NOTICE OF WATER RESTRICTION
CHANGE OF HOURS
The Board of Trustees voted at their January 2004 Board Meeting to change the hours of water restrictions. The old hours were Noon to 6 p.m. everyday year round.
The new hours will be One p.m. to Five p.m. every day year round.
Please check this page regularly to see if there are other changes. This page will also have information on water meter discussions.
Bob Spellberg, District Manager
Water Meter Program
October 4, 2013
The Board of Trustees voted at their May, 2004 Board of Trustees meeting to create a water meter program. The program started with a pilot program. The program started by adding software and hardware to District billing software to enable the District to read meters using the radio read method. The District will change existing residential and commercial customers on meters to the radio read system. The District also added radio read meters to approximately four hundred homes and read them monthly. Customers were not be charged on a meter basis, this was only a study. The pilot study took one year. From the study the District evaluated its rate schedule to see if adjustments are need and will discuss the study in the fall of 2006 at a Board of Trustees Meeting. The water meter pilot study was accepted in March of 2006. Ten years after the pilot program was accepted the clock started ticking , after the ten year period is over, all customers of the District will be charged based on the amount of water they use.
The Board decided that any home that changes ownership, or has new construction that will affect the use of water, will go on meter. New construction will purchase a meter. Any existing home on the system that changes hands will have a meter added at no cost. to the new homeowner. Any questions regarding the new program should be addressed to Bob Spellberg, District Manager 265-2048.
The District Board of Trustees has voted to require all water meters, accessories, and labor will now be paid for by the property owner. This method will stall any rate hikes required to pay for meters in the future. A reminder that all homes within the District will be required to be on water meter by March 2017.
Water pressure in the Ranchos, some residents complain of too much some complain of too little at times. Why? Well lets discuss your water system and how it works. The District has six operating wells with one in reserve. The District also operates one water booster station with two pumps. The District has two water tanks one is located to the south east of the Ranchos and has a 1.5 million gallon storage capacity. The other tank on the south west side of the Ranchos has a 3.0 million gallon storage capacity. When you take a look at the tanks check out the height difference on the hills they sit on.
Water from District wells is delivered to residents first then sends the excess water to the storage tanks. I will first discuss the water system with no wells running and using the gravity flow of the tanks. The 1.5 million gallon tank delivers water to residents in Pleasantview Subdivision, Silveranch Subdivision, Ranchos Estates, Unit 2 and parts of Dresslerville Rd. Because of its elevation the higher areas of the District will receive lower pressure when wells are off and the tank is delivering water by gravity. When someone on Dean Dr. is getting 50 pounds of pressure someone in Pleasantview Dr. could be receiving 80 pounds of pressure because that subdivision is lower in elevation. It all runs down hill the lower on the hill the faster the water is going to be which translates into higher pressure.
To remedy the lower pressures, the District in the past has wells that turn on based on lower pressures measured at the well sites. For instance, if the pressure at Well One on Fairway Dr. gets below 70 pounds, the well will turn on to boost pressure to the whole pressure area. Now instead of 50 pounds on Dean Drive there could be 65 to 75 pounds of pressure. But on the other hand the pressure in Pleasantview is now at 90 pounds or greater. The well will shut off when it reaches a preset level at the tank. When the storage tank is at 28 ft. of water, the well will shut off as to not overflow the tank. Then especially in the summer the water system gets into a cycle of turning wells off and on. The District is now undertaking the task of making pressure more constant by regulating wells and tank levels this winter.
So now the District has another problem. Instead of low pressure we now have high pressure. Hot water heater valves pop off causing problems. What to do? The District recommends that homes that experience constant high pressures talk to a plumber and discuss the addition of a pressure regulator valve to have constant pressure delivered. The District will make every attempt to stabilize pressures this winter. Please realize that when demand is steady it is much easier to regulate pressure. Early in the irrigation season pressures can fluctuate greatly because of irregular usage. Later in the spring and summer, the usage settles out and the pressure becomes fairly constant. If you have any questions about pressure or when is the best time to water please call the District at 265-2048.
Outdoor Water Saving Tips
Tips for Conserving Water Outside of Your Home
- Laying new seed or sod?
New sod and seed may be watered within restricted hours. To obtain a special permission, call District Office at 265-2048.
- How much water?
Lawns need only 25 millimeters (1 inch) of water per week, including rain. Longer, infrequent watering will help to develop deeper, healthier roots. Keep your grass two to two and half inches high and you will help the soil retain moisture and reduce evaporation from sunlight and wind.
- Aerate your lawn
Aerating promotes grass roots to absorb all the natural moisture that is available. Aerating also lets air flow into the soil and provides the grass roots with oxygen. You can aerate simply by puncturing the lawn with a gardening fork or by renting a powered aerator. Check with your tool rental equipment dealers or aerating service companies for further information.
- De-thatch you lawn
Thatch is the layer of organic matter that forms between the blades of grass and the soil. A thin layer of thatch can be beneficial, preventing evaporation of water from the topsoil. Too much thatch can be harmful and can rob the roots of the oxygen and water needed for healthy growth. Remove the thatch from your lawn at least once a year, using a rake, a thatching attachment on your mower or a thatching machine.
