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Water Saving Tips

Effective water conservation and efficiency practices can help extend the water supply and meet the water demand expectations well into the future.

Here are some helpful tips to follow inside — and outside — your home.

For more information on water use efficiency, visit the following websites:

For tips on landscaping, see Landscape Guidelines. The DWP also holds residential landscaping classes. The handouts from these classes are in the publications section of this site.


  • Conserve In the Home
  • Conserve Outside the Home

Water Conservation in the Home

water drain
  • Fix faucet leaks
    A leaky faucet can waste up to two gallons of water per day. Make sure your faucets are turned completely off and repair any leaky faucets.
  • Fix toilet leaks
    Put a few drops of food coloring into your toilet tank. If after fifteen minutes the color appears in the bowl, your toilet has a water-wasting leak. Check your toilet for leaks regularly. Learn more about checking leaky toilets...
  • Reduce the water in your toilet tank
    If you don't have a low flow toilet, you can still reduce toilet water use by up to 20% by placing a half-gallon jug filled with water or sand in your toilet tank.
  • Don't use your toilet as a trashcan
    One unnecessary flush per day wastes up to 1,000 gallons of water over the course of a year.
  • Put a low-flow showerhead in your shower
    This can reduce the amount of water you use in the shower by 50%. We have them available for FREE - call us at (951) 736-2234.
  • Install a low-flow aerator in your faucet
    Using an inexpensive, low-flow aerator in your sink can conserve up to six gallons of water per minute. We have them available for FREE - call us at (951) 736-2234.
  • Run a full load
    Wait until you have a full load of dishes or clothes before running the dishwasher or washing machine.

Water Conservation Outside the Home

Most water is used outside of the home - mainly to irrigate landscaping.

  • Don't just landscape - xeriscape.
    Xeriscape gardening methods can reduce your water usage by up to 40%. To xeriscape, practice the following:
    - Use mulch to reduce evaporation
    - Till your soil so it absorbs more water
    - Use turf sparingly and only when necessary
    - Choose native plants that use less water
    - Raise the height of your lawnmower
  • Water before 10 a.m.
    Up to 1/3 of the water from a sprinkler can be lost to evaporation in the heat and wind.
  • Use large-drop sprinklers
    Reduce water evaporation when you water your yard by using sprinklers that produce large drops rather than fine mists.
  • Water lawns deeply and infrequently
    Most lawns are watered too often and too much. A good rule of thumb is to water for only 15 minutes a day, three times a week in the summer and only once a week in the winter. If you currently water more than this, make changes gradually to allow root systems to adjust. Remember to turn off your sprinklers when it is raining.
  • Monitor your seasonal watering needs
    Gradually increase the amount you water during the spring season to help meet summer needs and lower it in the fall and winter months.
  • Don't water the sidewalk or street
    Check your sprinklers monthly and adjust any that are watering the street or sidewalk. Water down the gutter is money down the drain.
  • Use drip irrigation to soak your shrubs and flower beds
    For shrubs and flower beds, drip irrigation or "soaker hoses" release water slowly near plant roots, where it is needed. Most trees and shrubs require deeper but less frequent watering - usually only once a month.
  • Wash your car, not the driveway
    When washing your car, use a hose with a shut-off nozzle. We have them available for free - call us at
    (951) 736-2234.
  • Replace turf grass
    Consider installing water-saving native plants and landscaping in place of turf areas.
  • Watering CalculatorWatering Calculator
    Use this handy calculator to work out the ideal watering schedule for your garden.
  • California Sprinkler Adjustment Notification System (CSANS)
    Subscribe here to receive free sprinkler adjustment reminder emails with optimal percentages.