Water Efficiency

State Water Efficiency Regulations

In 2018, Governor Brown signed a law that enacted new state water efficiency regulations. Click below to find out how this impacts you, and the District as a whole.








Download this fact sheet as a PDF

To email your local representative, click on their name below:

State Senator Jim Nielsen
State Assemblyman Ken Cooley
State Assemblyman Kevin Kiley

Water Conservation Stages


The CHWD Board of Directors recently changed the Districts water conservation Stage from a Stage 2 Water Alert to a Stage 1 Normal Water Supply. This means that the District’s water supply is able to meet all the water demands of its customers in the immediate future. In order to meet the Stage 1 Water Conservation goals CHWD customers should take the following steps to use water efficiently.

Water Conservation Stages

  • Water is to be confined to the customer’s property and shall not be allowed to run off to adjoining properties or to the roadside ditch or gutter.  Care shall be taken not to water past the point of saturation.
  • Free-flowing hoses for all uses are prohibited.  Automatic shut-off devices must be attached on any hose or filling apparatus in use.
  • Leaking customer pipes or faulty sprinklers shall be repaired within five (5) working days or less if warranted by the severity of the problem.
  • All pools, spas, and ornamental fountains/ponds shall be equipped with a re-circulation pump and shall be constructed to be leak-proof.  Pool draining and refilling shall be allowed only for health, maintenance, or structural considerations.
  • Washing streets, parking lots, driveways, sidewalks, or buildings, is prohibited except as necessary for health, aesthetic or sanitary purposes.

Customers are encouraged to take advantage of the District’s water conservation programs and rebates. You can learn more about these by visiting www.chwd.org/rebates

For additional information about water efficiency, please contact the District at (916) 725-6873.


WaterSmart Classes

Every spring and summer, CHWD a series of Water Smart Landscape classes for their customers. These free WaterSmart classes are chock full of tips and tools to help residents maintain or upgrade their yards in the most water-efficient ways. Please check this page frequently for the latest class information. To see the next available WaterSmart class, check out our events page. Resources from our most recent WaterSmart webinars can be found here.

Free Irrigation Efficiency Review

CHWD can arrange a FREE Landscape Irrigation Review to help you manage and maintain your irrigation system. Upon completion of the Review, you will receive a written report that includes recommendations for improving your system’s performance and a 12-month irrigation schedule based upon your personal landscape needs. To sign up, fill out our online sign-up form.


For the full list of rebate programs you might be eligible for, visit the rebates page.

Free Smart Irrigation Controller Direct Installation Program

One smart irrigation controller, including installation, is available at no charge to CHWD customers who have a standard sprinkler timer installed. For more information, visit the Smart Irrigation Controller Direct Install Program page.

Water Efficiency Tips

Water use outside the home can account for more than 60 percent of the water we use. For most customers, the most effective way to meet the requested 20% reduction is to greatly reduce or discontinue outdoor watering at this time. Here are some simple things you can do to water now and year-round.

Water your landscape only when needed – Most experts recommend infrequent deep watering to promote a healthy landscape and efficient watering. Reduce your watering time and frequency during cooler weather and during the spring and fall when days are shorter. Most common landscaping will survive during winter months with your irrigation system shut off entirely. If you must water, do so infrequently and monitor your watering to prevent overwatering and run-off.

Mow your lawn longer – Keeping your lawn a little longer (about three inches high) during summer months will keep it healthier because there is more surface area on the grass and the longer blades help reduce the amount of water it needs by providing more shade to the soil. This is also the best time to mulch your lawn, rather than bag mow, as it will provide additional shade and reduces the amount of water your lawn needs.

Mulch those flower beds – Applying mulch to plants and shrubs will help to keep the soil cooler in the summer months ahead, and reduce water evaporation.

Know your plants – Read the instructions on how to most efficiently water your shrubs and plants and adjust your watering as needed. Most shrubs and plants – particularly rose bushes – require significantly less water than your lawn.

Check for and fix leaky pipes – Leaks in your system will cost you money. Leaks commonly include running toilets and broken sprinkler heads. Inspect your pipes, both indoors and outdoors, for evidence of leaks. If any are leaking, we ask that you repair them immediately, saving you both water and money. A continuous leak from a hole as small as ¼ inch in diameter would waste more than one million gallons of water in three months.

Please note that the following graphic is for comparative purposes only. Due to differences in computer monitors, the circles on the graphic do not represent actual sizes.


Fix leaky toilets and faucets – A faucet dripping at the rate of only one drip per second will waste 34 gallons of water in a month’s time.   Toilets that leak and run continuously will waste considerably more water.   Fixing these leaks will save water and money.

Install ultra-low-flush or high-efficiency toilets – If your home or business does not already have water-efficient toilets, now is great time to consider having them installed.   CHWD offers rebates to help offset the cost, and these toilets can save the typical household up to 650 gallons of water each month.

Run dishwashers and washing machines only when full

To hand wash dishes, don’t let the water run out of the tap. Instead, fill one side of the sink with warm soapy water and fill the other side of the sink with rinse water. This will save 2.5 gallons per minute.

Take a shorter shower. Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save 2.5 gallons per minute if you have a water-efficient showerhead. And if you don’t have a water-efficient showerhead, now is a great time to get one.

Turn off the water while you brush your teeth or shave.

Know the location of your main shut off valve – If a pipe bursts, you will be able to shut off the water immediately. If a pipe bursts and you are unable to shut off the water, call CHWD at (916) 725-6873 for assistance.

For information about the District’s free irrigation efficiency review, click here or call (916) 725-6873 to schedule an appointment.

Visit the following links for more water conservation information and tips. 

Save Our Water Logo BeWaterSmart BeWaterSmart

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What time of day should I water?
To minimize the amount of water that is lost to evaporation, watering should only take place between dusk and dawn.
Can I receive a rebate for tearing out my lawn?
**NEW**The State of California is offering a cash for grass program. For information on this program visit http://www.saveourwaterrebates.com/ This program is not affiliated with CHWD.

CHWD is currently not offering any rebate for lawn removal. We may consider this option for the future. If you are interested in putting your name on a list for more information on this in the future, please complete the contact form.

How can I report water wasters?
If you see any water being wasted within the CHWD service area, please report it using our report water wasters contact form. You can also call the District at (916) 725-6873, Option 6. CHWD will investigate these reports and can disconnect water service if necessary.
Does CHWD offer recycled water?
CHWD does not currently offer recycled water to customers.
Can I wash my car?
There are currently no restrictions in place that prohibit the washing of cars. However, free-flowing hoses are prohibited. All hoses must have an automatic shut off valve at all times. CHWD encourages customers to wash vehicles or other equipment at commercial car washes that use recycled or reclaimed water.
Can I fill my pool?
The District requests that pool draining and refilling are specifically for health, maintenance, or structural purposes. For more information, please contact the District at (916) 725-6873.
How can I see my Water Usage?
By simply clicking this link and registering your account number, you can view your past water bills, and find your usage.

Contact Information – CHWD’s Water Efficiency Supervisor

Do you have any additional questions about the drought or conservation? Please feel free to contact Rex Meurer, CHWD’s Water Efficiency Supervisor. Rex has been with CHWD for more than 15 years. He can be reached at (916) 725-6873 or waterefficiency@chwd.org.