Swimming Pools Vs Water Meters

Did you know that residential swimming pools and hot tubs consume less water daily than a single household bath.

There are an estimated 250,000 pools in residential homes across the UK – the majority of these being outdoor garden pools. About 3,000 pools a year are added as permanent installations with typical costs of about £30,000.

Despite popular opinion, once full, swimming pool owners do not routinely empty their pools. In fact, the only reason for emptying a pool is to carry out repair or maintenance work inside the pool, and even then it is often possible to avoid draining the water by using divers for repair work, or by transferring the water into an inflatable above ground pool for temporary storage while the work is carried out, to be returned when the job is finished.

The volume of an average in-ground domestic swimming pool is about 75,000 litres (10m x 5m x 1.5m). Water loss can occur in two ways:
Evaporation and splashing and/or backwashing the filter to clean it

The average loss from evaporation on an outdoor pool is only around 30 litres a day – less than the water used in a daily 2 minute shower.

Backwashing the average pool will pump some 500 litres in a two minute operation fortnightly, which is equivalent to 36 litres a day.

In total, therefore the average swimming pool uses only 66 litres a day – less than a daily bath, and less than 2 daily showers.

Hot tubs
The average hot tub holds about 1,500 litres. Once filled, it is heated, filtered and chemically treated and the water is recycled within the unit, so no effective water loss takes place. Most hot tubs have a fitted heat retaining cover which, when the tub is not in use, limits the evaporation loss in the same way as a swimming pool, but the potential loss of water through evaporation is minimal due to its much smaller volume. The British and Irish Spa and Hot Tub Association, a sister association to SPATA, recommends that the water in a hot tub is fully changed about every three months for hygiene reasons. This therefore gives an annual water usage of 6,000 litres or 16 litres a day – less than half the water used in a daily two minute shower.

Comparison of daily average water usage

Household bath 100
2 minute shower 35
domestic pool 66
hot tub 16

Litres/day for a family of four

Household bath 400
2 minute shower 140
domestic pool 66
hot tub 16


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