– The San Luis Obispo City Utilities Department encourages residents to adopt water-saving practices to conserve water and to save some money on utilities bills this winter. Here are the top five water conservation tips to promote sustainable water use during the colder months.
Reduce or eliminate outdoor water use: Residential water customers can save money on their household sewer bills all year by reducing or eliminating outdoor water use during the winter. Residential wastewater (sewer) bills are capped based on the water used during the months of December, January, and February so be sure to slow the flow during this time. A maximum is set for residential sewer charges using the average water usage during these three months.
Install a smart irrigation controller: Cooler weather slows down plant growth. This eliminates the need for additional water from irrigation systems. To help with conserving water, the City of SLO has partnered with Rachio to provide single-family residential water customers with discounts on their 8-zone and 16-zone Rachio Smart Irrigation Controllers. These weather-based devices automatically adjust irrigation schedules based on current local weather conditions.
Turn toilets off at the valve before leaving town: The most common indoor water leak is a running toilet. Fully running toilets can consume two gallons of water per minute. In the year 2022, there was an increase of running toilets while people were away for the holidays. To prevent a toilet from running while out of town, the utilities department recommends people check for leaks before leaving or even turning the water off at the valve.
Upgrade to more water-efficient toilets: As mentioned above, toilets are often the main source of water used in a home or business. By replacing old, inefficient toilets with WaterSense-labeled models, the average family is estimated to reduce water used for toilets by 20-60%. In fact, customers that have utilized the toilet rebate program have seen an average water savings of over 10% each month. All City of San Luis Obispo water customers are eligible for up to four $100 rebates for replacing older, less-water-efficient toilets with 1.28 gallons per flush (GPF) WaterSense-certified toilets.
Install efficient fixtures indoors: A standard water faucet or shower head can use 2-4 gallons of water per minute. Low-flow fixtures can reduce that to as low as half a gallon per minute. Upgrading to high efficiency plumbing fixtures can significantly reduce your home’s water consumption, lower water bills, and have a positive impact on the environment.
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