Water Saving Tip: Wash Your Laundry with COLD Water

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WATER SAVING TIP: Wash your laundry with cold water whenever possible. To save water, try to wash full loads or, if you must wash a partial load, reduce the level of water appropriately.  Hot water heating accounts for about 90 percent of the energy your machine uses to wash clothes — only 10 percent goes to electricity used by the washer motor. Depending on the clothes and local water quality (hardness), many homeowners can effectively do laundry exclusively with cold water, using cold water laundry detergents. Switching to cold water can save the average household more than $40 annually (with an electric water heater) and more than $30 annually (with a gas water heater). Washing full loads can save you more than 3,400 gallons of water each year.

-excerpt from EnergyStar.gov

Water Saving Tip: Group Plants with similar watering needs in the same area

Ventura Lawn

The Environmental Protection Agency indicates the average American household uses 320 gallons of water per day, about 30% of which is devoted to outdoor use.  As much as 50% of the water we use outdoors is wasted by inefficient watering methods and systems.

One great TIP to conserve water in your landscape is to group plants with similar watering needs in the same area.  To find out more about the plants pictured above, CLICK HERE to visit the Ventura Water Saving Plant Interactive Site.

Also REGISTER for the FREE Water Wise Gardening Class Series starting March 1, 2014.  Attend one free class or attend them all, CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

Holiday WATER Saving Ideas

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During the holidays, family and friends gather for celebrations and that translates into more cooking and entertaining, more laundry,  more dishes, and using more water!     Here are some helpful tips from WaterSense and the Environmental Protection Agency that will help you ENJOY the season and SAVE WATER!

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In the kitchen

Put it a plug in it. It’s a good rule of thumb to plug the drain when washing dishes in the sink or use a plastic wash basin filled with soapy water. This will significantly reduce the amount of water you waste by letting the tap run while you’re scrubbing holiday dishes.

Load it up! Don’t just fill up your guests this season—fill up your dishwasher. According to ENERGY STAR, dishwashers built before 1994 can use as much as 10 gallons of water per cycle. Ensuring your dishwasher is fully loaded each time you run it decreases the number of loads you’re doing and water you’re wasting.

Scrape the scraps. When plates return to the kitchen with food scraps on them, be water-efficient by scraping or wiping them off rather than rinsing every particle away with water.

Pour a pitcher full of savings. Instead of letting the faucet run until the water is cool, save water by filling a pitcher with water and storing it in the fridge. An ice-cold pitcher of water makes a great addition to your holiday table.

Let the fridge do the work. Instead of running hot water over frozen foods, thaw them out in the fridge overnight. Not only will you cut your water use, but you’ll also save the energy required to heat the water.

Give your garbage disposal a holiday. Most garbage disposal systems use water to break down and dispose of wastes, which can impact your household’s water use. This season, consider adding food wastes to a compost pile instead of tossing them down the garbage disposal.

To learn more water-saving tips to use this holiday season and how to save water all year, visit the WaterSense Be the Change page.

From EPA.gov/WaterSense

Water Saving Ideas for the upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday

thanksgiv-dayThis year the Thanksgiving holiday falls on November 28.  During the season, we celebrate and give thanks for our family, friends, community, and the wonderful harvest bounty.

While we’re enjoying the season, and all it’s wonderful entertaining, please remember these water saving tips:

•Don’t let the water flow when washing the dishes.  If you have a two sided sink, fill one side with soapy water (or if you don’t have a two sided sink use a plastic wash basin) to rinse and/or wash dishes.  This will significantly reduce the amount of water you use.

•According to Energy Star, dishwashers that date to 1994 and earlier can use as much as 10 gallons of water per cycle.

•Always make sure you run your dishwashers ONLY when FULL.

•When you drink tap — don’t let the water run cold.  Fill a pitcher with water and then place in the refrigerator to cool.

•Don’t run hot water over frozen foods in the sink to defrost them.  Either use a microwave and/or defrost them in the refrigerator overnight.

•Put all your food scraps into a compost pile vs. putting them down the garbage disposal.

•When doing laundry, wash your clothes in COLD WATER using a cold-water detergent whenever you can. (Switching your temperature from hot to cold can cut a load’s energy use in half).

•ONLY do laundry when you have a FULL load.

Find other water saving tips at:  http://www.epa.gov/watersense/

Did you know what you EAT impacts Water Conservation?

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Did you know that what you EAT can impact WATER SAVINGS?  Here are some statistics from National Geographic.

