It’s Earth Day; a time when everyone should do a little more to try and help our planet. This time of year, Floridians are encouraged to inspect their rain sensors on irrigation systems. This one move can help drastically reduce the amount of water needed for proper irrigation.
“Our lawns and landscape account for about half of residential water use, which means a tremendous savings can be realized when we look outside our homes,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “Water conservation plays a significant role in determining future water supply needs, is better for the environment, and is less costly than other alternative supplies.”
Depending on the region, homeowners use 30-60 percent of their water outdoors. 50 percent of that is wasted, in part, to overwatering. Since 1991, all automatic irrigation systems in Florida are required to have rain sensors.
The benefits of a rain sensor are multi-faceted. Not only does it conserve water and save money by reducing utility bills, but it also reduces wear on irrigation systems and helps protect surface and groundwater from runoff. Many rain sensors also shut off irrigation when they detect freezing temperatures. Most rain sensors can be installed by homeowners. Regular inspections are encouraged to ensure unnecessary irrigation is eliminated.
April has been formally recognized as Water Conservation Month in Florida for the past 18 years as April is typically a dry month when water demands are higher due to springtime planting and increasing temperatures.
For more information about water conservation and tips on how to reduce water use visit www.sjrwmd.com/waterconservation.