Water Wise Tips

Saving water is an important step in making sure there is enough water now and for future generations. Reducing water use inside and outside our homes is really important. Please take a moment to review the following water wise tips to help save our most precious resource – WATER!

Here’s how you can help:
Indoor Tips

*Prevent water waste by checking for leaks in the kitchen, bathroom and laundry areas. Look for worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves and fix as soon as possible.


  1. While waiting for the tap water to heat up, capture the cool water in a bucket to use later for cooking or watering plants. Saves 2 or more gallons per minute.
  2. Collect the water you use while rinsing fruit and vegetables or wash them in a small pan of water instead of running the tap. Use leftover water to water plants.
  3. Don’t use running water to thaw food. Defrost food in the refrigerator.
  4. Fill a pitcher of tap water and place it in your refrigerator. This will save running tap water while it cools.
  5. If you accidentally drop ice cubes, don’t throw them in the sink. Drop them in a house plant instead.
  6. Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Instead place unwanted food items in the garbage.
  7. Scrape dirty dishes and/or pans instead of running water to rinse them off before placing them in the dishwasher.
  8. Run the dishwasher only when full to save water and energy. Install a water- and energy-efficient dishwasher. Saves 3 to 8 gallons per load.
  9. Wash dishes in a plastic bowl in the sink and use that water on your plants.
  10. Instead of throwing ice into your sink, use it on plants or in your garden.
  11. Serve meals from pots instead of a serving dish. Saves washing an extra dish.


  1. Turn off the tap when brushing teeth, washing your face or shaving. Saves 2 gallons or more per minute.
  2. Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor. Save: Up to 300 gallons a month.
  3. When washing your hands, turn the water off while you lather.
  4. Check for toilet leaks. You can pick up a toilet dye tab at ETWD or put several drops of food coloring (do not use red food dye) in your toilet tank. If the color seeps into the bowl without flushing, there is a leak. Replacing the toilet flapper valve will most likely fix the leak. Saves thousands of gallons per year.
  5. Don’t use the toilet as a wastebasket. Depending on your toilet you can save from 1.08 to 6 gallons per flush.
  6. Install a high-efficiency or premium high efficiency toilet. Saves 38 gallons per toilet per day.
  7. Take 5 minute showers instead of 10 minute showers. Save 2.5 gallons per minute.
  8. Turn off the water while washing your hair. Save: Up to 150 gallons a month.
  9. Recycle your shower water by capturing that water in a bucket and use to water plants.
  10. Take a (short) shower instead of a bath. A bathtub can use up to 70 gallons or more of water.
  11. Fill bathtubs halfway or less when giving children a bath.
  12. Install low-flow showerheads. Saves 2.5 Gallons per minute or 750 gallons per month.


    1. Wash only full loads of laundry in the washing machine. Save water and energy. Saves 30 gallons per load.
    2. Install a water-efficient clothes washer.

For more water saving tips, please visit:





Outdoor Tips
*Prevent water waste by checking for leaks in the irrigation system like broken sprinkler heads and other leaking valves and fix as soon as possible.

*During drought conditions – please follow current ETWD guidelines listed under the drought section.

  1. When it is raining, turn your irrigation system off and for at least 48 hours after.
  2. Water early in the morning or later in the evening when temperatures are cooler. ETWD’s Permanent Mandatory Conservation Measures restrict watering between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
  3. Use a broom instead of a hose to clean driveways, sidewalks and patios. Saves up to 150 gallons each time.
  4. Water deeply but less frequently to create healthier and stronger landscapes.
  5. Don’t overwater – create a customized watering schedule. Southern California residents can use the following Watering Index and Watering Calculator to estimate the correct amount of water to give your landscape or garden every week during normal supply conditions. Link to http://www.bewaterwise.com/calculator.html
  6. Check your sprinkler system frequently and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street. Save: 15-12 gallons/each time you water
  7. Check your sprinkler system for leaks, overspray and broken sprinkler heads and repair promptly. Saves up to 500 gallons per month
  8. Use an automatic shutoff nozzle on your hose, a bucket and a sponge to wash your vehicle. Saves 150 gallons each time.
  9. Use a carwash that recycles water.
  10. Retrofit your irrigation system with water efficient technology like rotating nozzles, drip irrigation.
  11. Install a smart sprinkler controller that adjusts watering based on weather, soil type, amount of shade and plant type. Saves up to 40 gallons per day.
  12. Replace high water using plants with native, drought-resistant plants. These plants are better suited for southern California’s semi-arid environment and require very little water. Saves 30- 60 gallons/each time you water/1,000 sq. ft.
  13. Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants to reduce evaporation and keep the soil cool. Organic mulch also improves the soil and prevents weeds. Saves hundreds of gallons per month.

For more water saving tips, please visit:





Water Use for Common Household Activities

Brushing Teeth: 3 gallons per day

Shower: 40 gallons/10 minutes
Bath: 20 gallons
Toilet: 28 gallons/day/person
Clothes Washer: 45 gallons/load
Cooking: 5 gallons/day dishwasher: 15 gallons/load
Landscape: 350 gallons/day
Hosing Driveway: 150 gallons
Car Washing: 150 gallons

Ways to Save Water
Lets Get Smart LogoHave you ever been interested in knowing what you can do to save water, but weren’t sure how to go about it? Well, here are some tips to help you out. While all of the tips won’t apply, most will be helpful in saving our most precious resource— WATER! Water your lawn only when it needs it. Step on your grass and if it springs back when you lift your foot, it doesn’t need water. Saves 750 to 1500 gallons per month.

Report-leakageFix or report leaky faucets, running toilets, or sprinkler problems. Saves at least 20 gallons per day for every leak.
car-washDon’t run the hose while washing your car. Use a bucket of water and a quick hose rinse at the end. Saves 150 gallons each time.
Save-Shower-FlushInstall water-saving shower heads and Ultra Low-Flush Toilets. Saves 500 to 800 gallons per month.
washing-machineRun only full loads in the washing machine and dishwasher. Saves 300 to 800 gallons per month.
clockShorten your shower time. Even a one or two-minute reduction can save up to 700 gallons per month.
car-washUse a broom instead of a hose to clean driveways and sidewalks. Saves 150 gallons or more each time.
Not-as-wastebasketDon’t use your toilet as an ashtray or wastebasket. Saves 400 to 600 gallons per month.
Capture-Tap-WaterCapture tap water. While you wait for hot water to come through the pipes, catch the flow in a watering can and use later on houseplants or your garden. Saves 200 to 300 gallons a month.
Bottle-Drinking-WaterKeep a bottle of drinking water in the refrigerator. This beats the wasteful habit of running tap water to cool it for drinking. Saves 200 to 300 gallons a month.