Here’s How Recycling Your Shower and Sink Water Can Help You Save During LA’s Water Restrictions – NBC Los Angeles

With LA’s two-day lawn watering rule about to go into effect, many homeowners are panicking.

A “gray water” option might help.

When Julie Feiner and David Richard Lewis moved into their North Hills home a few years ago, one thing kept running through their minds.

How much water would their new green lawn and trees need?

“I was scared to think about it,” Lewis said.

Was there a way to save the 50 gallons that went down the drain every day when they took a shower.

“It just makes sense to reuse that water,” Feiner said.

They hired Leigh Jerrard to put in a “grey water” system, which diverts water from the drain in their bathtub to a small pump outside.

The pump sends water to 16 “emitters” placed around the garden, soaking a layer of wood chips underground.

Gray water is gently used water, in the home – bathtubs, showers, bathroom sinks and laundry.

Leigh’s company, Greywater Corps, has been converting yards large and small for 12 years.

Now that water agencies are tightening the screws on watering lawns, he is in high demand.

He made sure to water this couple’s yard every time they shower, saving money and the environment.

And that includes thirstier plants, such as fruit trees. In one of his garden they have ten.

Soap material in drain water contains phosphorus and nitrogen, among other things, which actually fertilize trees when irrigated.

“Everything blooms,” Feiner said. “They love this gray water.”

Lewis added, “I even sold my lawnmower.”

Since the City of LA and other counties limit watering lawns to twice a week, can gray water support a lawn?

“Gray water isn’t really an option for lawns,” Jerrard said.

He advises people to take the discounts offered and replace the grass with plants.

It can be expensive at first.

But over time, you will earn back what you spent.

And in these climate-changing times, you may one day have no choice.

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