Orange's strict water restrictions should be freed up to allow motorists to wash their cars at home with high pressure cleaners.
That's the view of Orange City councillor Glenn Taylor who says washing cars within the two-hour time periods on Sundays residents are allowed to water their gardens would not add greatly to water usage.
"They don't use hardly any water at all. Nowhere as much as a hose. It's an efficient way to clean things," he said.
"They'd use a fraction of the water they'd use with a hose or a trigger hose," he said.
Cr Taylor said residents should also be able to use high pressure water cleaners on garden furniture to ensure they were clean before people had outdoor meals.
He said there were health and hygiene reasons to support cleaning outdoor dining areas.
"With all the smoke and dust a lot of people have asked me whether they can use them," he said.
They use hardly any water at all.Cr Glenn Taylor
His call comes just days after council launched a campaign to encourage people to leave their cars dirty to save water.
Council's Level 5 water restrictions ban car washing. The only option for people is to pay for their car to be cleaned at a professional car wash.
"A lot of people can't afford to go and spend $20 on a car wash every week," he said.
Cr Taylor said many people took pride in keeping their cars clean.
He said it would be a reward to people for their efforts in cutting water usage.
Last week the average daily water usage per person in Orange was 120 litres which is below the Level 5 target of 160 litres a day.
"This is a tangible way to help people. It's just common sense," he said.
Cr Taylor has asked council staff for a report into whether car washing with high pressure cleaners could be allowed.
He said recent rain and the receipt of water flowing from the Macquarie River last week had slightly improved Orange's drought situation.
"We're in a better position than we were four to six weeks ago," he said.
Cr Taylor said history had shown Orange residents would not abuse the situation and waste water.
"The Orange people will do this responsibly. They have proven to be responsible," he said.
The latest council figures showed Orange's dams had slightly more water in them at the end of last week than they did at the start of the week, up from 21.05 per cent capacity to 21.09 per cent.
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