As the second driest continent on Earth, Australia frequently experiences drought, water shortages and restrictions each year. As warmer weather approaches, it's important to be as water-efficient as possible, and that includes choosing home and garden products with the Smart Approved WaterMark seal of approval to ensure every precious drop is saved.
‘It doesn’t feel like long since the end of the last drought eight years ago, and we’ve been doing really well as a nation to keep our water use down,' says Chris Philpot, CEO at Smart Approved WaterMark, 'However, there is always more we can do to help save water by choosing water-efficient products and making small changes in our behaviour. Smart Approved WaterMark identifies products and services that save water to help you make the right choices. So next time you’re shopping for water-related appliances for your home and garden, look for the hand holding the blue water drop.’
Hoselink’s patented hose fittings are Smart Approved WaterMark-certified and are guaranteed never to burst off the hose or leak. In fact, they’re proven to save water thanks to their reliable, 100% watertight fit on your hose. Our latest addition to the fitting range is our 12mm Hose Connector with Flow Control designed to give you full control at your fingertips. Fitting to the end of your hose in place of the Hose End Connector, the flow control lever allows you to toggle the strength of the water flow as well as turn it off and on at the end of the hose. This is ideal for changing accessories as well as stopping water flow so not a drop is wasted while you return to the tap. In this blog, we'll share our top tips for saving water, starting with Hoselink Hose Fittings.
What’s the difference between Hoselink and other fittings?
The most commonly used hose fitting in Australia is the 'click-on' connector, which has been identified as having two main weak points: weak retention claws inside the female fitting and poor grip, causing connectors to frequently burst off the hose or leak, wasting an untold amount of water over time. Hoselink’s Connectors fit together with a unique ‘point and twist’ bayonet-style fitting containing a white split ring and internal barb that clamps the hose firmly to the connector to ensure it never moves, and a watertight o-ring to o-ring seal between the connectors.
What makes Hoselink fittings better?
Hoselink’s fittings offer a new, much more reliable way to use your garden hose, with every product designed for ease of use and functionality. Made from strong nylon fibre designed to last for many years in the harsh Australian sun, the 'point and twist' design is simple to use regardless of age and is even suitable for those with arthritic hands.
The Hoselink fittings range extends to a series of 18mm connectors and hoses ideal for commercial and rural use thanks to the same leak-proof guarantee. The larger internal hose diameter allows for increased water flow and pressure whilst the three-layer material knit and thick wall design helps prevent kinks and twists, with high abrasion resistance to prevent damage from dirt, debris or rubble.
Every fitting in the Hoselink system has an identical face, so multiple hoses can be joined together with ease whilst adding and changing accessories is a breeze – there’s no need for any extra connectors! Suitable for any standard 12mm or 18mm hose.
Can I use my existing watering accessories with Hoselink fittings?
Yes! However, depending on your existing accessory connection, you may require an adapter. If you have a watering accessory with a male or female thread, then it can be connected natively to the Hoselink Universal Tap Connector (female thread) or Accessory Connector (male thread). If you have a fixed/moulded click-on fitting that cannot be removed then you may need a male connector piece or a female Click-on Adapter. Unfortunately, this is not a 100% watertight connection, so we do recommend using Hoselink fittings wherever possible. In many instances, click-on connectors are removable, so the extra connector is not needed to adapt your accessories to the Hoselink ecosystem.
It is a common misconception that you need a big water tank to save a significant amount of water. In reality, if you live in a typical house and you divert just one of your down pipes, you can save up to 25kL per year with a 500-litre water tank. Alternatively, you could occupy your entire courtyard with a 30,000-litre tank and only save an additional 5kL.
There is a huge variety of water tanks out there designed for spaces of all shapes and sizes. Here are a few to consider:
The slimline water tank is the original space-saving water tank and it has done a fantastic job of bringing water tanks into suburban homes. They come in shapes and sizes from ultra-thin to the not so slim. Most people will be aware of this type of water tank, but with current trends leaning towards higher density living, they are still too space hungry for many households.
Furniture rainwater tanks are the newest products on the market, and they are particularly targeted at modern subdivisions and townhouses with courtyards. They offer an attractive alternative to other water tanks and because they are dual-purpose, you also gain an outdoor entertaining area at the same time. It is a win-win for you and your guests.
