Fun Water Facts

Did You Know?

Image of Boy Drinking Water

  • The average San Diegan uses about 88 gallons of water each day at home for both indoor and outdoor uses.
  • San Diego imports 80% to 90% of its water.
  • If placed into gallon bottles, the 168 million gallons of water San Diego imports daily would encircle the earth more than one and a quarter times.
  • More than half of the water we use in the warmer months is used for outdoor irrigation.
  • 97% of the world's water is salty or otherwise undrinkable. Another 2% is locked in ice caps and glaciers. That leaves just 1% for consumption by all living creatures, including plants and animals.
  • If everyone in the US used just one less gallon of water per shower every day, we could save some 85 billion gallons of water per year.
  • If everyone in the US flushed the toilet just one less time per day, we could save a lake full of water about one mile long, one mile wide and four feet deep.
  • Every glass of water brought to your table in a restaurant requires another two glasses of water to wash and rinse the glass. Since nearly 70 million meals are served each day in US restaurants, we'd save more than 26 million gallons of water if only one person in four declined the complimentary glassful.
  • If you sprinkle your lawn too lightly, it prevents water from getting deep into the soil. The grass then develops shallower roots and becomes less drought-resistant. It's better to deep soak your grass, but doing it less frequently. To find out exactly how much water you lawn needs, any time during the year, create a free customized watering schedule.
  • Getting a cover for your pool can help prevent evaporation. An averaged-size pool with average sun and wind exposure loses approximately 1,000 gallons of water per month. A pool cover cuts the loss by 90%.

The above information has been adapted from the following brochures:

  • "Who, Where, When and Water Conservation Questions & Answers" originally published by the City of San Diego Public Utilities Department, Water Conservation Program, San Diego, California.
  • "55 Facts, Figures & Follies of Water Conservation," published by the American Water Works Association (AWWA). The City of San Diego has received copyright permission from AWWA to post this information on this website.