SAVING WATER

Fun Water Facts -    2014_Artwork_for_Website_6_WATER

  • Since 1950 the U.S. Population has doubled. The U.S. water consumption during this same time frame has tripled.
  • Today, the average person uses 180 gallons of water per day.
  • The average Carmel Household uses 6,000 gallons of water a month during the winter and 22,000 gallons of water a month during the summer to water lawns. See Lawn Watering Tips.
  • In 2008, the City of Carmel used roughly three billion gallons of water. The energy used to pump and treat all this water and sewage produced over 26 million lbs. of CO2 (13,000 tons of CO2).

So what can you do to reduce your carbon footprint?

If you're not using it, shut it OFF!

  • Letting your faucet run for five minutes uses about as much energy as letting a 60-watt light bulb run for 14 hours.
  • If you turn off the water while you brush your teeth, you will save two gallons a minute.  This equates to over 10,400 gallons a year for a family of four.

Fix Your Leaks

  • Did you know that a leak of one drop per second can waste up to 2,400 gallons a year?
  • A leaky toilet can waste as much as 36,500 gallons of water per year.   About 20% of all toilets leak.
  • Most of Carmel's water shut off values are located in the meter pit in the ground in front of the home.   This is important to know in case you have a pipe burst and you need to shut off the water.

An Easy Way to Use Less

  • Low-flow shower heads are inexpensive, easy to install, and can save your family more than 26,000 gallons of water a year.

Lawn Watering Tips

  • Did you know that established lawns only need 1" of water a week?  Here's a helpful hint. Buy a rain gauge to track how much rain or irrigation your yard receives.  Or use an empty tuna can to see how much water is applied during a sprinkling.
  • Adjust your lawnmower to cut grass to a height of three inches or more. Taller grass encourages deeper roots and shades the soil to reduce moisture loss.
  • Aerate your lawn. Punch holes in your lawn about six inches apart so water will reach the roots rather than run off the surface.
  • While fertilizers promote plant growth, they also increase water consumption. Apply the minimum amount of fertilizer needed.
  • Use sprinklers that throw big drops of water close to the ground.  Smaller drops of water and mist often evaporate before they hit the ground. Avoid watering your lawn on windy days.
  • Water your lawn only during the early morning or late at night to avoid excess evaporation.
  • Water your lawn only when needed.  You can tell when it is needed by simply walking across your lawn.  If you leave footprints, it is time to water.
  • Plant native landscaping species suited to central Indiana. Ask your local nursery for tree, shrub, flower and grass species that require less water.
  • Choose drought-tolerant plants when landscaping. Group plants with similar water needs together.
  • Use mulch to retain moisture in the soil.  Mulch also helps control weeds that compete with landscape plants for water.
  • Whether you want to help conserve water, save money or you just don't have the time to water your lawn regularly, letting your grass go dormant (brown) during the hottest months of the year can help.  Read more: How to save water with a sleeping lawn.
  • For more information, check out the Purdue Extension on lawn maintenance.