Social Distancing Plumbing Advice From the Professionals

Social distancing. The phrase that we have heard countless times over the past couple of months. COVID19 has undoubtedly changed the way we go about our day to day lives; but lets hope we can return to normal sooner rather than later. As we stay at home its important to look after your personal health, but there is more to consider. Have you thought about how this extra time at home will affect your plumbing? Read on for social distancing plumbing advice, but most importantly, stay safe.

Be careful what you flush

The demand for toilet paper, paper towel and wet wipes has skyrocketed since the outbreak, causing wide spread pandemonium in the supermarkets. It is important not to get careless during these desperate times. No toilet paper? Using paper towel as an alternative? In the words of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, stop it! Are you cleaning surfaces with disinfectant wipes and flushing them down the toilet? Again, stop it! Paper towel, unlike toilet paper, does not easily break down in water and will often catch on misaligned pipes and tree roots, causing a blockage. Same with wet wipes, although some brands are marketed as flush-able, they most certainly are not. If you are not sure as to what you can flush, simply stick to the 3 P’s – (toilet) paper, pee and poo. For more information on how this affects our sewers, click here to see the SA Water website.

Be aware of your water usage

Social distancing has not been all bad, at least everyone is washing their hands now! But with everybody staying at home and regularly washing their hands, showering etc, you may see a change in your water bill (especially families). There are a number of ways that you can save water, all while maintaining good personal hygiene.

1. Fix leaking taps

Its time to fix those leaking taps. Did you know that even a slow dripping tap can waste up to 20,000 litres a year? Think of it as water that you’re paying for but not using.

2. Check the toilet for leaks

Leaking toilets by way of the seating washer are one of the most common problems that we come across. The seal that keeps water in the cistern is dictated by a rubber washer at the bottom of the flushing mechanism. Over time, these washers will deteriorate and cause water to run down the flush pipe and into the pan. These leaks can be difficult to notice, luckily we are here to help, so here’s a tip. If you have food colouring in the house, put a few drops into the cistern water. Don’t flush the toilet yet, let the colouring settle and if the water in the pan is coloured, then you have a leak.

3. Water saving attachments

Consider installing water saving shower heads and aerators to taps. This is a great way to save water in a short amount of time at low cost.

4. Optimize appliances

When using your dishwasher and washing machine, be sure to do full loads instead of small frequent loads. If you have an old washing machine or dishwasher, it may be time to upgrade. New models have an efficiency unrivaled by older models.

5. Keep your showers short

Everybody is guilty of enjoying a long drawn out shower, especially in the colder months. But to be water wise we must keep our shower times down to 4 minutes, the length of a good song. Its totally fine to rock out in the shower to your favourite tune, but when the song is over, its time to leave the stage.

Use your social distancing time to get things in order

Have you had a DIY project in mind but never had the time to do it? Maybe a kitchen and bathroom renovation was planned but you became overwhelmed with all the detailed decisions. Or maybe you just wanted to learn a new skill or get fit. The point is, now you have the time, so use it wisely. We can complain and wait for the day normality returns, or we can make the most of a bad situation. So whats it going to be?

Thanks for reading our piece on social distancing plumbing advice, hopefully you found this useful. For more tips, tricks and information, click the blog option on our website. Alternatively, we can be found on or