Save 500 Euro Per Annum on Water Charges

Tips to Save €500 or more on Your Water Charges

Last month we put together a quite detailed report estimating what different types of water-charges-protest-corkfamilies are likely to pay per annum when we are all being charged for water by the meter.

The report predicts that a household of 5 could pay over 1500 euro per annum on water charges and sparked quite a reaction across both traditional and social media channels. Indeed the sign on the right was even spotted in the Rebel County last week at a protest against the introduction of water charges.

The real cost of water charges report can be read here

According to the 2011 census the average number of people in an Irish household is 2.7. By implementing the below recommendations we believe an average Irish household can save 500 Euro or more on water charges per annum.

Tip 1: Spend less time in Shower, Use Water Saving Shower head and avoid Baths

3 Spray Setting Deluxe Water Saving Shower Head Only €24.95

Showering is probably going to be the biggest contributor to water charge costs in most households. UK reports estimate that people spend an average of 8 minutes per day in the shower.

Power showers can have and output of up to 18 litres per minute but our research shows that most normal showers have an output in the region of 12 litres per minute.

An 8 minute shower at 12 litres per minute translates into 47 cent per shower or €171.00 per person per household per annum.

Installing a water saving showerhead will reduce water consumption by 40% without compromising the water pressure.

This translates to an annual saving of over 68 euro per person per household per annum or a saving of over €340 in a household of 5 people.

If you don’t want to change the showerhead you could try just fitting a shower flow

Shower timers from €4.95

restrictor and to get into the habit of spending less time in it a shower timer can be a useful device.

Average Shower 12 Litres per Minute (6 cent per minute)

Average Bath 80 Litres ( 38 cent per use)

Average Shower with Water Saving Showerhead (3 cent per minute)

How to Calculate the cost of your shower?

Get one litre jug and time how long it takes to fill when placed under your showerhead then multiply this out to see how many litres per minute is used. For instance if it take 5 seconds to fill it will mean that your shower has an output of 12 litres per minute.

Tip 2: Install cistern displacement devices on older toilets

Most toilet cisterns installed in the last 10 years will have a 6 litre capacity. However older toilet cisterns can have will flush between 9 and 12 litres of water at a time.

Rather than replacing the whole unit one can simply use a cistern displacement device like

Toilet Tank Bank €4.95

a toilet tank bag to reduce the flush capacity of your toilet. To use the toilet tank bank you simply fill it with 2 litres of water and attach it to the inside of your cistern. This means that when you flush 2 litres always remain.

6 Litre Cistern (3 cent per flush)

9 Litre Cistern (4.5 cent per flush)

12 Litre Cistern (6 cent per flush)


Tip 3: Only use Washing Machine and Dish Washer for full loads

If each household could use both the dishwasher and the washing machine one time less per week the savings would be €19.03 over the course of the year on water charges.

Washing Machines / Dishwashers Water Usage

Washing Machine 50 litres per cycle (24 cent per use)

Dishwashers 25 litres per cycle (12 cent per use)


Tip 4: Install Water Butts to Downpipes of Home to collect Rainwater 

In our report we conservatively estimated that a household uses about 7,300 litres of

Full Water Butt Kit €54.95

water per annum for gardening purposes (about 20 litres per day) Some homes will use significantly less and some significantly more.

If 7,300 litres of rainwater collected from your Water Butt is used instead of mains water however you would be saving over 35 Euro per annum on your water charges.

Tip 5: Secure your Outdoor water supply against theft, vandalism and frost.

Hopefully water does not become the new home heating oil when it comes to theft in Ireland but one it is a possibility and an unsecured outdoor water supply is open for acts of cynical vandalism for anyone that may bear a grudge against you.

The other factor here though is that it is very easy to accidently leave an outdoor tap on

Tap Lock from €28.95

and if it runs through the night or for an extended period whilst you are away on holidays it could prove to be a very expensive exercise.