A well-balanced soil that is properly watered should not need fertilizer. Don’t give your lawn too much fertilizer, as it might outgrow its soil limitations and watering regime. Avoid applying fertilizer, herbicides or pesticides during the dormant period.
- Lawn Alternatives
Consider replacing some areas of lawn with low-growing ground covers or herbs. Another alternative is to cover parts of your garden with hardscape made from natural or synthetic materials, such as flat rocks, flagstones, concrete asphalt or compact gravel.
Mulching around plants reduces the number of weeds (which compete for water) and conserves soil moisture and moderates soil temperatures. The recommended depth for mulches is 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 cm). Good mulches are straw, leaf, bark, gravel or wood chips.
- Keep mower blades sharp to avoid tearing the grass.
- Don’t cut wet grass
- Set mower height to leave 50 to 65 mm (two to two and half inches)
- Leave grass clippings to decompose; they act as mini-mulch to reduce evaporation.
Flower and Vegetable Gardens
- About 70 to 80 per cent of all plant problems are directly related to incorrect watering.
- Water around the base of plants slowly and deeply - moistening the top 4 to 6 inches of soil - at least once a week. Light, frequent watering is harmful because it encourages shallow root growth and enhances germination of weed seeds. You can check the soil wetting depth with a screwdriver or stake.
- Water plants early in the morning to avoid evaporation from the sun and wind. Watering in the middle of the day increases the amount of water lost to evaporation by as much as 40 percent. Conversely, watering in late evening lets droplets remain on leaves, which can promote plant diseases.
- Consider installing drought-tolerant native plantings. A drought-tolerant plant can survive with very little, if any, artificial watering or irrigation once it is established. Natural rainfall is usually enough for these plants, if they’re growing in the right habitat (i.e. one similar to their natural habitat), and they can usually survive weeks of dry weather.
- Plants with grey, fuzzy, waxy or finely divided leaves are also considered drought-tolerant. Perennials like daylilies, flax, pinks, bellflowers and peonies thrive under dry conditions. Annuals like cosmos, sage, mallow and California poppies are also drought-tolerant and provide season-long color in your garden. Check with your garden centre for further suggestions.
Trees and Shrubs
- When watering trees and large shrubs, water around the drip-line of the tree (area below the branches where water drips from the leaves) - not at the trunk. A great way to water trees is to use milk or water jugs. Fill with water and poke small holes about 8 in the bottom of each. Place these around the drip line of each tree. The water seeps out slowly into soil near the roots, where the tree needs water the most.
- Avoid heavy direct watering by hose, which can wash away soil, exposing the roots to pests and disease, and making shrubs and small trees more susceptible to blow down.
- Keep turf at least two feet from the trunks of young or newly planted trees as it will compete with the trees for water. Consider applying mulch in this area.
General Outdoor Water Saving Tips
- Weed regularly. Weeds compete with your plantings for moisture.
- Consider installing a Micro/Drip irrigation system. Micro/Drip irrigation systems use low-water-volume irrigation components (under 20 gallons per hour), at low pressure (under 25 psi) to deliver a precise amount of water to the root zone of plants. These systems can be tailored effectively to individual plant and garden needs. During even the most stringent water conservation measures, micro and drip irrigation systems can be used to water flowers, trees, shrubs and vegetables.
- Make sure hoses are in perfect condition. A hose delivers 27 litres of water per minute so a leaking hose or coupling can add up to significant water waste.
- Use nonporous containers like glazed pots, as they are more efficient at retaining water. Also, use larger containers (pots 10 inches (25 cm) in diameter and larger) as the larger the volume of soil, the slower it dries. Nest smaller pots inside larger ones and insulate the space between the pots with potting soil. This will keep the roots cool and will slow down evaporation.
- Consider collecting and recycling water by installing rain barrels outside of your home. The average house roof in our region can collect 272 litres of rain (60 gallons) on each nine square metres of roof, for every 1 inch of rain. Installing rain barrels at the downspouts of you eaves troughs is a great way to collect rainwater to use on you lawn or in the garden during our dry summer months. Make sure it has a secured lid to prevent children gaining access; this also will discourage breeding mosquitoes, prevent contamination and keep out wildlife. You will also need an overflow attachment and hose attachment for watering. Please visit our web site for more information on where you can purchase a rain barrel
- Wash your car or boat with a bucket of water and soap and then rinse it using a hose with a shut off device. Do not leave hose running or left unattended.
- Clean your sidewalks and driveways with a brush or broom. If it is necessary to use a hose, make sure it is equipped with a shut off device.
- Adjust irrigation systems and/or sprinklers so that water does not run down driveway, sidewalks or street. This is considered a waste of water and is in direct violation of the water conservation bylaw #3061.
- If water is needed for a restricted use, consider a bulk purchase from a supplier who uses a well or water from outside the Greater Victoria Drinking Water System.
- Cover the swimming pool. An uncovered swimming pool loses one inch of water per week. Also, check regularly for cracks and leaks, and backwash only when necessary.
- Do not water on windy days, cool, overcast or rainy days. Consider making your irrigation system more water efficient by installing a rain shut off device that will automatically turn your system off when it is raining.