Stop Flushing Dollars Down The Dunny

Frugality at Home: Part 3 – The Bathroom


If you had to stand in front of your sink and throw dollars down the drain, you would be horrified. Yet that is what the average Australian does every time they step into the bathroom. Money is needlessly being thrown away on a daily basis.

It is easy to make the switch to saving, without compromising your lifestyle. Our frugal living series continues with a few tips to making the trip to the bathroom less expensive.

Solar power water heater

Use solar to heat your water. A solar hot water system is thought to save about a third on your hot water household needs (which could add up to $100 – $160 a year). However, there are many factors that will influence the saving, such as how much hot water you use, what type of system you currently have fitted and whether your roof faces the sun. Depending on your initial budget, you can have different types of system as well. Installing systems can initially be expensive, but it is possible to obtain rebates, grants and subsidies from the Australian Government, depending on certain conditions being fulfilled.

Installation consideration

Install water heater close to output. The longer you have to run the hot tap to get water to temperature at the output end, the more water you will use, and the more energy is lost through the pipes. If you are undergoing a new build, this may be a point to consider.

Mixer taps for less wastage

Install dual handle taps when replacing. Using two taps to reach a certain temperature of water wastes money on water and energy usage. It’s estimated you could save $2-$8 a month with this simple change.

Flush less dollars

Put a bottle of water in the toilet cistern; this saves water every time you flush. Toilets use about 30% of the average household’s water consumption. It’s thought that the average home flushes 5000 times a year, so by cutting the flush water down you could save 5,000 litres of water a year. Alternatively you could purchase a cistern displacement device, or replace with a water efficient toilet, but a bottle full of water works as well.

Water wastage when washing
  • Use a water saving shower head – showers use 17% of the residential water supply, so swapping to a water saving head can help you save. It’s estimated that savings could add up to about $25 a year.
  • Use aerators on taps – these regulate the flow of water and cut back the amount of water you are using. If you have hard water, clean aerators and showerheads with vinegar regularly to reduce deposits and build-up. This saves water and energy heating your water, by up to 50%.

Insulate the hot and cold water pipes and also your boiler. Putting a jacket around your boiler could cut heat loss by 75%, which could add up to almost $100 a year.


Next room to cover in our frugality at home series, the bedroom room.