Use this checklist to make sure you are doing all those small things that can make a big difference in saving water, saving you money and saving the planet.
No 1: Implement an inspection programme that looks like:
- Submeters that will identify a trend of increased usage that cannot be associated with increased production activities.
- Equipment or areas where leaks could occur, like pipe-work joints, connections and fittings.
- Look for Indications such as rising dampness, rust marks or swelling boards.
- Check equipment in addition to pipes and hoses.
- Underground pipe-work using leakage detection companies can employ techniques such as pressure testing, flow monitoringand echo correlation.
No 2: Reevaluate existing processes
Cleaning in the food industry is paramount to ensure safe and hygienic conditions. There are however alternatives that can and should be considered.
Saving Water Indoors
- Ensure you use only brooms, squeegees and dry vacuumcleaners to clean surfaces before washing with water.
- Ensure washing equipment has aerated spray nozzles with shut-off valves.
- Ensure hoses are fitted with high-pressure, low-volume nozzles with shut-off valves.
- Where possible, mop floors instead of hosing.
- Switch from wet carpet cleaning methods (e.g. steam cleaning) to dry power methods or spot cleaning.
Saving Water outdoors
- Sweep parking, paved, plant and path areas rather than hosing
- Reconsider the need to washbuilding exteriors or other outside structures.
- Reduce the frequency of cleaning external equipment and floors where possible.
- Change window-cleaning schedules from 'regular' to 'as required' and use squeegees.
- Washvehicles only as needed. Wash the inside of trucks only.
- Limit the use of high-pressure sprayers, unless they are needed to protect human health and maintain safety.
- For equipment that needs to be cleaned regularly, consider using process waterfrom other areas.
- Consider alternative methods of cleaning, such as vacuums.
- Use scrapers and brooms to remove residue build-up in plant machinery.
- Regularly check that spray nozzles are aimed correctly.
- Plant an indigenous garden around the company, use stones and pots to create features.
No 3: Modify equipment
A small modification in existing equipment can result in substantial water savings.
- Install trigger-operated guns on hoses so that operators can use less water during clean up.
- Change taps, nozzles and shower fixtures to high pressure, low volume alternatives.
- Add timers and/or pedals to assure water is used sparingly and efficiently.
- Adjust flows to the minimum required to maintain performance.
- Install in-line strainers on sprayer heads.
- Adjust pump cooling and water flushing to minimum required for operations.
- As appliances and equipment wear out, replace them with water-saving models.
- Install water saving toilet systems (e.g. low flush, vacuum, dehydration, or composting toilets), adjust flush valves.
- Install tap aerators and high efficiency showerheads.
- Choose conveying systems that use water efficiently.
Don’t forget to train staff on water saving initiatives. New methods of cleaning will take a while to implement and will need constant supervision.
Share any other water saving ideas you may have.