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Water conservation for pool and spa owners
Check your pool regularly for leaks to conserve water. - photo by Photo Contributed

Did you know that pools and surrounding decks use less than half the water than irrigated lawns? That doesn’t mean we can’t do more. Here are some tips to help you keep your pool water wise this summer:


·         Install a pool cover to reduce water evaporation by as much as 90 percent. 

·         Shut off waterfalls, fountains and other water features to reduce water loss and evaporation.

·          Check the pool for leaks.  Contact your pool service professional for guidance. 

·         Minimize splashing or lower the pool’s water level to reduce the amount of water splashed out.

·         Plug the overflow line when the pool is in use.

·         Replace sand and Diatomaceous Earth filters with cartridge filters that do not require backwashing.

·         Keep your pool clean to reduce frequency of backwashing.

·         If your pool is heated, reduce the water temperature to reduce evaporation.



·         Keep it covered. Maintain the chemicals to extend water life.

·         Check the equipment for leaks. Drain only when absolutely necessary.

·         Check with your pool service professional for new technology that helps keep the water clean and reduce the need to drain the spa.

·         If you drain your spa, reuse the water to irrigate plants and landscaping.



To test if your pool is leaking: 1. If your pool has an automatic fill valve, make sure it is fully turned off. 2. Place a bucket on a pool step. 3. Fill the bucket with pool water to about three to four inches from the top, matching the water level in the bucket with the level of the pool. 4. Mark the water levels on both the inside and outside of the bucket. 5. Wait 24 hours. 6. If the pool water has dropped faster than the bucket’s contents, you may have a leak. Contact a pool professional for help.

Perform this bucket test every three months and learn how to detect pool leaks. Leaks are most commonly found in the lining, pipes/pipe joints, pump, or plumbing. Wet or damp areas around the pool pump or filter may indicate a leak as well.


Auto fill systems use a float to maintain a consistent water level, similar to what you would find in a toilet tank. If the valve malfunctions, or the water level is higher than the overflow outlet, your leveler may be constantly adding water to the pool. 

 Here’s what to check:

·         Make sure the fill line is always in the on position. It can usually be found near a hose bib or in the equipment area.

·         Open the lid to the auto fill and observe the float is working properly. Lightly push it down to see if it adds water, or lift up to see that it stops adding water.

·         If your water level is too high, try to adjust the float downwards by either bending down the arm with the float on it, or unscrewing the locking ring/wing-nut and pushing the float up or down on the main tube.

The information provided in this edition of Conservation Corner was retrieved from by WaterSmart Software and, a partner of the Save Our Water State Campaign.

For questions or additional information, contact Municipal Services at 209-668-5590 or visit the City’s website at Brought to you by the City of Turlock Municipal Services Department.



The City’s website offers many user-friendly tools and valuable information to help customers with their own conservation efforts at home.  Visit to check out the following list of resources that are available today!