We have provided a Home Water Audit spreadsheet to help you evaluate how much water your family uses on a daily basis.
With the use of this helpful tool, you will be able to calculate your water usage for various household activities and determine the areas where you can conserve this essential and limited resource.
Disclaimer – This Home Water Audit is a simple tool for estimating the water usage of a typical household with characteristics similar to those you specify in the audit worksheet. The Home Water Audit cannot predict your actual usage or the amount of your water bills since it does not take account of all the variables that can affect your usage. Accordingly, it should not be relied on for those purposes. By selecting to download the Water Survey below, you acknowledge that you have read, understood and agreed with the statements in this paragraph.
To start conserving water, please click here.
Drought Restrictions for Carolina Water Service NC
NC water system customers are asked to keep informed of any current weekly updated water restrictions by checking the NC Utilities Commission’s web page.
If you have any questions, please check current Customer Notices or contact Customer Service at 1-800-525-7990
Wise Water Use
Even when our water utility system and your property’s water system are operating at top levels of efficiency, there is another very important and effective source of water conservation: You!
Every day, you can make wise water choices that conserve water and save you money. While there are hundreds of ways you can take charge of your water usage, here are a few easy ideas to get you started:
Indoor Water Conservation Tips
- Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth.
- Rinse your razor in a small amount of water collected in a plugged sink.
- Take a quick shower instead of a bath.
- Shower in under five minutes. Can’t do it? Trim just one minute off the length of your shower – it will help in the long run.
- Keep a jug of water in your fridge for a fast, cold drink.
- When rinsing fruits and vegetables, collect and re-use the water for your houseplants.
- Choose your pot wisely to use as little water as possible to cook your food.
- Use leftover cooking water as a base for soup – extra flavor bonus!
- Avoid putting compostable food waste in your garbage disposal.
- Scrape plates into compost rather than rinsing with water.
- Use your dishwasher – full loads only, please!
- Soak pots and pans rather than letting the water run while you scrape them.
- Wash dishes by hand in a basin or plugged sink – never under running water.
- Rinse soapy dishes in a second basin or plugged sink.
- Dump your grey water on a tree or bush in your yard, rather than down the sink.
- Wash only full loads in your washing machine
Outdoor Water Conservation Tips
- Water during the cool, early morning to minimize evaporation.
- Water deeply and infrequently. No more than an inch at a time.
- When watering, set a timer to remind yourself when to turn off the water.
- Use native plant species.
- Group plants according to their water requirements.
- Learn to recognize the signs of overwatering (lighter colored leaves, wilting shoots and algae or fungus growth).
- Cross some things off your to-do list. All of these no-work solutions protect the soil from the sun, keep it cooler and minimize evaporation:
- Leave your lawn clippings on the grass.
- Leave lower branches on trees and shrubs.
- Allow leaf litter to collect on the soil.
For additional water saving tips, visit the WaterSense website.
How to Detect Water Leaks
A leak in your system wastes water and money. Dripping faucets waste about 2,000 gallons of water each year. Leaky toilets waste as much as 200 gallons each day!
Some leaks, like a running toilet, are easy to identify. But others, like a slow leak in your irrigation system, make take longer to find. Leaks do not improve over time – they tend to get worse. Fortunately, most leaks are easily corrected – and the faster you find them, the more you will save.
Check Your Home
- Check all faucets and showerheads, making sure that they don't drip.
- Check all exposed pipes, looking for leaks.
- Check your toilets. Flapper valves and flushing mechanisms can both cause problems.
- Leaky flapper valves are common. They happen in old and new toilets. Problems can even occur with a new flapper valve. It’s worth checking your flapper valve regularly.
- Flush the toilet. While the reservoir is still filling, add two or three drops of food coloring to the water in the reservoir. Wait 15 to 30 minutes. If the water in the bowl changes color, the flapper valve is leaking and needs to be replaced.
- Be attentive to the sounds your toilet makes. If you hear water running long after you flush or if the sound begins spontaneously, you may have a faulty flushing mechanism that needs to be replaced.
- Walk around your yard, looking for wet spots or unusually green lawn. Those might be signs of a leak. Keep in mind, however, that water from the leak may seep down through the ground quickly, disappearing un-noticed. You may have a leak even if you see no signs of water.
- Check outside spigots, pipes and hoses for leaks.
- Check the connection between the spigot and your garden hose.
- If you have one, check your swimming pool. Many components of your pool system can leak water, including the filter, pump, heater, pipe valves and automatic filler. Your operating manuals may provide instructions for leak detection.
- If you have one, check your sprinkler system. Broken sprinkler heads and faulty connections will leak water while the system in running. Broken water pipes will leak at all times and significantly increase your water usage. Consult your operating manual for leak detection instructions.
Tip: Irrigation systems should be checked each spring before use to make sure they were not damaged by frost or freezing.
Check Your System
Even after checking your property, inside and out, for leaks, it’s a good idea to confirm that your water system is working properly. Fortunately, it’s easy to find out if your system is leaking water.
Follow these easy steps:
- Turn off all water-using appliances. Ensure that nothing on your property – inside or out – is using water. This includes things like the sink and shower faucets, your dishwasher and washing machine and any other appliances that use water. If you have an outdoor irrigation system, turn off its controller and manually shut off the two valves at the double check valve assembly (DCVA) to isolate the irrigation system.
- Find your meter box and access the meter.
- Watch the meter. Look for a red triangle or a silver and black round disc. It is your ‘flow indicator.’
- Locate your property's main shut-off valve. It is usually located close to the meter box.
- Turn off the shut-off valve.
- Test your shut-off valve. Turn on a faucet inside your home. If, after several seconds, water still flows from the faucet, then the shut-off valve is not working. Turn off the faucet and if no water flows through your faucet, your shut-off valve is working.
- Watch the meter:
- If the leak indicator or dial hand is still moving, then water is flowing between the meter and the shut-off valve. You have a leak somewhere between your meter and your shut-off valve.
- If neither the leak indicator nor dial hand is moving, then you know that the leak is not between the meter and your shutoff valve. Therefore, the leak must be in your system somewhere beyond your shut-off valve – maybe in your house or outside. Check your toilets, appliances, faucets, irrigation hoses etc., for leaks.
Find more wise water use facts and information