Indoor water use

Water is essential to each of us every day. But it’s a limited resource, so we all need to rethink the way we use water on a daily basis. By following these water-saving tips inside your home, you can help save water every day.

Laundry room

  • Use the washing machine for full loads only to save water and energy.
  • Install a water-efficient clothes washer and save up to 16 gallons per load.
  • Washing dark clothes in cold water saves water and energy. It also helps your clothes retain their color.


  • Run the dishwasher only when full to save water and energy.
  • Install a water-and energy-efficient dishwasher. Save: 3 to 8 gallons per load.
  • Install aerators on the kitchen faucet to reduce flows to less than 1 gallon per minute.
  • When washing dishes by hand, don’t let the water run. Fill one basin with wash water and the other with rinse water.
  • Dishwashers typically use less water than washing dishes by hand.
  • If your dishwasher is new, cut back on rinsing. Newer models clean more thoroughly than older ones.
  • Soak pots and pans instead of letting the water run while you scrape them clean.
  • Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Instead, compost vegetable food waste and save gallons every time.
  • Wash your fruits and vegetables in a pan of water instead of running water from the tap.
  • Don’t use running water to thaw food. Defrost food in the refrigerator.
  • Keep a pitcher of drinking water in the refrigerator instead of running the tap.
  • Cook food in as little water as possible. This also helps it retain more nutrients.
  • Select the proper pan size for cooking. Large pans may require more cooking water than necessary.
  • If you accidentally drop ice cubes, don’t throw them in the sink. Drop them in a house plant instead.
  • Collect the water you use while rinsing fruit and vegetables. Use it to water house plants.


  • Install low-flow shower heads. Save: 2.5 gallons.
  • Take five-minute showers instead of 10-minute showers. Save: 12.5 gallons with a low-flow showerhead, 25 gallons with a standard 5 gallon-per-minute showerhead.
  • Fill the bathtub halfway or less. Save: 12 gallons.
  • When running a bath, plug the bathtub before turning on the water. Adjust the temperature as the tub fills.
  • Install aerators on bathroom faucets. Save: 1.2 gallons per person per day
  • Turn water off when brushing teeth or shaving. Save about 10 gallons per day
  • Install a high-efficiency toilet to save: 19 gallons per person per day. Take advantage of CCWD’s toilet rebate program here.
  • Don’t use the toilet as a wastebasket.
  • Be sure to test your toilet for leaks at least once a year.
  • Put food coloring in your toilet tank. If it seeps into the bowl without flushing, there’s a leak. Fix it and start saving gallons.
  • Consider buying a dual-flush toilet. It has two flush options: a half-flush for liquid waste and a full-flush for solid waste.
  • Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor and save up to 300 gallons a month.
  • Turn off the water while washing your hair and save up to 150 gallons a month.
  • When washing your hands, turn the water off while you lather.
  • Take a (short) shower instead of a bath. A bathtub can use up to 70 gallons of water.

2 Comments. Leave new

  • Regulations on watering our horse. Usually we fill his tank about every 2 days. Is this within limits? Please let me know. Even before water rationing stated we’ve conserved our water. We have buckets in the shower and catch our rinse water in thethe buckets when we rinse our bodies and use to water our plants. We are worried that if they mandate extreme water situations they might base our limit on our usage and we’ve cut every corner we can and can’t term much more off. This is definitely a concern of my wife and I. Hopefully with a little rainfall this rainy season we’ll be in a position to breathe normally. Regardless if all of the lakes are full people need to Rain their usage especially if the state doesn’t Bill’s more water storage locations to supply the vast amount of people entering our country. I’ll be looking for your return mail. Thanks, Steve and Jill Gray, Copperopolis Ca.

    • Joel Metzger
      June 2, 2015 8:41 am

      Steve & Jill,
      Thanks for contacting us to ask about the care of your horse. The watering restrictions apply to outdoor watering of ornamental landscaping. It is OK for you to keep the watering trough full to ensure your horse stays healthy. If you have any additional questions, please email

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