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It’s more important than ever to remember, that just because we’re out of the dry season doesn’t mean the drought is over. When (and if) rain comes, conserving water may be the last thing that comes to mind. However, water conservation should be a daily, year-round habit for all of us!
To help guide us into the cooler Fall months in California, here are some tips and ideas on how to conserve water all season long:
Change your sprinkler schedule
As the weather cools down and the days are shorter, lawns and plants don’t need as much water…and when it raining, they don’t need to be water at all. Change your sprinkler timer now and remember to turn it off when it rains. Another option is to invest in a weather-based irrigation controller and never worry about your sprinkler watering schedule. MNWD offers rebates on weather-based irrigation controllers, click here for rebate information. Not sure how much to water in the Fall, click here for a monthly watering schedule or to create your own watering schedule by using the Watering Calculator.
Help your tress survive the drought
Trees and water are both precious resources. Trees make our houses feel like home – they also improve property values, clean our water & air, and even make our streets safer & quieter. When we water wisely and maintain our trees carefully, we enjoy a wide range of benefits at a low cost and with little effort. The California Urban Forests Council and Invest From the Ground Up created water-wise water tips on how to “Help Your Trees Survive the Drought.” Click on the picture to find out how.
Check for leaks
Find and fix leaks now! One way to find out if you have a leak is to read your water meter before and after a two-hour period, when no water is being used. If the meter does not read exactly the same, you most likely have a leak. Most toilet leaks go unnoticed and waste a lot of water. To check if you have a toilet leak, put a couple drops of food coloring in the toilet tank, don’t flush the toilet, and wait about 15 minutes. If the color seeps into the toilet bowl, you have a leak. You can replace the flapper…or better yet, replace your toilet for a more water-efficient toilet and receive a rebate from MNWD! MNWD offers rebates up to $250 per toilet*. Click here to learn more.
*If you’ve already received a toilet rebate from MNWD, you may not be eligible to receive another rebate.
Get a jump on spring planting
The best time to plant is the Fall. The Fall season requires less water and will look better come springtime!
Invest in a rain barrel
Consider using a rain barrel to collect and store rain water runoff throughout the wet months. Water collected can be used to water indoor or outdoor plants, when needed, instead of turning on your sprinklers. MNWD offers rebates of up to $75 per barrel. To find out more, click here.
Redirect downspouts to capture water
Simply redirect downspouts outside your home to capture any rainwater and direct it to the garden or plant areas.
Install low-flow showerheads
Most water is wasted outdoors, but did you know showers are the largest indoor water waster? Reduce your indoor water use by as much as one-third by simply switching your old showerheads for low-flow showerheads.
Hold a household meeting to remind others to sick to these easy water saving tips
- Keep showers to 5 minutes (a shower timer is handy)
- Run the dishwater and washing machine with full loads only
- Fill the sink when hand washing dishes – don’t let the water run
- Don’t use the toilet as a wastebasket
- Keep a bucket in the shower to catch water that can be used on container plants or outdoor landscape