Conservation Tip: Save Water Outdoors

Sprinklers water the lawn.

When sprinklers run during the hottest hours of the day, more of the water evaporates than if the sprinklers run during nighttime hours.

In the interest of helping our readers reduce energy and water waste, Sustainable Utah will publish weekly conservation tips contributed by the Student Energy Ambassadors, a program funded by Rocky Mountain Power and Questar Gas.

By the Student Energy Ambassadors

With summer fast approaching and the flowers blooming, most of us will want to get outside as much as possible. But don’t forget about your own home while you’re out and about—in fact, Utah has one of the highest per capita domestic water use rates in the country. Seventy percent of Utah’s residential water is used outside. Each person’s water use is connected to the volume of nearby lakes and rivers, which provide support for 80 percent of the state’s wildlife, according to the Utah Rivers Council.

Here are a five ways you can lower your outdoor water usage.

  1. Calculate your water footprint! The Utah Rivers Council, with support from the Sustainable Campus Initiative Fund, created BluePrint, which helps Utah residents better understand their water use.
  2. Fix your sprinkler systems! If they are leaking, spraying on the sidewalk, or otherwise, get them fixed.
  3. Don’t water between the hours of 10am to 6pm—it is the hottest time of day, so more water evaporates during these hours.
  4. If you have gardens, use a drip irrigation system, and use mulch to reduce soil evaporation.
  5. According to Utah law, you are allowed to store rainwater in up to two 100-gallon containers without registering for a permit. You can use this water for any outside application, thereby reducing both your water bill and also saving water.

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