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Audit never brings to mind educational, enjoyable times – and free shower heads – until I had one conducted by the county’s Water & Energy Conservation Officer Matt Dickens of the Department of Public Utilities.
More pleasant anomalies come to mind as these audits are done at the customer’s request, are scheduled for the customer’s convenience, take only an hour, are free and serve to save the customer money while reducing energy and water. I volunteered for Matt’s audit out of curiosity. Matt arrived promptly for the appointment, carrying a plumber’s tote in one hand and charts in the other.
First he reviewed the charts, which summarized my household usage of water, gas and electric from 2005 to 2008. Among them were bar charts that spanned January to December and grouped by each month the usage by year. Water use by these charts, Matt said, appears for most as an arch centered about summertime irrigation. The arch’s base in in winter months indicates indoor use; its height from the base outside use.
Matt can compare outdoor usage against known averages for watering your particular landscapes or gardens. A substantial excess from the average indicates either overkill watering or a horribly leaky irrigation system, either habits or plumbing in need of repair.
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