How Water-Smart is Your Household

How Water-Smart is Your Household

By Kit Dunlap, President/CEO, Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce

Is your house as water-efficient as it can be? The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District has compiled a do-it-yourself household water use assessment to help you understand how much water you use, identify leaks and show you ways to reduce your water use. It will help you conserve water and save money at the same time! The Household Water Use Assessment includes tips on the following:

1. Analyzing how much water you use

2. Detecting leaks (pipes, toilets and faucets)

3. Checking for and using water-efficient appliances

4. Outdoor water use

5. Changing your water ways

For complete assessment information online, visit and download the Household Water Audit (pdf). Copies of the assessment are also available at the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, 230 E.E. Butler Parkway in Downtown Gainesville. Information includes simple steps on outdoor water use and saving water outside:

• Have a sprinkler? Make sure the spray heads are not watering hard surfaces like your driveway.

• Don’t over water your lawn. To promote strong root growth and drought tolerance in plants, water deeply and infrequently.

• Place an empty tuna can on your lawn to catch and measure the water output of your sprinklers. Water only 1” per week.

• Water during the early morning and the late evening. There is generally less wind and lower temperatures and therefore less water lost to evaporation.

• Use efficient irrigation method (drip irrigation) or hand water (if possible).

• Mulch around trees and plants to retain moisture around roots.

• Check for leaky hoses and faucets outside.

• Never leave the water running when using a hose. A hose nozzle with shut-off switch can save hundreds of gallons.

• Use a broom, not a hose, to clean the driveway or sidewalk. (Burn calories too!)

• Plant drought resistant trees and shrubs and minimize turf areas.

• Raise your lawn mower blade to at least three inches. A lawn cut higher encourages grass roots to grow deeper.

It’s the Law! Due to drought conditions across Georgia, the Director of the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) has declared a level two drought response for the entire state. The City of Gainesville and Hall County also follow this declaration. The level two drought response schedule is as follows:

• Odd-numbered addresses may water only on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, 12 midnight to 10 a.m. No watering on Fridays.

• Even-numbered and unnumbered addresses may water only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, 12 midnight to 10 a.m. No watering on Fridays.

For general information on water conservation:

Information on inefficient fixtures & repairs:

Ultra Low Flow Toilet Performance:

Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce President/CEO serves as Chairman of The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District, a planning entity dedicated to developing comprehensive watershed, wastewater and water supply and conservation plans to be implemented by local governments in the 16-county metro Atlanta region.