Bladder tanks are made from a flexible membrane, which is designed to be hidden away under your house or deck. The flexible membrane allows it to be installed in tight places without the need for any major renovations. They come in a number of sizes to suit pier spacing and house configuration and there are a variety of suppliers available.
Rectangle tanks are rigid water tanks designed to fit under decks. They are more limited in their ability to fit through tight spaces during installation than the bladder tanks, but they are also significantly cheaper. Rectangle/under deck tanks come in many shapes and sizes to fit under most elevated decks and there are a range of suppliers available.
In ground/underground water tanks
These water tanks provide the ultimate space-saving solution because they only occupy space under ground. The biggest drawback is that you need to dig up the ground to install them. These water tanks are best suited to new developments as you can plan for them without needing to dig up your nicely manicured yard. Underground tanks come in all shapes and sizes.
Wait for the rain
Probably the easiest way to save water: the rain - this is where water butts come in handy! Pause your irrigation systems and let the rain do the rest. It is always best to use water sparingly.
Use your tools
Often when we see a pile of leaves covering the driveway, we reach for the hose to blast them away. Consider picking up the rake or the broom to clear away the mess instead and save the water for another day.
Pick the right plants
It can be easy to save water when you pick low-maintenance plants; opting for native varieties will mean less watering and maintaining but they will keep your garden looking beautiful. This tip goes hand in hand with mulching your plants. Mulch is a natural covering, often made from straw, compost, sugar cane or wood chips, that's laid around plants and beds and used to reduce evaporation and water run-off. As a bonus, it also provides additional nutrients to your plants and restricts weed growth.
Keep an eye on your hoses, taps and fittings
One leaking tap can waste up to 2,000 litres a month*. To check for leaks, turn on your appliance and check the water meter reading. Wait 4 hours and read again, if the meter has ticked over, something is leaking. You can help prevent leaks and drips outside by using good quality fittings like Hoselink’s Hose Connectors that are guaranteed to never leak or burst off the hose or tap.
Water at the right time, when your garden needs it
By watering in the morning or evening, your garden will be more likely to retain the moisture rather than losing most of it to evaporation. That goes for your lawn as well as your garden beds. An easy way to tell if your lawn needs watering is by stepping on it. If it springs back up, it likely doesn’t need watering. It is always best to do less frequent, thorough watering sessions rather than a light sprinkle every other day. By giving your lawn a good soak, you will encourage deeper roots, which will give you a stronger, more drought-resistant lawn. Where possible, choose a lawn that doesn’t need much water and is of a smaller size.
Tap timers make it easy for you to track how much water you’re using and for how long while enabling you to control how you often you water your garden. You can also delay watering it if it rains. Hoselink makes two different Tap Timers: our first model, the Automatic Tap Timer, includes a manual rain delay function in case you see a wet weather forecast plus multiple programming abilities allowing you to pick a schedule from every hour to every 15 days. Our newest model, the Automatic Tap Timer with Rain Sensor, will detect the rain automatically and cancel the schedule for you. It also has other handy features like a child-lock and the ability to set up three different watering schedules. So all you have to do is programme the timer and put your feet up! To see a detailed explanation on the Tap Timer with Rain Sensor, click here.
How to save when doing chores
When you need to wash your car, consider doing it on the lawn - many car shampoos use the same phosphates as some fertilisers. You can also use a bucket in the shower to catch water and keep it for hand washing the car or watering the garden, this can also be done with the grey water from your washing machine. When purchasing new appliances that use water, such as toilets, dishwashers and washing machines, be sure to look for WELS (Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards) water rating. Taking shorter showers, not over-filling your bath and ensuring you turn off the tap when brushing your teeth are some easy ways to reduce water wastage in the home.
Group your plants together by water consumption and use a drip irrigation system (in conjunction with a tap timer) to prevent over-watering.
Sprinklers are a great solution as opposed to using a hose. Sprinklers control duration of watering, the frequency of watering and will also direct the water to where it is needed. Avoid using your sprinklers if it is too windy to avoid wasting water where it isn’t needed.