News

29th November 2021

A free online tool to help UK businesses save water and improve their sustainability approach has been launched by Thames Water.

The ‘Business Water Use Calculator’, the first of its kind for non-household water customers, is aimed at the leisure, retail, hotel and hospitality sectors as well as offices and is available to use across the country. It will help identify low or no cost ways to reduce water consumption and in turn offer solutions for businesses to become more sustainable and potentially save money on water and energy bills.

Thames Water’s research has shown most businesses have the potential to make savings through simple steps such as finding and fixing drips and leaks and using water saving devices in toilets, urinals and showers.

Andrew Tucker, Head of Demand Reduction at Thames Water, said: “At a time when businesses face increasing pressure to become more sustainable, reducing their water use can be a really quick win.

“We’ve been visiting businesses for several years supporting them to reduce their water use and are welcomed with open arms when they realise that by saving water, they can not only improve their environmental footprint, but also save money on water and energy bills.”

How it works

The new calculator takes as little as ten minutes to complete and asks users to provide information about the sector they represent, how many employees they have and how water is used on the premises, including how many toilets, sinks and showers there are and how often the building is occupied.  At the end of the process they receive a tailored downloadable report which includes a quantified breakdown of their water use along with details of potential water savings and energy and carbon savings from using less hot water.

Alongside the launch of the calculator, Thames Water is also urging businesses to make sure their sites are winter ready and protected against the cold to avoid internal leaks and bursts on water pipes. Pipes often expand and contract as the air temperature drops below freezing and then warms up again, causing leaks, or in the worst cases catastrophic and expensive bursts, at weak spots such as where two pipes join. Leaks and bursts waste precious water, increase bills and can cause significant damage. Lagging pipes in colder areas like lofts and basements is recommended to protect them from rapid changes in temperature.

Andrew added: “Alongside our year-round advice to fix things like leaky loos we’re also urging businesses and all non-household organisations to get winter ready to guard against leaks and bursts this winter. Even a minor leak can lead to expensive repair and insurance costs, which the business itself will have to pay, so it’s well worth being prepared in advance of any cold spells.”

Water saving facts

  • A single leaking toilet can waste an average of 400 litres of water a day – about the same as five full bathtubs and add hundreds of pounds to your water bill
  • Some urinals can flush automatically 15 times an hour even when not being used. Adding sensors means they’ll only flush when used helping save thousands of litres of water a year and money on water bills
  • Heating water can account for a large proportion of a home or businesses energy costs so using less hot water will mean cheaper energy bills
  • Even a minor leak on a pipe caused by freezing and thawing can waste hundreds of litres of water a day. Lagging pipes helps protect them from the cold.

Try out the new calculator at https://www.thameswater.co.uk/wholesale/non-household-customers/business-water-saving-calculator  and find winter ready hints and tips here

In 2019 Thames Water launched a water use calculator for its domestic customers to help them save water in their homes – the first of its kind in the UK. To date it has been used by more than 50,000 households.