SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Between watering the lawn, taking a shower, doing the dishes and using the bathroom, state water officials say the average per capita use of water on the Central Coast is just under 150 gallons a day.
With conservation efforts stepped up amid the severe statewide drought, nows may be a good time to upgrade water fixtures in your home.
Experts say its a home improvement project won't send your personal finances down the drain.
Victor Kernes owns Water Fixers in Santa Maria.
He says technology has dramatically improved efficiencies in household water fixtures.
"Now there is more stringent requirements on water conservation, for example, we have water softeners now that have evolved into much more water and salt saving technologies employed into the computerization of the control valves", Kernes explains, "toilets now have now upgraded to dual flush available modes or they have 1.0, 1 gallon a minute flush toilets, you have aerators for kitchen sinks and bathroom faucets now that are down to half gallon a minute flow, aerators upgraded on shower valves."
Kernes says upgrading a typical home's fixtures is affordable and the savings can add up quickly.
"If we went through a normal three bedroom, two bath house and we replaced all those aerators and upgraded the flow control devices in the shower heads and changed the toilets over you could probably do that whole thing somewhere around 700 dollars including the cost of the material and the labor", Kernes says.
Kernes says public attitudes are changing about water conservation and technology is going with the flow.
"I think that the good news is the water conservation is going to finally get us into a newer, thinking mode of trying to really protect the water resources that we've kind of taken advantage of for several years", Kernes says, "I think it will force us to be more conservative and look for appliances and devices that can enhance the water savings, it is a concern that if you want to have water you have to conserve what you are using, recycle what you can and employ technologies that can save it."
Kernes says to check with your local water district to see if there are rebates or subsidies available for upgrading water fixtures in your home.