Ventura Water Customers Requested To Voluntarily Reduce Water Use By 10%
In response to historic dry conditions, Ventura Water began requesting customers to voluntarily reduce their water use by 10% in February 2014 as a proactive step to stretch diminishing water supplies. Due to the third year of dry conditions and the lack of normal winter rainfall:
- The water level of the Ventura River, a primary water supply during the rainy season, is very low and continues to drop.
- A number of groundwater wells have required urgent maintenance which is limiting our water supply operations. Also, the Fox Canyon Groundwater Management Agency approved an Emergency Ordinance in April that restricts extraction from groundwater basins, suspends the use of conservation credits, and reduces the City's allocation by six percent.
- Ventura’s other water supply, Lake Casitas is at less than 60% and we have been alerted that if the Lake drops to 50%, the Casitas Municipal Water District (operator of Lake Casitas) will begin allocating water. Without rain, this may happen in the fall of 2014.
- Have more questions?Read our Voluntary 10% Water Conservation FAQs
Read and print our Water Efficiency Brochure (English) and (Espanol).
- Como usar el agua eficientemente - ideas en Español.
Top Suggestions For Using Less Water
Reviewing your water bill is a good first step to understand how much water is being used. Another good source of information is the Home Water Works Calculator that will give you specific tips based on your individual household's water use.
Fixing leaks both indoors and outdoors is the easiest step to reduce water use. One leaking toilet can waste between 300 to 60,000 gallons per month and even a slow drip from a faucet can use 450 gallons per month. Outdoor leaks from irrigation systems are also responsible for a lot of water waste.
Lawns are commonly over-watered and there are a number of strategies customers can try to help their landscapes through the drought. The top recommendation is to reduce the number of watering minutes and times per week one step at a time and watch your landscape for signs of stress. You may be surprised at how little water it really needs.
If you have been considering alternative landscaping, such as native gardens or native grass or even synthetic lawns, then this may be a good time to make the switch. To learn more, sign up for our free Water Wise classes.
- If you were already considering converting your lawn into an Ocean Friendly or Water Wise garden, now is the time to Kill Your Lawn Naturally using a sheet mulching technique promoted by Surfrider Foundation.
- Allow your turf to grow twice as long. Longer, denser growth requires less water to maintain.
- Cut you watering time by one to two minutes per cycle and watch your landscape for stress. Adjust accordingly. This can save about 10% water use across the board.
- Also make sure your irrigation water doesn't run off during the run cycle. Break up cycles into shorter run times to avoid overspray and/or run-off.
- Test your water meter to ensure you don't have a leak. Turn off all the water in your home. Read your meter. Wait for a period of time; like 20 minutes and then read your meter again. If it moved, then you possibly have a leak.
- Upgrade current spray nozzles which are inefficient and can use up to 3 gallons per minute to conserving "rotator nozzles". All major irrigation supply companies sell these nozzles, which cost between $4-5 each and can save 20-30% water consumption, if installed properly and your timer is set appropriately.
- Save the water in a bucket or pitcher while you are waiting for it to heat up. This can amount to 5 to 10 gallons per day depending upon the size of the household. Reuse the water for your garden or to flush the toilet.
- Don't allow the water to run while washing dishes or brushing your teeth or shaving. This can save upwards of 10 gallons per day depending upon household size.
- Remember to wash only full loads in the dish washer and clothes washer.
- Don't hose of your driveway or sidewalk. Use a broom.
- Don't wash your car in the street. Go to a car wash that recycles its water. Or wash it on the lawn and reduce one run time on your irrigation clock.
- Put aerators on all your faucets. This can save up to 3 gallons per sink. The City provides these for free to residents. .
- Install a low-flow shower-head. The City also provides these for free to residents. Call 652-4501 or 667-6500.
- Even though it isn't raining; when we do have even a small rain event, like 1", you can capture that water in a rain barrel for later use. 1,000 sf of roof can shed up to 620 gallons of water in a 1" rain event. That's about 12 rain barrels! The City offers a 50% discount for rain barrels through Smith Pipe Supply.
- Mulch around your trees and shrubs and in your planter beds. Make sure you make a "doughnut" around the base of the trees to prevent rot. Mulch keeps the soil moist and can reduce weeds. The City offers free mulch at Cornucopia Gardens. You just need your own way to haul it off. The first pile on the right is available for all City residents. Cornucopia Gardens is located across from Community Park on Telephone Rd. just beyond Ramelli Drive.
By implementing these measures now, you can see a 10% reduction in your water use by the next billing period. Check out our "Drought-Proofing Your Landscape" section for more tips.
Casitas Municipal Water District
Casitas Municipal Water District provides approximately 1/3 of Ventura's water supply to customers who live within the Casitas district. This area includes Ventura's westside and midtown, generally west of Mills Road. Ventura Water customers who live in the Casitas District pay an assessment annually through their property taxes.
These customers are eligible for free water surveys and rebates offered by Casitas. For more information, call (805) 649-2251 ext. 110 or visit www.casitaswater.org.
For customers who live outside their district boundaries, please call (805) 652-4501 to find out what services are available to you.
How can I be more efficient?
The following are a few websites that provide information and resources to help you conserve water in your home:
Water Efficiency Plan (pdf 1172KB)
Amended 2010 Urban Water Management Plan (pdf 24,289KB)