Water Conservation And The Backyard Pool By: Sarah Bernheim How would you feel if you wasted 7000 gallons of water? If you were concerned about water conservation, you’d probably feel pretty bad about it. And since you're reading this, you probably are. But according to the U.S. Department of Energy, that is an average amount of water lost by a backyard pool during the summer months by evaporation alone. Here are five simple water saving tips that you as a pool owner can use to save water and save energy in the bargain. 1) Save Water – Use a Solar Pool Cover The pool industry experts say that a normal evaporation rate for a backyard pool is about one half to one inch per day. In fact, more than half of the water in your pool could evaporate in one year without a pool cover. Using a solar cover can reduce the evaporation rate by almost 50% and has the extra benefit of trapping the sun’s warmth. A solar pool cover can raise the water temperature by about 10-15 degrees. 2) Keep It Clean - The Pool and Filters That Is Clean your pool regularly by using skimmers to save energy. By keeping your pool clean, the pump and filters won’t have to work as hard. Clean filters conserve water because they don’t have to be backwashed as often. 3) Lower The Pool’s Water Level Lowering the water level to about 1 inch above the bottom of the pool tile and keeping horseplay at a minimum will save water by keeping the water from sloshing over the sides of the pool. It will also lower the evaporation rate due to wind blowing across the surface of the water. 4) Check For Leaks To Keep From Wasting Water Having to add water on a daily basis or if the PH level in the pool water constantly needs adjusting, this may be a sign that your pool is leaking. Also, look for soggy soil down stream of your pool. If you have any of these problems, it may be time to hire a professional to confirm and/or stop the leak. 5) Use Wind Barriers To Save Water Surrounding the pool with drought resistant shrubs or a fence will reduce the loss of water evaporation by decreasing the amount of wind blowing across the surface of the water. Just remember to keep these barriers at a distance close enough to be effective yet not too close so as to cast a shadow over the pool. According to some estimates, there are at least 3 million in ground pools in California. How much water could we save by using these five simple steps? Think about it.