Accessibility and Website Information Skip Site Wide Navigation Skip to Content City Seal | HomeCity of San Diego | Home
Search City of San Diego

Waste No Water Information and Resources

Drought Alert: Mandatory Water Use Restrictions Effective November 1, 2014

San Diegans Waste No Water, All Ways. Always.

In response to continuing drought conditions statewide, the City has enacted its Drought Alert stage of mandatory water use restrictions, the second phase of citywide conservation.

Water Only 3 Assigned Days A Week

Water no more than 3 days per week on the following assigned days, which are determined by your address or type of dwelling.

NOTE: this 3-day-per-week schedule applies to all types of systems (standard sprinkler systems, as well as systems with water-efficient devices such as drip-irrigation, micro-irrigation and stream rotor sprinklers):

  • Residences with odd-numbered addresses (301 Drought Drive): Water ONLY on Sundays, Tuesdays & Thursdays.
  • Residences with even-numbered addresses (500 Conservation Circle): Water ONLY on Saturdays, Mondays & Wednesdays.
  • Apartments, condominiums and businesses: Water ONLY on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays.

Water at the Right Times

Time limits apply to standard spinkler systems.

NOTE: These time limits do NOT apply to landscape irrigation systems using water-efficient devices, including drip and micro-irrigation systems and stream rotor sprinklers.

  • November 1 to May 31, water between 4 pm-10 am for ONLY 7 MINUTES when using a standard sprinkler system.
  • June 1 to October 31, water between 6 pm-10 am for ONLY 10 MINUTES when using a standard sprinkler system.

Additional Drought Alert Restrictions

  • Stop operation of ornamental fountains, except to the extent needed for maintenance purposes.
  • Use a hand-held hose equipped with a positive shut-off nozzle or timed sprinkler system to water landscaped areas.
  • Irrigation is not permitted during a rain event.
  • The washing of automobiles, trucks, trailers, airplanes and other types of transportation equipment is only allowed during the following times:

    • Between 4 pm-10 am from November 1 to May 31.
    • Between 6 pm-10 am from June 1 to October 31.
    • NOTE: Mobile equipment washings are exempt from these regulations where the health, safety and welfare of the public are contingent upon frequent vehicle cleanings, such as garbage trucks and vehicles to transport food products, livestock and perishables.
  • Washing is permitted at any time at a commercial car wash.
  • Boats and boat engines are permitted to be washed down after use.
  • Use recycled or non-potable water for construction puroposes when available
  • Use of water from fire hydrants will be limited to firefighting, meter installation by the Public Utilities Department as part of its Fire Hydrant Meter Program, and related activities necessary to maintain the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of San Diego.
  • Construction operations receiving water from a fire hydrant or water truck will not use water beyond normal activities.
  • Irrigation is permitted any day at any time as follows:

    1. As required by a landscape permit.
    2. For erosion control.
    3. For establishment, repair or renovation of public use fields for schools and parks.
    4. For landscape establishment following a disaster.

These restrictions are in adddition to permanent mandatory water use restrictions, in effect at all times. See the list below for that important information.

Permanent Mandatory Restrictions

Permanent mandatory restrictions have been in place since 2011, and apply year-around, whether the City is in a drought or not. These restrictions are designed to promote water conservation as a permanent way of life in San Diego.

  • City of San Diego water customers must prohibit excessive irrigation and must immediately correct leaks in their private water systems. The City's regulations state that customers "shall not allow water to leave their property due to drainage onto adjacent properties or public or private roadways or streets or gutters due to excessive irrigation and/or uncorrected leaks."
  • Customers cannot use a running hose to wash down sidewalks, driveways, parking areas, tennis courts, patios or other paved areas, except to alleviate immediate safety or sanitation hazards, unless that hose is connected to a water efficient device such as a commercial water broom.
  • Overfilling of swimming pools and spas is strictly prohibited.
  • All decorative water fountains must use a recirculating pump.
  • Vehicles may only be washed at a commercial car wash or by using a hose with an automatic shutoff nozzle or with a hand-held water container.
  • The City will not provide new water service connections for customers using single pass-through cooling systems.
  • All new conveyer car wash and commercial laundry systems connections will be required to employ a recirculating water system.
  • Restaurants and other food establishments shall only serve and refill water for patrons upon request.
  • Guests in hotels, motels, and other commercial lodging establishments will be provided the option of not laundering towels and linens daily.

These restrictions apply to those whose property lies within the City of San Diego Public Utilities Department's service area. If you receive your water bill from a different agency, please check with that agency regarding any applicable water use restrictions.