Free Sprinkler Evaluations Help Residents Control Water Usage
By Alana Earle, Arlington Water Utilities
Posted on November 25, 2019, November 25, 2019

Sprinkler

A sprinkler system that doesn’t work properly, has leaks, or isn’t set up to run efficiently can waste tens of thousands of gallons of water over a few months. This can cost homeowners heavily on their water bill.

To help residents, Arlington Water Utilities and Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD), the City’s raw water supplier, offer free sprinkler evaluations every year. Participation in the program has helped hundreds of Arlington households since it began in 2013.

With the program, customers receive a comprehensive look into their personal sprinkler system that usually takes about 45 minutes to complete. A trained, licensed irrigator provides a visual inspection of the backflow prevention device, sprinkler heads, and current controller watering schedules. The homeowner then receives a detailed report with notes and recommendations to help improve the system’s efficiency and reduce water waste. 

A total of 87 Arlington evaluations were completed during the first nine months of 2019. Some findings included:

  • 78 systems examined had at least one obstruction contributing to water waste.
  • 45 customers had at least one broken spray body and 43 had at least one broken nozzle. Both are parts of a sprinkler head. The EPA estimates just one broken sprinkler head can waste up to 25,000 gallons of water during a 6-month watering season.
  • 53 homes required sprinkler head raising, while 67 homes required head straightening. 

Many homes had multiple issues. For example, one home evaluated had 14 broken sprinkler heads and 15 sprinkler heads that needed to be raised. Click here to review an example of how a sprinkler evaluation helped save a customer money. 

Many homeowners, businesses and property managers tend to over-water, unintentionally wasting money and water. Here are a few tips to help make your landscape more water wise:

  • Plan out your landscape with North Texas native and adaptive plants from www.txsmartscape.com. These plants are typically drought-resistant and help reduce maintenance and water bill costs.
  • Space out irrigation days to “train lawns” to grow deeper roots. It is recommended to water only when needed and this typically means no more than twice a week during the summer. Take the guesswork out by following the weekly watering advice found at WaterIsAwesome.com.
  • Schedule water cycles before 10am or after 6pm to avoid hours of the day where evaporation occurs the most. This is not only a best practice it is also a city ordinance.
  • Keep lawns 3 inches and higher. Shorter lawns have shallow grass roots making it harder for your lawn to survive during periods of dry weather.

Arlington Water Utilities customers with remotely read meters can now sign up for high water usage and high bill email alerts to better control their water use and avoid utility bill surprises. Log in to the Know Your H2O website at www.arlingtontx.gov/wateronline. If you have not registered in the past, you will need your account number to register. Click on the “My Profile” tab on the bottom left side of the page and choose “Notifications” from the tabs to complete the sign up.

Sprinkler specialists note that even the smallest obstructions, or even incorrect head angles, can create a 30 percent water loss. This can equal to around 9,000 gallons of water wasted in just one month. This significant loss can be simple to avoid with the help from a sprinkler evaluation. Resources for making simple sprinkler repairs and adjustments are available online at www.SaveTarrantWater.com.

Tarrant Regional Water District created the sprinkler evaluation program to embrace and enhance water efficiency. TRWD reservoirs currently serve over two million citizens across an 11-county area and the population is expected to double over the next 50 years.

Arlington Water residents can request a free sprinkler evaluation by visiting www.SaveArlingtonWater.com. For further information regarding tips on water conservation and managing water bills, please visit www.savetarrantwater.com or www.arlington-tx.gov/water/.

 

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