If you’ve recently opened your dream restaurant you might be working on ways to cut costs. You might also be looking for ways to do your bit for the environment. The good news is that conserving water is a way to do both without too much effort.
When the civil plumbing was done during construction, the best water saving mechanism was likely installed in the building. This means it’s now up to you and your staff to implement a few expert pointers to ensure that you conserve as much water as possible to do your bit for corporate sustainability.
Water Saving Tips That Work!
Whether you have a small kitchen or a kitchen of the biggest restaurant in town, it’s always a good idea to save water wherever possible. Not only will you be saving money on your water bill, but you’ll be lowering the strain on an already strained water system. Let’s dive into a few of the top ways in which your kitchen can really make a difference.
1. Repair Leaks Immediately
With all that’s going on in a busy commercial kitchen, it’s often easy to overlook the small leaks and drips. The intention might be to “get to it later” but these leaks often go unrepaired until they turn into a massive problem.
Aside from inflating your water bill, it also leads to a monumental waste of water. It’s important to call your local plumber to deal with the leak as soon as you see it.
2. Invest in Water-Efficient Fixtures & Appliances
One of the easiest ways to make a big difference right off the bat is to invest in water-efficient appliances. Look for appliances listed under the Water-Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme. You’ll find everything from taps to the most efficient dishwashers. Always consider products with the most stars on the label as they’ll be the most efficient ones.
3. Use Appliances Correctly
Investing in energy-efficient appliances is one thing but, you also need to use them correctly to actually make a difference. In most kitchens, dishwashers are often the biggest culprits of water usage and wastage. This is because they’re usually running the whole day and not always with a full load.
To make sure you use your dishwasher efficiently, follow these easy steps:
- Opt for a model with a high WELS rating
- Always use the economy setting
- Ensure the dishwasher is full before switching it on
- If the dishwasher has a rinse-hold setting, using this option will be more economical than rinsing dishes under running water from the tap
4. Don’t Waste Running Water
Leaving water running is the biggest way to waste water. Make these steps rules to live by in your kitchen:
- Don’t rinse vegetables and fruits under running water. Place a large bowl of water on the counter and use that to rinse any produce.
- Meat should also not be thawed under running water. Be proactive and place meat in the fridge to thaw overnight.
- If someone is doing dishes by hand, they shouldn’t rinse them under running water. If your kitchen has two sinks, fill one with clean water and use it as a rinsing sink. If you’re working with one sink, simply place the dishes on the rack as normal and then just rinse off with a jug of water afterwards. One jug of water will still be considerably less than letting the tap run while you wash.
- If you’re currently letting the hot water tap run while you wait for it to get hot enough, don’t let that water flow down the drain. Catch it in the rinsing sink or use it in a bowl for rinsing produce. Alternatively, use it to water any plants in the restaurant. You can also catch it in a bucket, add a few drops of bleach and then use it to wipe down counters or even floors.
5. Spread the Word
It’s important to share your water-saving concerns and ideas with your employees since they’ll also be working in the kitchen and it’s not something only one person can do. Here are a few tips to create awareness:
- Talk about water-saving tips in meetings and be open to suggestions and additional tips from employees
- Encourage employees to report signs of leaks and then fix them immediately to show you’re “practising what you preach”
- Display water conservation posters in the kitchen by the sink, staff rooms and toilets
- Ensure that all senior management lead by example
- Newly appointed employees should be encouraged from their first day to adopt an attitude of water conservation
With these useful tips, saving water is easier than you think. By applying a few disciplines and investing in the right appliances and fixtures you’ll easily see a reduction in your water bill. More importantly, you’ll also be conserving water and doing your bit to reduce the strain on the current water system!