For most residential customers, focusing on outdoor water use can result in substantial water savings. Saving water is not only good for your pocketbook it will also help protect the valley’s future water supply!
Grassy lawns might make sense in wet climates, but in dry areas like the Santa Clarita Valley, they’re huge water-wasters.
- It’s easy to over-water your lawn! A good rain can eliminate the need for watering for as long as two weeks. If your grass springs back up after you step on it, it does not need to be watered.
- Water lawns during the early morning hours when temperatures and wind speeds are the lowest. This reduces losses from evaporation.
- If you see water runoff from your yard each time you water, it could mean that the lawn needs aeration. When you aerate your lawn, you give the water somewhere to go besides down the storm drain.
- Raise your lawn mower blade to at least three inches. A lawn cut higher encourages grass roots to grow deeper, shades the root system and holds in soil moisture better than a closely-clipped lawn.
- Avoid over-fertilizing your lawn. The application of fertilizers increases the need for water especially in the summer months. Don’t fertilize monthly; instead, apply fertilizers which contain slow-release, water-insoluble forms of nitrogen.
- Plant drought-tolerant grasses, ground covers, shrubs and trees. They require less watering and they usually will survive a dry period without any watering.
Irrigation & Sprinklers
- Don’t water your street, driveway or sidewalk. Position sprinklers so that water lands on the lawn and shrubs, not paved areas.
- Install sprinklers that are the most water-efficient for each use. Microsprinklers, drip irrigation, high efficiency nozzles and soaker hoses are examples of water-efficient methods of irrigation.
- Do a weekly check for broken or clogged sprinkler heads and replace them right away.
- Do not hose down your driveway or sidewalk. Use a broom to clean leaves and other debris from these areas
- Outfit your hose with a nozzle that stops water flow completely when not actually using the water. Remember to turn off the water at the faucet when you are finished using the hose.
- Do not leave sprinklers or hoses unattended. Your garden hose can pour out 600 gallons or more in only a few hours. Use a timer to remind yourself to turn it off.
- Check all hoses, connectors and spigots regularly. Replace hose washers to eliminate leaks.
- Mulch to retain moisture in the soil. Mulching also helps to control weeds that compete with plants for water.
- Consider using a commercial car wash that recycles water. Ask at the car wash if they recycle water: often they will display a sign stating that they do.
- Use self-service car washes. They use the least amount of water because they use high-pressure hoses that have a pistol grip and can be turned on and off easily.
- If you wash your own car, use a bucket for the soapy water and a shut-off nozzle for your hose.
- Use a pool cover. Uncovered pools can lose up to a thousand gallons of water from evaporation each month (as well as energy if your pool is heated).
- Learn more about swimming pool leaks with this swimming pool water loss calculator