There are a number of ways to save water, and they all start with you.
When washing dishes by hand, don't let the water run while rinsing. Fill one sink with wash water and the other with rinse water.
Some refrigerators, air conditioners and ice-makers are cooled with wasted flows of water. Consider upgrading with air-cooled appliances for significant water savings.
Adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street.
Run your clothes washer and dishwasher only when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.
Choose shrubs and groundcovers instead of turf for hard-to-water areas such as steep slopes and isolated strips.
Install covers on pools and spas and check for leaks around your pumps.
Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Compost vegetable food waste instead and save gallons every time.
When cleaning out fish tanks, give the nutrient-rich water to your plants.
Use sprinklers for large areas of grass. Water small patches by hand to avoid waste.
Put food coloring in your toilet tank. If it seeps into the toilet bowl without flushing, you have a leak. Fixing it can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.
When running a bath, plug the tub before turning the water on, then adjust the temperature as the tub fills up.
Walkways and patios provide space that doesn't ever need to be watered. These useful "rooms" can also add value to your property.
Collect water from your roof to water your garden.
Designate one glass for your drinking water each day or refill a water bottle. This will cut down on the number of glasses to wash.
Rather than following a set watering schedule, check for soil moisture two to three inches below the surface before watering.
Install a rain sensor on your irrigation controller so your system won't run when it's raining.
Don't use running water to thaw food. Defrost food in the refrigerator for water efficiency and food safety.
Use drip irrigation for shrubs and trees to apply water directly to the roots where it's needed.
Grab a wrench and fix that leaky faucet. It's simple, inexpensive, and you can save 140 gallons a week.
Reduce the amount of lawn in your yard by planting shrubs and ground covers appropriate to your site and region.
When doing laundry, match the water level to the size of the load.
Teach your children to turn off faucets tightly after each use.
Remember to check your sprinkler system valves periodically for leaks and keep the sprinkler heads in good shape.