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Turn Back the Clock on Water Waste in San Diego

(SAN DIEGO) Oct. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Daylight savings time ends in the United States on Sunday, November 1 when clocks are set back one hour at 2:00 a.m. local daylight time, which becomes 1:00 a.m. local standard time. With the rainy season just getting underway, California American Water is launching a public awareness campaign to remind local residents to turn their sprinklers off - a simple step that can be done when you turn the clock back - to protect the environment while saving water and money during the winter months.

Irrigation experts encourage outdoor water users to reduce their irrigation run times and frequencies during the fall and early winter.

"Many of us continue to irrigate more than we need in the Fall," said California American Water's operation manager, Brian Bruce. "When compared to the peak water needs of the summer season, outdoor water use in November should be reduced by 60 to 75 percent. Shorter days mean less sun - and your plants need less water."

According to Bruce, water company employees spot residents and businesses with their sprinklers running while it's raining every year. "Not only do we see it happening, we see bills with hundreds or even thousands of gallons of daily water use, and when folks are using that much water in November or January, there's only one likely explanation," he said. "Sprinklers running in the winter account for a tremendous amount of water waste."

Turning sprinklers off also saves money. "We want our customers to know they can avoid high water bills by controlling their outdoor use," Bruce said. "It's good for their pocketbooks and good for the environment."

In fact, it's also good for home landscaping. Too much water can be more damaging to plants than drought. Landscaping experts estimate that 90 percent of plants killed die from over-watering. Soggy soil can prevent nutrients and air from reaching plant roots, inviting unwanted diseases such as root rot.

If there is a long break between rains, California American Water recommends manually watering landscape with a hose and a low-flow hose nozzle. One way to test if soil needs watering is by pushing a screwdriver into the ground. If it goes in easily, the soil is moist and doesn't need water.

California American Water offers free Water Wise House Calls to all residential and multi-residential customers in its San Diego service district, as well as low-flow hose nozzles and other water-saving devices. California American Water customers are encouraged to sign up for a home water survey and may schedule an appointment by contacting Helen Lau. Helen can be reached at (619) 435-7515 or vial email at helen.lau@amwater.com. All residents who receive a water bill from California American Water are eligible to participate.
California American Water is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to more than 600,000 people. California American Water's San Diego County service district includes approximately 21,000 households and businesses, or a population of about 95,000 people, in the cities of Coronado, Imperial Beach, south Chula Vista, and parts of south San Diego.