Water Conservation

The Need for Conservation

Marylanders have access to an abundance of water much of the time, and we’re accustomed to having water available at the twist of a faucet. U.S. citizens use approximately 205 billion gallons of water a day for household, industrial and agricultural uses. Unlike the dry western areas of the country, in this area we often overlook the importance of conserving water. As our population continues to grow, however, demands on our precious water resources will increase. In order to ensure adequate water resources for our future needs, we must put conservation measures into effect now.


Practicing water conservation on a regular basis can prevent or postpone the building of new water supply infrastructure. When utilities are able to reduce demand, they can frequently extend the life of existing infrastructure, saving their consumers the cost of building or renovating. Conservation can also reduce the amount of water that needs to be processed by wastewater treatment plants, again preserving infrastructure and also reducing the amount of waste discharged to streams and rivers. Finally, sound water use practices can make us more resilient during times of drought, negating the need for mandatory interventions.

 Related Resources

Water-Saving Tips

  1. Household
  2. Water Fixtures
  3. Outdoor
  4. Swimming Pools
  5. Car Washes

How to Save Water in the Bathroom

  • Do not let the faucet flow while brushing your teeth or shaving. Use a glass of water for rinsing teeth.
  • If your shower has a single-handle control or shut-off valve, turn off the flow while soaping or shampooing.
  • Install low-flow aerators and shower heads. They are inexpensive, easy to install and save water and energy.
  • Leaking diverter valves (valves which divert water from the tub spout to the shower head) should be replaced.
  • Place a weighted plastic one-half gallon jug or a toilet dam in the tanks of conventional toilets to displace and save water with each flush.
  • Take showers instead of tub baths. Consider bathing small children together.
  • When constructing a new home or remodeling your bathroom, install low-consumption (1.6 gal/flush) toilets.

How to Save Water in the Kitchen & Laundry Room

  • Do not pre-rinse dishes prior to loading in a dishwasher. Pre-rinsing is an unnecessary and wasteful use of water.
  • Operate the washing machine and dishwasher only when they are fully loaded.
  • Refrigerate a pitcher of drinking water instead of letting a faucet flow until the water is cold enough to drink.
  • Use a dishpan or plug the sink for washing and rinsing dishes. Install low-flow aerators on all faucets.
  • Use the proper water level or load size selection on the washing machine.
  • When purchasing a washing machine or dishwasher, consider water consumption as well as energy efficiency. Most manufacturers now provide this information to consumers.