District News Articles

  2. Reprinted with permission from a January 29, 2009 Denver Water press release. For additional information about this release please contact Stacy Chesney at (303) 628-6584.
    There’s another “bowl” to check out this Sunday.
    Denver Water continues the tradition it started in 2005, urging customers to check their toilet bowls for leaks on Super Bowl Sunday. Turn those Super Bowl bathroom visits into a profitable situation with Denver Water’s special incentive that makes that “up close and personal” encounter with the porcelain throne a more attractive prospect: cash money.
    The utility’s year-round rebate program encourages homeowners to replace old, water-guzzling toilets with more efficient low-flow models that use 1.6 gallons or less per flush. Rebates of $25 are being offered on certain models of low-flow toilets; high-efficiency models are eligible for $125 rebates because they use 20 percent less water than low-flow models.
    In 2008, the utility handed out more than 14,000 rebates, amounting to $1.8 million. Rebates for high-efficiency toilets were up 380 percent over last year. In addition to money saved to buy those efficient toilets, washers and other appliances, customers will save money on their water bills. Depending on the device, customers will see an 18 to 22 percent drop in indoor water use.
    Inspecting your toilet is smart, says Denver Water Conservation Manager Melissa Elliott. “Super Bowl commercials are such a draw that halftime may mean a line for a quick visit to the bathroom. Better to spend some quality time with your toilet before the big game. Check for leaks — and if you have a toilet that guzzles more than 1.6 gallons per flush, plan to replace it through Denver Water's rebate program.”
    The rebate program is part of Denver Water’s conservation plan, which asks all of Denver’s water users to eliminate water waste and share the responsibility of water conservation. Such efforts will help extend supplies into the future, reduce the need for costly projects like new dams and storage projects, and support agriculture, the environment and water-based recreation by keeping more water in streams and rivers.
    Toilets are a home’s biggest water-using device, accounting for nearly 30 percent of total indoor usage. Prior to 1994, toilets used anywhere from 3.5 to 7 gallons per flush. Since 1994, federal law has required all newly manufactured toilets use 1.6 gallons or less per flush.
    To determine how many gallons a toilet uses per flush, check the porcelain between the seat and the tank. Most toilets using 1.6 gallons per flush are stamped as such. If the toilet isn’t stamped and it was installed before 1994, it likely uses more.
    Those who aren’t considering replacing their toilets still should check them for leaks. Leaking toilets account for more than half of the complaints Denver Water receives each year about high water bills. What may seem to be a tiny leak can actually waste 100–250 gallons of water a day, making a big difference in the amount of a water bill. An easy way to check for toilet leaks is to add a few drops of food coloring to the water tank. Don’t flush for thirty minutes; then check the water in the bowl. If it’s colored, there’s a leak.
    The rebate program has strict eligibility requirements. Customers are urged to check details before making purchases. In addition to toilets, certain models of high-efficiency clothes washers are eligible for a $150 rebate. A qualifying evapotranspiration (ET) controller for sprinkler systems can net a buyer $150 in return. Rain sensors for automatic sprinkler systems earn customers $25 back; wireless models earn $50. Items must be purchased between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2009, and recipients must be residential Denver Water customers. (A variety of other conservation incentive programs are available to commercial and industrial customers.) Visit, or call Denver Water’s Conservation Hotline at (303) 628-6343 to request application materials, lists of eligible products and more information.
    Please note that Platte Canyon Water and Sanitation District customers are eligible for the rebates offered from Denver Water since they are billed directly by Denver Water for water service.