The Rancho Santa Fe Post

Helpful Tips to Conserve Water Inside and Outdoors

Governor Brown's May 9, 2016 Executive Order, "Making Water Conservation a California Way of Life," not only focuses on outdoor water usage, but also aims to reduce indoor per capita water use. 

"The State Water Resources Control Board is being urged to not take a 'one size fits all' approach, but rather to take proper consideration of each District’s population and land use patterns. It remains to be seen how the SWRCB works to carry out the Governor’s Order," Marlene King, SFID Div. 3 Director explains

With that in mind, below are water conservation tips RSF residents can use in everyday activities:

  • Use the dishwasher: Studies have shown that in households with two or more people, a dishwasher uses less water than washing dishes by hand. To get the most significant savings, scrape your dishes clean and don't pre-rinse them. Also, only run the dishwasher when it is completely full.
  • Take short showers, avoid taking baths: The average bath uses between 30 and 50 gallons of water. And, that is if the tube is filled only once -- most bathers add more hot water as the bath cools. On average, showers use less water. An old shower uses about 20 gallons of water but installing a modern, low-flow showerhead can reduce water consumption to just 10 gallons per shower -- assuming you don't stay in there all day. 
  • Smart laundry: Wash only full loads of laundry. If you must wash a partial load, adjust the water level to match the load. Try to avoid using the permanent-press setting, as it uses additional water during the final rinse cycle.
  • Kitchen Conservation: Thaw food on the counter, or in the case of meats, in the refrigerator. Steam vegetables in a microwave oven, rather than boiling them in a pot. Or, use the leftover boiling water to irrigate your plants when the water cools down. Finally, wash fruits and vegetables in a bowl of water rather than under a running faucet. You'll save more than 3 quarts of water each time.
  • Lawn and garden: When using lawn sprinklers, ensure they're not spraying the house, street, driveway, sidewalk, or patio. Water early in the morning or late in the day when temperatures are cooler and less water will evaporate.