, and the lawn has time to dry (fungus and mildew can grow if left wet at night). If it’s not possible to water in the morning, then between 4-7pm is the best time.
- When washing the car, put it on the lawn to water and fertilise the grass at the same time. Car shampoos use phosphates that are similar to many fertilisers. Be sure to use biodegradable soap and it won’t harm your lawn.