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Water Conservation Techniques For Use During Droughts

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Using water efficiently is always important, but doing so becomes vital during a drought. Every year, some part of North America experiences a drought. In 2012, drought struck 65 percent of the country. California has been in the throes of a drought for several years.

Obey all Water Restrictions

During a drought, the water utility or some other regional authority is going to impose restrictions on water use in order to conserve water. Such rules are likely to include watering the garden and/or lawn only during certain times of the day, not washing your car and so forth. The rules are intended to insure that there is enough water available to fight fires and perform other vital functions that help everybody. They will be lifted when the drought ends.

Check For Leaks

An easy way to conserve water during a drought is to make sure all the plumbing in your house or apartment is working properly. A specialist from Always Plumbing & Heating says a leaky faucet or cracked pipe can waste a lot of water, so if you find you’re using more than you intend, check around the house for even the smallest of leaks.

Upgrade Your Fixtures

If you have the money, renovating the bathroom or kitchen may prove to be a good investment. The EPA has established a program called WaterSense to help people find products and services that conserve water. To earn the WaterSense label, which looks like a blue water drop overlaid with a green leaf, a service or product must be at least 20 percent more efficient at using water without sacrificing performance. WaterSense products include toilets, showerheads, and faucets. In some states, it's possible to get a rebate for buying a WaterSense product.

Make Your Garden and Lawn More Drought-Resistant

As the water utility will impose restrictions on watering lawns or gardens, getting plants that can tolerate arid conditions will make abiding by the rules less onerous. The EPA recommends choosing native plants for any new landscaping, for they will be accustomed to the climate and need less fertilizer than exotic plants will. Native plants are also more resistant to local pests or diseases than are non-natives.

Plant Less Grass

Grass generally needs more water than many other plants. Consequently, properties with big lawns use more water than do properties covered with a variety of other plants. Use grass only for areas like a playground where it has a useful purpose and plant groundcovers elsewhere. Choose native or drought-resistant grasses.

Some of the above techniques are simple and inexpensive, while others will take more effort and/or money. But they will all save water and money over the long haul.

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