IN THE KITCHEN

  • Run the dishwasher only when fully loaded.
  • Use the dishwasher's "economy" setting if possible.  Remember that hand-washing dishes may use more water than a dishwasher.
  • Garbage disposals use large amounts of water.  Consider composting food waste or putting it in the trash instead.
  • Do not use running water to thaw meat or frozen foods.  Defrost frozen food in the refrigerator or in your microwave.
  • ​If you run the faucet while waiting for water to get hot, collect it in glasses or a pitcher, then use the collected water for drinking, watering plants, etc.
  • A water-efficient showerhead will pay for itself in a few months.
  • Install aerators on faucets.
  • Don't leave faucets running while brushing teeth or shaving.

OUTDOORS


  • Water the lawn no more often than necessary.  Do it early in the morning & avoid watering on windy or rainy days.
  • Don't use a sprinkler that sprays with a fine mist.
  • Use sensors & other technology to help sprinkler systems work more efficiently.
  • When washing your car, use water & soap from a bucket.  Use a hose with a shut-off nozzle for the final rinse.
  • Raise your lawn mower blade to the highest setting, especially during dry weather.
  • When landscaping, look for plants, shrubs, & trees that use less water.  Use a layer of mulch to reduce evaporation.

IN THE BATHROOM


  • A toilet made before 1994 may use thousands of gallons more each year than newer models.  Consider installing a new toilet with the WaterSense label.
  • Use a "toilet dam," such as a small bottle filled with rocks.  Make sure it does not interfere with flushing mechanisms.  Do not use a brick.

FIND LEAKS & FIX THEM QUICKLY


  • Check faucets to make sure they don't leak or drip. If a faucet drips once a second, it can waste hundreds of gallons a month.
  • ​Remember to check outdoor spigots, as well.
  • Check each toilet for leaks by adding food coloring to the tank & waiting 15 minutes.  If the food coloring appears in the bowl before you flush, you have a leak.  Remember to flush so you don't stain the tank or bowl.
  • An unusually high bill may indicate a leak in your underground supply line.  The customer usually owns and is responsible for the part of the service line between the meter and the building.

AROUND THE HOME OR BUSINESS

  • Maintain your water heater following the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Wash only full loads of clothing & set the washing machine to the proper water level.
  • Insulate hot water pipes.
  • Look for water-efficient filtration or softening systems.
  • Energy-efficient appliances are likely to be water-efficient, too.
  • Know where your master shut-off valve is located.  Be prepared to use it in case of a burst pipe or other emergency.