Household water use
To improve the prediction of water demand across a network it is important to know the key behavioural drivers of variability in household water use.
What We Did
- High resolution water use monitoring and behavioural surveys of a representative set of metropolitan Adelaide households was performed.
- Statistical characteristics (frequency/duration/flow rates) for each household indoor end-use (shower, washing machine, toilet etc) were determined.
Identifying peak demand
- Average water use was 245 L/p/day for 2012/13. However, there is a high seasonal impact: 153 L/p/day in winter compared to 498 L/p/day in summer with afternoon peaks more prominent in summer.
- On peak demand days, 20% of households contributed to 50% of the total demand. Developing approaches that target these ‘high peak’ households represents a significant opportunity to reduce peak demand and therefore reduce infrastructure design and operational costs.
Household leakage reduction
- High resolution meters enabled fast and efficient identification of leaks. Overall leakage volume was estimated to be 5-8% of mean water use, but was deemed an unreliable estimate due to a small number of houses having very large leaks.
- Household leakage reduction could potentially produce water savings of 5-8%, but a wider range of households needs to be analysed to improve the reliability of the leakage estimate
Indoor end-use analysis
- Total indoor use was 135L/p/day, with split between showers, toilet and washing machines, taps, and baths/dishwashers as shown in Figure below. The proportion of total indoor use of the individual end-uses varied considerably between households.
- Householder perceptions of their use of water per end-use proved very unreliable. Households need greater information and guidance (e.g. monitoring) in relation to their indoor water use so that they can identify cost-effective water savings opportunities.
Indoor end-use for each household
University of Adelaide Personnel: Nicole Arbon, Mark Thyer, Kym Beverley, Martin Lambert
Collaborators: CSIRO, SA Water Corporation, Aquiba, Goyder Institute for Water Research