Do Your Part and conserve water outdoors. If you maintain your yard with an irrigation system, then almost half of the water used in your home every year is used outdoors. First, get a rain gauge. An established lawn only needs around an inch of water a week and that includes rain. Any small container can help you monitor the rain that falls and then only water if you need to. If you need to run your irrigation system, then do it just once or twice a week. Set your system for one long nighttime watering. The wind is lighter and the evaporation rate is lower at night and there's less demand on the system so the water pressure is higher. Plus a long slow watering encourages deep roots and that makes your plants more drought resistant when we inevitably get that dry spell over the summer. If you do it just once or twice a week you won't get brown patch or any other fungus in the yard. Lastly watch the weather forecast. If it looks like rain then turn your system off. Too much water on your lawn encourages brown patch and the excess water that runs off your yard carries lawn chemicals, clippings and sediment into the nearest storm drain, polluting our drinking water supply. An irrigation system can definitely help protect your investment in landscaping, but if you don't use it wisely then you're wasting water and money. Tread lightly on our planet by using your sprinklers at the proper time and only when needed.