New Water Restrictions
Effective June 10, 2022, the City of San Diego is implementing more stringent water restrictions for all water customers following a statewide order from Gov. Gavin Newsom. At the governor’s direction, the State Water Resources Control Board adopted an emergency water conservation regulation calling on local water agencies to take appropriate action that will conserve water throughout California.
The City has had permanent mandatory water restrictions since 2016 (see below). The Level 2 actions being implemented are in addition to those water conservation rules under the City’s Water Shortage Contingency Plan.
Level 2 water restrictions include the following actions for all City of San Diego water customers:
- Areas with no irrigation system must use a hand-held hose with a shutoff nozzle, hand-held container or a garden hose sprinkler system on a timer.
- Irrigation is prohibited during and within 48 hours of a rain event.
- Landscape irrigation is limited to no more than three days per week before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m. This does not apply to commercial growers or nurseries, nor to the irrigation of golf course greens and trees.
- Use of recycled or non-potable water, when available, is required for construction purposes.
- Prohibition of irrigating non-functional turf with potable water.
- Washing of vehicles at residences is prohibited. Washing is still permitted at commercial car washes.
Permanent Mandatory Water Restrictions
The City of San Diego has year-round permanent mandatory water restrictions in place. These restrictions are designed to promote water conservation as a permanent way of life in San Diego.
- A customer shall not allow potable water to irrigate outdoor landscapes in a manner that causes runoff, such that, water flows onto adjacent property, non-irrigated areas, private and public walkways, roadways, parking lots, or structures.
- Customers shall repair or stop all water leaks upon discovery or within 72 hours of notification by the City of San Diego.
- Customers shall not wash down sidewalks, driveways, parking areas, tennis courts, or other paved areas without using a power washer or a hose with a shutoff nozzle. Washing any paved areas is only allowed to alleviate immediate safety or sanitation hazards. Water shall be collected and prevented from leaving the property and entering the municipal separate storm sewer system.
- Customers shall not overfill swimming pools and spas.
- Customers shall not use non-recirculating potable water in ornamental fountains or cascading fountains.
- Customers shall not use a hose that dispenses potable water to wash a motor vehicle, except where the hose is fitted with a shut-off nozzle or device attached to it that causes it to cease dispensing water immediately when not in use.
- Single pass-through cooling systems, as part of water service connections, shall be prohibited after the effective date of this section. Non-recirculating systems in all conveyer car wash and commercial laundry systems shall be prohibited after the effective date of this section.
- The serving of drinking water other than upon request in eating or drinking establishments, including but not limited to restaurants, hotels, cafes, cafeterias, bars or other public places where food or drink are served and/or purchased is prohibited.
- To promote water conservation, operators of hotels and motels shall provide guests with the option of choosing not to have towels and linens laundered daily. The hotel or motel shall prominently display notice of this option in each guestroom using clear and easily understood language.
- Potted plants, non-commercial vegetable gardens and fruit trees, residential and commercial landscapes, including golf courses, parks, school grounds and recreation fields, may only be watered before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m.
- The irrigation with potable water of ornamental turf on public street medians shall be prohibited.
- The application of potable water to outdoor landscapes during and within 48 hours after measurable rainfall shall be prohibited.
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.
Report Water Waste
Do you notice water being wasted, such as irrigation water running down the street, broken or misdirected sprinklers watering pavement or watering in the middle of the day? San Diego residents are encouraged to report water waste by:
- Submitting complaints via the City's Get It Done app (photo and video submissions of violations are encouraged), or
- Emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with information, including description and address.
If over irrigation reaches the storm drain (gutter, street or storm drain inlet) the City's Stormwater Enforcement Team
will respond. Learn more at the Stormwater website
. All other water waste concerns will be addressed by the Water Waste team.