Conservation Frequently Asked Questions

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Garden hose and grass - largeMy water bill is a lot higher this month. Is there someone who can come to my house and help me locate the problem?  Yes, the District can send out a water conservation specialist / certified irrigation auditor free of charge to your home or business to help find the problem. Click here for more information.

How can I tell if I have a leak? First, make sure the washing machine, dishwasher, faucets, hoses, sprinklers and other water fixtures are all turned off. Then, check the water meter register located inside the water meter box (Click here to see how to locate your water meter). You will see either a red sweep hand or a red triangle to use as a 'leak indicator’. If there is no leak, the red indicator will be stationary because no water is passing through the meter. If the red indicator is rotating, water is passing through the meter, which could indicate a leak on the property. A leaky toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons per day.

Why should we conserve water? Water is a precious natural resource. Only about 1% of the earth’s water is suitable and available for our use. If we want future generations to have enough water, conservation is essential. Water conservation can have a huge impact on water utility operations and costs. Lower water production rates translate to reduced operating costs. By using less water, you may save on your water bill and gas or electric bills as well. For more conservation information, click here.

How much is a unit of water? Your water bill documents usage based on the number of units per billing cycle. A unit of water is 100 cubic feet or 748 gallons.

How much water do we typically use? The average person uses almost 100 gallons of water per day. The average single family residence in Vallecitos service area uses 14 units per month (10,472 gallons). 

Do low-flow toilets really work?

Yes, they reduce the water required per flush from 3.5, 5 or 7 gallons to 1.6 gallons or less, saving water and possibly reducing your water bill. Toilets are the highest water using device in your home. The new low flow toilets have been engineered with higher velocity flushing to clear wastes versus higher volumes of water. To see if rebates are currently available, click here.

I have questions about what plants to put in my yard, how to care for them, and how to design a new water-wise landscape. Can someone give me any information on this? Yes, we have several informational gardening brochures available in our lobby or contact our Conservation staff can also mail you a packet of information upon request. Or, check out the San Diego County Water Authority’s website for free landscape design templates that provide ideas and inspiration, particularly for do-it-yourselfers. They also offer their 140 page eGuide to a WaterSmart Lifestyle for ideas such as how to design outdoor rooms, reconnect with your neighbors with a new front yard water-wise garden, and more!

Does Vallecitos offer rebates for installing drought-tolerant plants? Vallecitos currently does not offer rebates, but our wholesalers, the San Diego County Water Authority and the Metropolitan Water District sometimes offer turf replacement rebates. Click here for more information.

Are there any classes I can take to learn more about water-wise landscaping? Vallecitos offers water-wise landscape classes and other events from time to time, which are advertised in our Splash newsletter, or promoted on our website and Facebook page. “Like Us” on Facebook or sign up for e-news (link to e-news) and you will automatically receive notifications. Gardening classes are also offered by the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College or go to the events section at www.watersmartsd.org.

Can water conservation education be brought to my child’s school?
Yes, we have several education programs available for all age groups.  Click here to learn more about the District's free School Education Programs.