You can protect against this by installing an Outdoor Tap Lock a clever magnetic locking device which are far superior to padlocks in so far as they cannot be easily manipulated and they don’t rust and seize up when subjected to outdoor elements.

It can be fitted to tap spout if rarely used or can be converted into a tap handle lock with adaptor if the tap is used more regularly.

You can prevent your outdoor taps against frost and pipes potentially bursting by installing an Outdoor Water Tap Cover.

Tip 6: Avoid taps running to get the correct water temperature

It is recommended that we drink 2 litres of water per day but many of us are guilty of wasting at least one litre of water in order to get it to a temperature that we desire to drink. If we waste 6 litres each per day in order to get the right water temperature then it will add up to more than 10 Euro per person per annum.

A simple solution to avoid this is to always keep a full two litre bottle of water in the fridge and refill before going to bed at night.

The water temperature works the other way as well of course when we want to get hot water for washing ourselves or dishes, pots and pans.

If your immersion is a long way from your kitchen sink you could very easily waste 20 litres of cold water waiting for hot water to come through.

Electric Taps €197.95

Do this five times a day over the course of the year would add up to €178 in water charges.

An Instant Electric Kitchen Hot Water tap is a plug in device with a heating element built into the tap.

This will not only save money on water charges but on your energy bill also as it will no longer be necessary to turn on the immersion or heating system and heat a full cylinder of water when you only need a few litres.

Install Water Saving Tap Aerators on Bathroom and Kitchen Taps

With bathroom taps do avoid the obvious things like avoiding leaving the tap running whilst brushing your teeth. If you spend 3 minutes brushing and your bathroom tap has an output of 10 litres per minute you could waste close to 11,000 litres per person per household by doing this which translates to over 50 euro per person on water charges every year.

Installing water saving tap aeratorson your bathroom taps will reduce the flow rate to just

Water Saving Aerator €5.95

4.5 litres per minute without compromising the water pressure. This will save you in the region of €1.50 for every hour the bathroom tap is in use.

Kitchen taps generally have an output of about 15 litres per minute and with a swivel tap aerator this can be reduced to just 7.6 litres per minute whilst maintaining a strong water pressure. We will save over 2 Euro for every hour the tap is in use.

Like with the showers a good idea is to time how long it takes to fill a one litre jug from your bathroom and kitchen sinks and work out the flow rate per minute. Calculate against the above figures to see what installing tap aerators might save you.

The above figures are based on the Commission for Energy Regulations Water Charges Consultation Plan published on July 31st 2014.

According to the paper if you have neither a septic tank or a private well you will be charged a rate of €4.48 per thousand litres when we are being charged by water meter.

If you have either a private well or a septic tank you will be charged a rate of €2.24 per thousand litres (divide figures quoted above in two to calculate your own circumstances if this is your situation.

Save 10% on any product ordered between now and Sept 15th 2014 by using the code Sept14 at checkout when ordering online.

Alternatively get discount when ordering over the phone by calling 01 8428187 and quoting the code.

Save 500 Euro on Water Charges Related Links

The real cost of water charges. A breakdown on what it will really cost families per annum.

Tips on How to Save Money on Hot Water (includes video presentation)

Colm Griffin of Today with Sean O Rourke Interview RTE Radio One

Why is limescale is adding to your energy bill?

See Ireland’s most comprehensive range of water saving products





  1. What will happen if everybody reduces usage. Irish water will up the standing charge to have enough money to pay the fat cats in charge. They have no interest, at the moment in finding and repairing the leaks in the mains pipe work. It’s just a money raising exercise for jobs for the boys. They have sublet all of the work in essence they do nothing.

    1. Hi John,
      It is of course possible that Irish Water could up the rates but the CER will have to approve any proposed increases and I think there is only so much Irish people are willing to take. Most of the tips outlined in the post including the products will offer customers a quick return on investment anyway and will continue to help them save money whatever the water rates might become.

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