If your property has a pool or spa there are many ways you can make them more water smart. Many of these tips apply to paddling and temporary pools too.


  1. Use a pool cover. A properly fitted pool cover can stop up to 97 per cent of evaporation and reduce the amount of chemicals required to treat the water.
  2. Check your pool for leaks. A tiny leak can lead to a substantial amount of water loss.
  3. Maintain the correct chemical balance in your pool and clean it regularly. Top up your pool with rainwater runoff.
  4. Before getting into the pool, rinse your dirty feet in a small tub.
  5. When purchasing a new pool filter, look for a water efficient model. An energy efficient pump can also significantly save on energy costs.


  • Don't overfill the pool. Lower water levels will reduce water loss due to splashing.
  • Make sure the water level in your pool is only halfway up the skimmer box. Overfilling the pool stops the skimmer from working efficiently and wastes water.
  • Reduce your consumption of treated water by topping up your pool or spa with water from a rainwater tank or downpipe diverter.


  • Backwashing typically accounts for 30 per cent of a pool's water use. Make sure your backwash cycles are kept to a minimum and are in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications.
  • Backwashing too frequently wastes water, while not backwashing enough wastes energy by forcing the pump to work harder.
  • Where possible, backwash after heavy rainfall (when you would usually need to lower the water level of your pool).


Checking for leaks is an important part of a pool owner's maintenance routine. A tiny leak could result in a large amount of water loss. Signs of a leak include:

  • A rapid drop in water level
  • Unusually rapid algae formation soon after chemical treatment
  • Loose tiles or a cracked pool deck
  • Gaps and cracks in the pool shell
  • Ground sinking around the pool structure
  • Constantly damp soil around the pool or house.


If the water level of your pool drops more than 3 centimetres within 24 hours, investigate for problems and consult a professional. If you suspect that your pool is leaking, follow these steps:

  • Place a bucket filled with water on a pool step (weight it with a rock or brick). Mark the water level on both the inside and outside of the bucket. The starting points should be about the same. Check the water levels against the marks 24 hours later. You may have a leak if there is a greater drop in the water level on the outside of the bucket.
  • Check the skimmer. Skimmer leaks are quite common and are caused by a separation between the plastic skimmer and the concrete pool. This leak looks like a crack, gap or tear and is easily repaired with pool putty.
  • Check for leaks in the pump and filter equipment and on the shell of the pool, around inserts into the pool walls (for example lights) and at wall interfaces (for example tile lines).
  • Check the return lines when the pool pump is running. If there are bubbles, there may be a leak in the suction side of the filtration system. Once you have detected a leak, make sure you repair it quickly!


Fit your swimming pool or spa with a cover. A cover prevents up to 97 per cent of water evaporation, decreasing the amount of water and chemicals that you need to maintain your pool or spa.


If you are in the process of designing or intend to redesign your pool area, there are things you can do to improve water efficiency and reduce energy costs.

  • Strategic placement of trees and shrubs can give your pool protection from wind, helping to reduce evaporation. Consider planting or constructing windbreaks along any aspect from which your pool is exposed to strong winds.
  • Install a rainwater tank to collect water for use in your pool, garden or home. If rain is forecast, wait for the pool to refill naturally.


Source: https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/water/use/home/pool © State of Queensland, 2014.
For more information on this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/au/deed.en.

© Smart Water. All rights reserved.