How can you reduce your water demand at home?
To support residents who wish to reduce their outdoor water demand, the District is offering free hose timers to residents who use a manual sprinkler.
10 Ways to Conserve Outdoors
- Use a Hose Timer. A hose timer connects to your outside tap and turns off your sprinklers automatically after a set amount of time. Watering too much is one of the major ways your community uses water. A hose timer or rain sensor can significantly reduce the amount of water you use.
- Let Grass Grow. Let grass grow to a height of 2 1/2 centimetres. Taller grass shades new growth and reduces evaporation.
- Say No to Nitrogen. Using high-nitrogen fertilizers require a lot of water in order for them to work, and they only temporarily stimulate new growth.
- Say Yes to Organics. In place of nitrogen, top-dressing lawns annually with compost or high-quality topsoil will increase nutrients in the soil and improve its water-holding capacity.
- Use Grass Clippings. Grass clippings are a valuable organic source of nutrients, especially nitrogen, so leave them on the lawn.
- Aerate. Lawns can become compacted over time. Aerating removes cores of soil and turf from the lawn, allowing water, nutrients and oxygen to penetrate the soil.
- Avoid Evaporation. Water over smaller areas: When a sprinkler is set to cover a large area, up to half the water could be lost to evaporation before it even hits the ground.
- Mulch. Mulch acts as a protective cover around plants. It keeps soil cool and moist and discourages weed growth. Organic mulches such as straw, leaf, bark or wood chips work best. Avoid rocks as they retain heat, increasing the need for water.
- Reduce Turf Areas. Replace water-thirsty grass with decking or mulched gardens of drought-tolerant plants.
- Plant Wisely. Group plants according to their watering needs. Consider plant species that are indigenous to the area. They have adapted to local climate conditions and require little water to grow.
10 Ways to Conserve Indoors
- Install a Low-flow Toilet. Toilets are the biggest water users in the home. Replacing old, water-guzzling toilets with newer, efficient models can save as much as 25 per cent.
- Drip, Dribble, Drool. Dripping taps waste a lot of water. Turn off taps tightly and make sure they don't leak. If your toilet "hisses" when it's not in use, it might have a leak between the tank and the bowl. To find out, put a drop of food colouring in the toilet tank and wait a few minutes. If, without flushing, the colour starts to appear in the bowl, you have a leak.
- Install Faucet Aerators. Aerators mix air with water, reducing the flow by about six litres per minute while still maintaining pressure.
- Turn off the Tap. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth and shaving.
- Install Low-flow Shower Heads. Reduce water use and save on the cost of heating water by installing a low-flow shower head with an adjustable spray.
- Have Shorter Showers. Put a timer in the bathroom and set it for five minutes. When it goes off - time's up!
- Be Water Smart With Your Dishwasher. Run your dishwasher only when it's full. If you only have a few dishes to wash, it's more efficient to wash them by hand.
- Don't Flush Garbage. Flushing garbage is a waste of water. Instead, use a garbage can and compost when possible.
- Install an Efficient Washing Machine. These use 40 per cent less water and 50 per cent less energy than traditional machines. They also spin out more moisture than traditional washing machines, so less energy is required to dry clothes.
- Learn the Levels. If your washing machine allows, set the water level so it's appropriate for different-sized loads
Click here for further information regarding water conservation.
How will you read my meter?
The meters are read remotely, and each meter puts out a pulse. These pulses are approximately 950 MHz, and last for 0.003 second each minute. That is equal to 4.32 seconds per day, or 130 seconds per month from each meter.
What if there's a problem with my meter? What if I have a leak?
If there is an error in reading your meter, or if you've had a leak in the last month, we will receive notification when reading the meters. After the alarm is found, we will notify you via a letter.
You can view your historical water consumption by simply crosschecking your water meter serial number against the data in the yearly water usage reports located here.
When will I get a consumption based water bill?
This year, you will continue to receive a flat rate water bill. We are striving to assist all residents to reduce their water consumption as much as possible prior to the introduction of consumption-based billing. Once the District has collected and analysed at least one full year of water demand data from the universal metering program, we will begin the process of transitioning from flat-rate to consumption based bills. It is important to the District to get enough information before choosing the proper rate the first time. It is likely that you will receive a comparative data letter with no mention of a rate to give you some insight towards the water consumption at your household compared to the rest of Sparwood.
For more more information contact the Municipal Office at 250-425-6271.