Christchurch residents are likely to avoid a total watering ban after their adherence to hosing restrictions.
The Christchurch City Council imposed the restrictions last October to ease pressure on earthquake-damaged water reservoirs and wells.
It warned last month that a total outdoor watering ban was ''quite likely'' after the December 23 aftershocks caused further damage to infrastructure.
However, it now says a total ban may not be necessary.
Council water and waste manager Mark Christison said the city had saved about 18 million litres of water a day since the restrictions were put in place.
Repair crews had fixed major breaks caused by the December 23 aftershocks and were working on smaller leaks as they were found around the city, he said.
While the ''real challenge'' would come over the rest of January and February, Christison said the council would not need to increase the restrictions to a total ban if saving levels continued.
''If everyone plays their part, and subject to no further large aftershocks, we should be able to get through the summer on the current level of restrictions.''
He said the problem was not the amount of water in the city's aquifers but the network's ability to pull the water up and deliver it around the city during the summer peak periods.
The quakes are estimated to have caused $146m of damage to the city's water infrastructure.
Under the current level 3 restrictions, even-numbered properties can carry out hand-held watering on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, while odd-numbered properties can water on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.