Permanent Water Saving Rules

The Victorian Government's permanent water saving (or use) rules are a set of common-sense rules to reduce demand and make sure we use water efficiently across Victoria.

These rules are in place at all times across the state and came into effect in November 2011. When water restrictions are in place, the more severe rule or restriction applies. Breaking these rules could result in penalties.

The permanent water saving (or use) rules are uniform across Victoria and are included in each water corporations permanent water saving plan. The rules will not prevent the need for water restrictions during major drought periods but will help us use water more efficiently and encourage all Victorians to value this precious resource for the long term.

View key water saving rules

man washing car on grass using bucket and spongeMore information on permanent water saving rules can be found on each water corporation's website.

Water restrictions

Water restrictions are sometimes used by water corporations to help manage urban water use when water supplies are low. There are four stages of restrictions, ranging from stage one (mild) to stage four (severe).

Water restrictions are only applicable to customers on a piped water (reticulated) supply. They do not apply to the use of recycled, reclaimed, rain or grey water, unless supplemented/topped up by drinking (potable) water.

Water restrictions are managed by Victoria’s urban water corporations. Each stage of restriction is set out in the water restriction by-law of your water corporation and implementation of these restrictions are guided by its Drought Preparedness Plan. Restriction policies are based on uniform guidelines, your individual water corporation may have minor variations in the details to account for local conditions.

Exemptions may be granted by water corporations to those with special needs and who have principles in place to ensure consistent of exemption allocations.  

For more information regarding restriction by-law or exemptions from water restrictions contact your water corporations. Your water corporation also prepares Drought Preparedness Plan (DPP) that can accessed through their website.

Stylised, animated image of sun, river and treesAnnual Water Outlook

Each year, the Victorian water industry prepares Annual Water Outlooks that are used to inform the community, and outline actions that will help to protect the security of Victoria’s water supply.

View the latest Annual Water Outlook for Victoria

Metropolitan Water Corporations

Click logo to go to water corporation website.

Melbourne Water Logo
South East Water logo - click to go to south east water websiteYarra Valley Water logo

Regional Water Corporations

Click logo to go to water corporation website.

Barwon Water logoCentral Highlands Water logoColiban Water logo
East Gippsland Water logoGoulburn Valley Water logoGippsland Water logo
Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water logoLower Murray Water logoNorth East Water logo
South Gippsland Water logoWannon WaterWesternport Water Logo
Western Water logo 

Page last updated: 25/04/23