•It takes approximately 1,000 gallons of water per day to produce the average American diet.  This is more than the global average water footprint of 900 gallons per person per day for diet, household use, transportation, energy and consumption of material goods.

•Eat less meat and dairy is a way slim down your water footprint.  It takes a lot of water and energy to process these products.  Choose grass-fed beef (vs. grain-fed) whenever possible because grass-fed  utilizes less water and energy.

•A serving of poultry costs approximately 90 gallons of water to produce.  When you BUY LOCAL, you save on transportation and other costs (financially and environmentally).

•On average, a vegan, a person who doesn’t eat meat or dairy indirectly consumes nearly 600 gallons of water per day LESS than a person following the average American diet.

•A cup of coffee takes 55 gallons of water to make, with most of that water used to grow the coffee beans.

So, GREEN YOUR DIET! 

Visit:  VenturaWater.net and VenturaWater.org

Water Saving Tips at the Office

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Great Water Saving Ideas for Commercial Business

In the Restroom

•The restroom is the biggest source of water waste commercially.  While automatic-flushing toilets are great, manual flushing toilets actually use less water.  Why?  Because they don’t have triggers that account for unnecessary flushing.  Every accidental flush wastes 1.6 gallons of water.

•Choose sinks with handles that can  be turned on and off manually, or sinks with automatic sensors that click off as soon as hands are removed from the sensor area.  Never use sinks with the push-button faucet that slowly turns itself off.

•If you already have automatic toilets and sinks installed, call your service technician and ask for sensor adjustments and make sure the sensors do not go off too frequently; activating only when you want them too.

Water Heaters

•Hot water takes energy, install a water feed pump.  The faster your water heats, the less water is wasted waiting for the water to get to the heated temperature that is preferred. (Aim for a maximum temperature around 120 degress F).

Office Kitchen

•Install an energy-efficient dishwasher in the office kitchen.   Using a high quality dishwasher (vs. doing dishes by hand), actually saves water.   Remember to only run the dishwasher when fully loaded.

SAVING WATER SAVES OUR PLANET AND SAVES YOU MONEY!

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Easy Water Saving Tips at the Kitchen Sink!

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•Rinse fruits and veggies in a bowl of water vs. under a running faucet.

•Reuse water from boiling or steaming pasta and vegetables to water plants as soon as the water cools.

•If you finish a cold drink and have ice cubes left over, put the ice in planters or flower pots.

•Only run the washing machine and dishwasher when you have full loads.

•When washing your hands, don’t let the water run while you’re lathering up your hands with soap.

•Fix any leaks or malfunctions immediately to avoid more costly repairs, more money spent on your water bill and damage.

Visit:  VenturaWater.net and VenturaWater.org

Did You Know? Water Use in Daily Life

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The average American family uses more than 300 gallons of water per day at home. Roughly 70 percent of this use occurs indoors. Nationally, outdoor water use accounts for 30 percent of household use yet can be much higher in drier parts of the country and in more water-intensive landscapes. For example, the arid West has some of the highest per capita residential water use because of landscape irrigation.

Find out more WATER FACTS and WATER USE from EPA.gov

Visit:  VenturaWater.net and VenturaWater.org

5 Cool Outdoor Water-Saving Tips!

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When the weather is hot, take note of these cool summer water-saving tips!

•Use a Pool Cover.   It takes about 19,000 gallons of water to fill the average swimming pool, and left uncovered, pool water can evaporate at a rate of about 1,000 gallons a month!  So, cover your pool when not in use and save gallons of water from evaporating.  You’ll also save on pool cleaning!

•Don’t let the hose run.  When you’re outside watering the lawn or gardening, get a squeeze (pistol grip) nozzle for your hose so you don’t have to let water run.  According to the EPA, nationwide, landscape irrigation is estimated to account for nearly one-third of all residential water use, totalling 9 billion gallons per day.   Save on this most precious natural resource.  In Ventura, currently all water comes from local resources.  Let’s keep it that way!

•Pack your own bottle.  When you’re out of the house, travel with your own water bottle filled with tap water from home.  It’s more economical, saves on the environment, and is healthier for you.  Water from the tap is constantly monitored and held to a higher standard.

•Set your lawn mower one notch higher.  Longer grass means less evaporation.  Longer lawns are also better for your grass and helps prevents weeds from growing.

•Avoid the use of misters.  Water evaporates almost immediately in hot weather.  Instead, reach for a cool drink!

Visit:  VenturaWater.org and VenturaWater.net