During the seemingly never-ending drought in California, the city of Sacramento issued a policy that limited the number of weekdays residents could water their lawns. This policy allows residents and businesses to water two days per week, and encourages them to be mindful of the weather (e.g. if it’s going to rain, skip watering that day) and also mindful of the time of day they are watering.

Even though California has gotten record levels of rain in 2017, we’re not going to jump the gun and remove all drought restrictions just yet. And, even if California is declared to be out of the drought, conserving water is always good practice – both for the environment, and for your monthly water bills. So what are some of our favorite water saving tips for Sacramento? Check out our list below.

1.    Two day-per-week watering

We definitely support Sacramento’s 2 day per week watering proposal (heads up: it starts March 12th this year!) Watering days are staggered based on your home or business address, with odd numbered addresses watering on Tuesday and Saturday and even numbered addresses watering on Wednesday and Sunday. These staggered watering days ensure that everyone takes turns and that there aren’t weekdays when water use spikes as everyone scrambles to get their watering in.

2.    Retrofit your water meter

Sacramento has a Water Meter Retrofit Plan, which states that all homes and connections will have water meters by 2025. How is this helpful in your efforts to conserve water? With a water meter installed, you can more accurately gauge your water usage on a daily or even hourly basis. Are you using a lot of water during the hottest part of the day? Try taking showers and running the sprinklers in the evening or morning to cut down on your water rates and also decrease the amount of water that evaporates in the hot sun.

3.    Set up a My Water account

With every newly retrofitted or installed water meter comes a My Water account. This useful online service lets you gain detailed views and reports on your water usage, which also helps you in discovering ways to cut down on water use and use water more efficiently.

4.    Participate in Drought Busters

No one wants to be a tattle tale – but we’re serious when it comes to conserving water in Sacramento. If you notice someone in your neighborhood not adhering to the two day per week watering schedule, or see that they’re watering during the hottest parts of the day or leaving their sprinklers on for too long, we want to hear about it. Call the city office at (916) 264-5011 or report the misuse via our 311 app.

5.    Plant drought resistant plants

Whether you plant California natives or otherwise, drought resistant plants will greatly reduce the amount of water you need to use for your yard or garden. There are many resources online to help you plant water-conserving greenery (and a lot of rebate offers to help you relandscape, too!).

6.    Check out a water conservation workshopLawn being watered for second time this week, based on Sacramento watering tips by Low Flow Sprinkler Pros.

Water conservation workshops in Sacramento are available on a regular basis, and you can easily sign up online. These workshops are geared towards individuals who want to learn more about our water-conservation programs, but can also be used to waive your first fine if you were caught violated the city water conservation ordinance. Make sure to sign up early and check to see if the workshop has been cancelled if not enough individuals signed up.

7.    Use a smart sprinkler controller

What’s the easiest way to ensure that you adhere to Sacramento’s two days per week watering ordinance? Get a smart controller for your sprinklers! You can adjust your smart controller so it only waters on your designated days, and so that it waters in the early morning before it gets too hot outside. Don’t just assume that because you set the programming at the start of the summer that you don’t have to touch it again, though. Monitor the weather and adjust the timing on your smart controller as needed for optimum water conservation. Additionally, consider getting a rain sensor added to your setup so the smart controller skips watering for a few days if it detects enough moisture in the soil.

What are your favorite Sacramento water saving tips? We want to hear what habits you’ve adopted to help you use less water for your home or business. Leave a comment below!