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Water Conservation Kits Program

Many people look at a leaky faucet in their home and don’t really think about how much water might be wasted. They’re often surprised to learn that a leak of just 60 drops per minute can waste approximately 192 gallons a month, or nearly 2,500 gallons per year! A toilet leak can be even more wasteful, potentially losing up to hundreds of gallons a day.

To help reduce these and other household wastes of our valuable water supply, Redwood City is offering free home water conservation kits to residents requesting them. These kits will help residents detect leaks in faucets and toilets, determine if their fixtures are water efficient, and offer tips on how to make their homes “water tight and waste free.

Here’s what’s included in the free water conservation kit:

  • A faucet sink aerator, and a variable dual setting kitchen faucet aerator with swivel to maximize water efficiency in a household’s sinks;
  • A showerhead flow meter to calculate a shower’s water waste and savings potential;
  • A drip gauge for detecting faucet leaks;
  • A pack of leak detector dye tablets to check for toilet leaks;
  • A flush volume calculator to determine how much water is used for each toilet flush;
  • A “saving water” brochure that teaches residents how to make their homes ‘water tight and waste-free;”
  • A brochure and order form featuring products that will help a household to save water, energy, and money.

There are several ways to obtain a free kit, as shown below. Residents must supply their water account number and address at the time of the request.

  • Call the Public Works Division at (650) 780-7464.
  • Pick up a kit from the Public Works Division, located at 1400 Broadway.
  • Pick up a kit at City Hall, located at 1017 Middlefield Road.

Redwood City offers these water conservation tips to help save water every day:

  • Do an indoor water audit and find the leaks;
  • Install water saving showerheads, faucet aerators, and water displacement bags;
  • When replacing toilets, use ultra low-flush models;
  • When replacing dishwasher or clothes washer, use water-saving models;
  • Do only full loads in your dishwasher or clothes washer;
  • Don’t let water run while shaving, brushing teeth, or washing hands;
  • Recycle freshwater aquarium water onto your houseplants.

By using these water saving tips, a household can save a great deal of water. For example, a typical five-minute shower uses about 30 gallons. That same shower, with a low-flow showerhead, uses only 15 gallons (50% water savings). Many toilets use between five and seven gallons of water per flush, but an ultra low-flush toilet uses only 1.6 gallons per flush (over 75% water savings). When dishes are washed in the sink with the water running, it can use up to 30 gallons, but by filling the sink or dishpan and turning off the tap, it uses only about five gallons (over 80% water savings). And, when brushing teeth with the tap running, up to 10 gallons of water can be used, most of it wasted. By wetting the brush and rinsing briefly, less than a gallon will be used (over 90% water savings). It’s easy to see how a little effort in daily water use can reap significant water savings.

Hopefully, Redwood City residents will obtain the water conservation kits and start saving water right away. For those that would prefer, Redwood City Public Works staff are happy to come to a residence in person and conduct a free indoor water use survey, and will bring along a water conservation kit at the same time. Residents should call 780-7464 to set an appointment.

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