Officials in Zimbabwe's second largest city said they are appealing to homeowners to flush their toilets at a specified time as a way to unblock sewers after days of severe water rationing.
Bulawayo City Council has asked its more than one million residents to flush their toilets simultaneously when water supplies are restored.
City officials said "synchronised flushing" was needed to clear waste that would have accumulated in sanitary facilities which will have been affected by days of water outages.
Bulawayo's two main supply dams have been drying up because of drought conditions prevailing in the arid, south western part of Zimbabwe, raising fears of worsening water shortages before the rainy season starts in November.
Synchronised flushing was first introduced to Bulawayo two decades ago at the height of a drought that ravaged the southern African nation.
Residents said that they were not "aware" of the new system the city council was proposing. They said the whole issue was not properly communicated to them.
Old water pipes have not been replaced in years which saw world record inflation before the formation of a coalition government between long-time president Robert Mugabe and prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
Power and water outages are common in Zimbabwe following years of political turmoil and economic meltdown.
Civic organisations said any moves by city authorities to solve water and sanitation problems dogging the south western province were welcome, but were also awaiting communication from them.