Sprinkler restrictions now in place for Waikato District

Waikato District, Hamilton City and Waipa District are now all on Water Alert Level 1.

The move to Water Alert Level 1 was triggered by a significant increase in water consumption across the region. Water Alert Level 1 means that sprinklers should only be used between 6am to 8am and 6pm to 8pm, but a hose pipe can be used at any time.

Warmer weather always leads to an increase in water consumption and since this time last month, use of Waikato District Council-supplied water has increased by 5% a week.

Waters Manager Karl Pavlovich says that even though all of the Waikato District Council water supply is now metered, water conservation is still an important part of managing the economic and ecological impact of water supply. “The alert levels are key reminders or check-in points for our communities on how much water we are using as a whole and provide our residents a point to reflect on how they are using their water,” says Mr Pavlovich. “Even though we’ve had a very wet year so far, we still need to react to the increased demand and the community can play their part by using water wisely ahead of what could be a long, dry summer.

“There are lots of ways to conserve water, taking shorter showers, watering the garden by hand, or washing your car on a piece of lawn which needs watering can save hundreds of litres a day.”

Hamilton City Council’s City Waters Manager Maire Porter said, recent summery weather has caused a noticeable jump in water use in Hamilton. “Over the past two weeks the city’s water use has increased by over 20 per cent, the warmer weather means pools are being filled and sprinklers are being turned on.”

Waipa District Council Water Services Manager, Tony Hale said it was unusual to see water usage peak so early in the season. “We have been monitoring the district’s water usage closely over the past few weeks and have seen a significant increase in usage as the sun has come out. In the past two weeks Waipa’s water use has increased from 187 to 203 million litres, up 14 million litres from the same time last year.

“While it is tempting to turn on the sprinklers and rush to fill up our pools, it’s essential we all play our part to conserve water now so we will all be better off in the long run.” Smart Water has an e-newsletter to let you know when your alert level changes, it also has a week-by-week water use graph and other water saving tips.

Sign up to receive it at smartwater.org.nz/subscribe The Smart Water Starts with You! sub-regional summer campaign aims to make long-term change to how we use water and is a joint venture between Waikato District Council, Hamilton City Council, and Waipa District Council.


About the Water Alert level system:

Water Alert Level 1

Use sprinkler systems between 6am – 8am and 6pm – 8pm

Hand-held hosing can be used anytime


Water Alert Level 2

Use sprinkler systems on alternate days between

6am – 8am and 6pm – 8pm

Hand-held hosing can be used anytime


Water Alert Level 3

No use of sprinklers.

Hand-held hosing only


Water Alert Level 4

No use of outside water systems

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