Be in the know about H2O

Water is one of the Earth’s most precious resources, but it’s an element many of us take for granted. Conserving water helps rivers and streams to sustain healthy aquatic ecosystems; it lessens the need for new water-treatment facilities and water storage. Reducing water waste also saves money.

Here are five easy actions and fixes to help cut down on wasted water:

Stop leaks: Check indoor fixtures for drips and check under the basin. Just 60 drops per minute is equivalent to 192 gallons per month. Check outdoor irrigation by looking for mud puddles or wet gutters.

Change the can: Toilets waste more water than any other fixture in the home. Those made before 1992 are very likely to be innefficient, so look for a date stamp located inside the tank. Several new models offer efficiency, including dual-flush toilets that give full- and half-flush options.

Swap that washer: The second largest water user in the home is the washing machine. Replace it with an Energy Star appliance, which uses 35 percent to 50 percent less water and 50 percent less energy—saving money in both areas.

Plant with practicality: When putting in a new yard or just adding to landscaping, choose low-water plants and use mulch. In general, use common sense by selecting plants that are appropriate to local conditions. For details, check out, which offers gardening principles that save water while creating a beautiful landscape.

Water wisely: Change the scheduling of your irrigation week to week or at least month to month, making adjustments for the weather conditions. Water only when the sun is down to reduce evaporation losses and never water if the soil is wet.