Saving water: How much saving makes sense – and how much is exaggerated

  • How much Water consumes one person at the Day?
  • which Opportunities to save be able sensible be implemented?
  • Why is save water sometimes dangerous?

Due to the ever drier summers and the associated drought, saving water is one of the demands that is constantly read and heard. 2022 was a very dry year, with river levels falling to alarmingly low levels. But how do you really save water? Does every tip you read make sense? and when is saving water harmful or even dangerous?

Drinking water – a precious commodity

the private one water consumption has increased from 147 liters per person per day in the last 30 years to 127 liters in 2021 removed. the reasons One of the reasons for this is that households use it more sparingly due to the increased costs for water and sewage. Also environmental awareness certainly plays a role, but so does demographic change and ever more economical washing machines and dishwashers, more economical shower heads and toilet cisterns. All of these points together lead to the lesser use of Drinking water guided.

There are various sites on the Internet that will give you tips and advices how you can save water at home. Much of this is relatively easy to implement and sensible. Here are some examples:

  • Showering instead of bathing
  • Toilet box with economy button
  • Turn off the tap when soaping your hands
  • Repair or replace leaky faucets as soon as possible

On the other hand, tips that are more complicated to use are those you can use, for example, with the rainwater to flush the toilet. It is also always a question of whether you should replace a household appliance so that it uses less water and energy. Here you have to calculate when the purchase will pay for itself. Such purchases are difficult to make, especially for families who have a tight budget. But in general it can be said: Calculated over the year measures, to save water, are definitely worth it. Especially if you can save on hot water, because every liter of water you have to heat also pollutes the environment with CO₂.

Save water at all costs?

But when will saving water become more likely harmful? It can happen, for example, that the water supplier’s supply lines are blocked due to insufficient consumption digester gases form. The water has stood for too long, it no longer circulates properly. You can do that as consumer However, do not change anything. In this case, it is the responsibility of the operator to prevent this by flushing the pipes in a targeted manner or by carrying out a suitable renovation or conversion. the Donut Water companies are now calling on consumers to “use water carefully instead of saving.” However, this places the costs that operators would have to bear on the consumer passed on.

Incidentally, the same problem applies to them too sewage pipes. Due to the ever-decreasing consumption, too little water flows there. This means fecal matter is no longer flushed away as much as it should be and begins to accumulate in the sewerage to rot, foul gases rise and escape through the manhole covers. To put it clearly: It stinks! Other discharges such as soap residue, shower gel, etc. remain in the pipes for longer, which can lead to damage to the pipes over time. Consequence: The waste water pipes also have to be flushed more often and possibly replaced earlier. Thus, the saving effect has basically fizzled out.

These problems only affect you as a consumer indirectly. But there is another problem: if water sits in the pipes for too long, germs can form. Here are mainly those Legionella dangerous that can lead to flu-like symptoms, pneumonia and even death. Form in the water pipes biofilms, in which these pathogens can diligently multiply. And that means that one of the tips, which is to turn down the hot water temperature of the heater, can prove to be dangerous to your health. Especially in the shower, in the warm water, these legionella cavort in the steam. Only at one water temperature above 60 degrees they are killed. This means that you should not set the temperature of the hot water from the heating system below this value, the temperature in the pipes should not fall below 55 degrees. You should also let the hot water run before you get into the shower, preferably by opening the window and leaving the room. If you from the Vacation When you come, it is advisable to let the water run for a while, preferably using the outside tap, if available.


It sounds absurd. On the one hand you should use less water if possible, on the other hand being economical can lead to problems. Germs like legionella can prove dangerous. If you live in a house with more than three rental apartments, the landlord is legally obliged to have the water checked for legionella every three years and to have the pipes flushed and disinfected by a specialist company in the event of an infestation.

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