Just a few surefire tips to help you do your part to conserve water:
- Cut off your lawn sprinklers, entirely – you’re probably not using it anyway and your kids certainly aren’t either. Yes your lawn may die… but when the drought is over you can easily re-landscape using the money you saved by not watering.
- Cut off the water to the mature trees and shrubs. Most well-established bushes and trees can survive drought conditions for longer periods of time than other yard plants. HPS recommends to stop watering these during the drought restrictions.
- Use water twice, aka a grey water system. You don’t need anything exotic to do this if you don’t want to spend bucks on plumbing. Here are a couple simple ways to do this without going all out:
- Attach a hose to your washing machine discharge and run it out to your thirstiest outdoor plants when you do the laundry. We can easily hook this up if you want help.
- Take a bucket in the shower with you and use any caught water for indoor/potted plants or even flushing the toilet.
- Take shorter and fewer showers. Assuming you have instant hot water at your shower, five minutes is all you need. I know because I timed myself this morning. If you don’t have instant hot water you need to get a circulator (see #9 below). Even with hair washing and a shave I had 35 seconds to spare. To save even more stop shaving in the shower! Did you know?? Unless you’re hitting the gym every day (or spend a lot of time on public transit) or with sickly people, a shower every other day is actually recommended by most doctors for healthier skin and hair.
- Install a low-flow shower head, 1gallon per minute max. There are some great ones out on the market now. If you need a quick recommendation, feel free to ask me. Have reviewed about 12 popular models and learned which are the best.
- Stop rinsing dishes. Place them in your dishwasher and run it when it only when full! Todays dishwashers are more miserly with water than washing by hand and can do a better job too!
- Check your entire water system for leaks: irrigation and household systems have many places for hidden leaks. If you would like an inspection for leaks and/or a water audit, please feel free to call Steve.
- Use less electricity. Surprise! Research performed by the Energy Commission has found that water and energy resources are inextricably connected. This is known as the Water/Energy Nexus. The transportation, treatment and disposal of wastewater, and the energy to heat and consume water account for 20 percent of the total electricity and 30 percent of the natural gas consumed in California. Basically, more than half of the energy consumed in California is used to move, clean, dispose of or in some way process our water. Take conserving water to the next level by remembering to shut off your lights and unplug your electronics while not in use
- Get a hot water circulator. Many gallons of water are wasted every day by folks waiting for the hot water to show up at the shower, tub or sink. Eliminate both the wait and the waste of water by investing in a circulator. These are easily installed and can be inexpensively retrofitted to nearly any plumbing system. Do it! Call us and we can help.
Although each county will have different regulations, fines, etc. the state currently prohibits:
- Using potable water to wash sidewalks & driveways
- Runoff when irrigating with potable water
- Using hoses with no shutoff nozzles to wash cars
- Using potable water in decorative water features that do not recirculate the water
- Using outdoor irrigation during and 48 hours following measurable precipitation
Remember to check your county’s local drought regulations for any added restrictions.