Summer water use

We want you to think about using water differently in summer than you do in winter. From December to April, we're asking you to choose to use less.

Thanks for letting us know about your water!

Our team is on it, so there’s no need to worry. We’re continuing to flush pipes in some parts of Kelvin Grove.

Even if your water still looks a little discoloured, it’s still safe to drink. But if you'd prefer not to, you can always head to Papaioea Park to fill up on water.

Here you can see what areas of the neighbourhood will be flushed over the next few days.

Maps shows the areas to be flushed and the dates

We’ll keep you posted.

Read more about discoloured water

Make the choice to only water outside every second day

Summer water use means only using unattended hoses and sprinklers on your lawn or garden every second day – and then only between 7pm and 9pm. Your day is based on your house number: even houses water on even days, and odd houses on odd days.

This is essentially the same as a level 1 water restriction but is voluntary.

We're asking people to start these efforts from December, through to April.

Many other councils also use this model and their residents love how much easier it makes things.

This applies to all of our district

Palmy's water comes from the Turitea Dam and 12 bores around the city and villages. Ashhurst, Longburn and Bunnythorpe each have bores to supply them.

Moving to summer water use is not about having insufficient water but rather being careful stewards of a precious resource. Our city is extremely fortunate compared to many others around the country. We have planned well and have a range of plentiful water sources available.

This is about showing that we value water, and don't waste it. It focuses on choosing to minimise our water use over summer, changing our behaviour long-term, and valuing water as the incredibly precious taonga it is.

We think Palmy, Ashhurst, Longburn and Bunnythorpe will get behind a conservation effort like this as we know our residents place great value on our environment. We saw the power of your conservation efforts back in September 2020 when our main water pipe to the city broke and due to your amazing efforts, we were able to save more than 100,000 litres of water an hour!

Every year we get lots of enquiries asking when water restrictions will start. This approach means you won't have to wonder. We will only move to compulsory restrictions on outdoor water use if our water conservation efforts aren't enough, and we have concerns about a water shortage in the near future.

Dial shows arrow pointing towards summer water use.

Summer water use 101

  • Councils vary in the timing for their summer watering period. In Palmy, we've decided to run from the start of December to the end of April.
  • Only hose your garden or lawn every second day between 7pm and 9pm. Watering in the evening avoids the heat of the day when evaporation losses can be high.
  • You can continue to do other watering outside like washing your car or home, but we ask you try to do this on your assigned day, and avoid the evening peak watering period if possible (that's 4pm to 8pm).
  • We will only move to compulsory restrictions if our water conservation efforts aren't enough, and we become concerned about how much water we have available.
  • We'll be promoting summer water use across the city over summer, including by letting businesses know and encouraging them to save water over summer too.
  • Winter water use means outdoor water use can return to normal but we'll still be encouraging you to only use what you need. 

We have a range of levers to try and avoid or delay water restrictions

Normal water use

This is how we use water over spring and winter, when there are no water restrictions or conservation measures in place. 

Summer water use

A voluntary measure where we encourage people to use water as though we’re in level 1 water restrictions to try and help remove, or delay the need for mandatory restrictions.

We suggest you only use use water outside between 7pm and 9pm, every second day. The day you choose should be based on the number on your letterbox: even numbered houses water on even dates, and odd numbered houses on odd dates.

Level 1 restrictions: Unattended water use evenings only, every second day

We encourage people to minimise water use. Unattended hoses, sprinklers, and garden irrigation systems can only be used between 7pm and 9pm: even houses on even days, and odd houses on odd days. Handheld hoses can be used at any time.

Level 2 restrictions: Unattended water use prohibited

Unattended hoses, sprinklers, and garden irrigation systems cannot be used at all. Handheld hoses can be used between 7pm and 9pm: even numbered houses on even dates, and odd numbered houses on odd dates.

Commercial activities requiring hoses aren't restricted but we encourage operators to minimise water use or reschedule the work until the restrictions are lifted. 

Level 3 restrictions: All outdoor water use prohibited

Unattended hoses, sprinklers, garden irrigation systems and handheld hoses or watering cans cannot be used in your garden. Car washing, household maintenance and outdoor washing by handheld hose are also prohibited. Filling swimming pools, spa pools and paddling pools is prohibited.

Commercial activities requiring water use via hoses may only be carried out with the permission of Council.

Essential water use only

This is only be used in a severe water shortage, or if we have a burst water main and need to do urgent repairs. We provide guidance at the time about what water use is acceptable.