How can I prevent runoff?

More than incidental water runoff is prohibited during outdoor watering. It carries pollutants to the ocean, wastes water and is a sign that too much water is being applied to the area. If you are experiencing runoff, reduce the amount of time that you are watering. If the area needs more water, try watering for a short amount of time before 9 a.m. and again after 6 p.m.. Just make sure that your total watering duration per station per day is not more than 15 minutes. You will probably find that you need less than 15 minutes per station per day. 

Overspray is different than runoff. Overspray is when sprinklers reach beyond the area being watered and spray hard surfaces, such as streets, sidewalks and driveways. This can be controlled by turning down sprinklers and/or adjusting the sprinkler heads to better direct the water. If you would like to replace your old sprinkler heads with more water efficient rotating sprinkler nozzles, rebates may be available at

Show All Answers

1. What are the City's water restrictions, and how do they apply to me?
2. When did the restrictions go into effect?
3. How is the 11-20% reduction in water usage measured?
4. What are the specific watering requirements for outdoor landscaping?
5. How can I monitor my water usage?
6. How will the water restrictions be enforced?
7. Do the water restrictions apply to the use of recycled water for irrigation purposes?
8. What is non-functional turf?
9. What are commercial, industrial and institutional sites?
10. What is potable water?
11. How is Fountain Valley doing its part?
12. How are the time frames for each day determined?
13. Can I hand water between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.?
14. What does no more than 15 minutes per station per day mean?
15. What if 15 minutes per station per day is too much?
16. If 3 days per week at 15 minutes per station = 45 minutes, can I spread my 45 minutes over more days in smaller increments?
17. How can I prevent runoff?
18. What resources are available to help me reduce my water use?
19. Watering of ornamental turf on public street medians is prohibited. What is a public street median?
20. Do drip irrigation systems have the same restrictions?
21. How are soaker hoses treated?
22. Can I use water that I capture in a bucket in the shower while the water is warming up or water I used for cooking vegetables to water my plants?
23. Is the City encouraging gray water systems?
24. Why are they watering during the day at Mile Square Park?
25. How do I report water waste?