Water conservation is already a way of life for Cambria, but now the State of California is taking steps to...
Make Water Use Efficiency a California Way of Life
California recently passed two new laws that require water providers, including the CCSD, to set new, permanent water use targets by the year 2022. It is important to note:
- There are no immediate impacts on customers.
- Many details for implementing the new laws will be worked out over the next several years.
The laws provide a framework for setting targets that include standards for the amount of water used indoors, the amount of water used outside (based on our local climate) and for water lost to leaks in our system. These standards will be rolled into one overall target for our service area. Individual households and businesses will not be required to individually meet any standards.
Once targets are set, we will decide how to best achieve the new targets as a service area. In the meantime, we are continuing to offer rebates and programs to help our customers use water wisely.
Water Saving Tips
- Limit showers to 5 minutes and install a 1.5 gallon-per-minute (gpm) showerhead.
- Install water efficient fixtures, i.e. replace 3.5 or 5-gallon toilets with 1.28 gallon-per-flush or dual flush toilets.
- Run only full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher.
- Scrape your plate instead of rinsing it before loading it into the dishwasher. Considering putting food waste in compost instead of down your garbage disposal.
- Don't leave water running while shaving or brushing your teeth.
- Use drought-tolerant plants.
- Adjust watering schedule seasonally and with changes in weather.
- Timing is everything! Knowing when and how much to water allows you to keep a healthy landscape.
- Use Drip (micro) irrigation systems.
- Periodically check your sprinkler system to ensure it is operating properly. (Frequent power outages in Cambria can wreak havoc with timers).
- Wash the car with water from a bucket, or consider using a commercial car wash that recycles water.
- For more ideas on water efficiency and water sense products click here http://www.epa.gov/watersense/
Fix Your Leaks
Did you know household leaks can waste nearly 1 trillion gallons of water annually nationwide? Common types of leaks found in the home are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves. Here are some tips to check your house for leaks:
- Check your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter changes at all, you probably have a leak.
- Identify toilet leaks by placing a drop of food coloring in the toilet tank. If any color shows up in the bowl after 10 minutes, you have a leak. (Be sure to flush immediately after the experiment to avoid staining the tank.)
- Examine faucet gaskets and pipe fittings for any water on the outside of the pipe to check for surface leaks.
- Consider installing a device such as the Flume Smart Water System to monitor your water use in real time and receive alerts if continuos flow is detected.
Water Wise Landscapes
The CCSD is a SLO County Partner in Water Conservation. Please go to our partner website www.slowaterwiselandscaping.com for useful landscaping tips.
Depending upon your existing landscaping, you may be able to substantially reduce your household's water use by removing turf grass, using drought-tolerant plants, and landscaping with rocks, bricks, gravel, wood and other materials. The CCSD strongly urges its customers to avoid planting turf.
Before you plant a garden, review these seven water wise steps:
- A professional can help you organize your garden for water efficiency while retaining aesthetics and practicality.
- The addition of organic matter to the soil increases water retention and penetration.
- Two to three inches of mulch will keep soil cool, enhance water retention and retard weed growth.
- There are numerous native and Mediterranean-climate plants that thrive in the Cambria area.
- Replace high-water, high-maintenance plant/lawn areas with drought-resistant shrubs and groundcovers.
- Group plants according to their water and sun needs.
- Adjust your irrigation system and check for efficiency to save water.
Working on your landscaping? Be sure to use California Landscape Contractors who are trained in water conservation methods.