Lawns and gardens account for the vast majority of summertime water use. Keep your bill under control by following these easy tips:
- Use the Green Grass Gauge
The best way to determine your sprinkler system output is to use a Green Grass Gauge. You may also use a tuna can and a ruler to conduct the following test:
Place the Green Grass Gauge in an area of the lawn where it receives a typical amount of water.
Move the gauge around the lawn area between each watering cycle to help identify dry spots.
Do not place it under trees, shrubs, or other plantings.
If you want to water twice a week, use the 2-day a week watering recommendation, If you want to water 3 times a week, use the 3-day a week watering recommendation.
Run the sprinklers until the Green Grass Gauge is filled to the weekly watering recommendation on the Eugene Water & Electric Board website.
- Emptying the gauge between each watering cycle will help you know if you are watering the recommended amount each time the sprinkler is run.
Regional Water Conservation Partnership
Since the mid-1980s, the Rainbow Water District, Springfield Utility Board (SUB), and Eugene Water & Electric Board have co-published water quality brochures educating all water customers in the region about what they can do to protect their water quality through cross-connection control.
The three utilities are continuing this customer communication partnership by co-distributing the Green Grass Gauge to provide customers with a tool to help them use water wisely.
- Water your lawn at the best times. Watering when water demand is high (before work in the morning or in the early evening) can reduce sprinkler system performance due to lower water pressure, resulting in poorly distributed water across your landscape. Set your sprinkler times to the “green zones” of best performance times (9 p.m. to 3 a.m.) or good performance times (9 a.m. to 3 p.m.).
- Check automated sprinkler systems to make sure they’re not overwatering or watering unwanted areas. Also, check to make sure the system is not leaking and wasting water. If you see soggy areas along buried irrigation lines or near sprinkler heads, you may have a problem.
- Position your sprinklers to avoid watering sidewalks, driveways, and other paved areas.
- Set your lawnmower blades one notch higher since longer grass means less evaporation. In very dry weather, leave the grass clippings in your yard to retain moisture and protect your grass from the heat.
- Check for leaks in pipes, hoses, faucets, fixtures, and couplings. A faucet leaking one drop of water per second wastes 60 gallons of water per week, or almost 200 gallons in a month.