Port Water District offers rebates to save water

Port Water District offers rebates to save water
Port Washington resident, Mitchell Rosen (center), receives a rebate check from PWWD Commissioners (L-R Mindy Germain, Peter Meyer, David Brackett) for the installation of a water saving, smart irrigation controller at his home. (Courtesy of PWWD)

The Port Washington Water District (PWWD) has relaunched its rebate program incentivizing customers to install a smart irrigation controller at their homes. As part of its “Be Smart and Green, Save 15” water conservation campaign, the District is once again offering rebates of $150 to qualifying applicants who swap out their standard irrigation timer with a water-saving, smart irrigation controller.

“The success of last year’s program was all the evidence the Board of Commissioners needed to continue offering the rebates for another year,” said David Brackett, chairman of the PWWD Board of Commissioners. “We are proud that we live in an environmentally responsible community that takes water conservation very seriously. For every smart controller installed, thousands of gallons of water are saved and our community’s water supply remains that much more protected from the irreversible effects of saltwater contamination.”

The rebates for this water-saving technology are one of the many steps the District is taking to reduce water consumption by 15 percent and protect Long Island’s sole-source aquifer from the dangers of saltwater contamination.

 The District has appropriated $5,250 to fund 35 rebates for qualified residential users who replace their existing irrigation timer with a smart irrigation controller. Smart irrigation controllers are an effective tool for reducing landscape water use; they are designed specifically to optimize water usage, prevent over-watering, and keep lawns and gardens green and healthy.

Smart irrigation controllers can use information such as local weather conditions, plant type, and soil moisture levels to determine accurate landscaping water needs. They can also automatically adjust watering schedules based on these criteria, allowing lawn and gardens to thrive under optimal watering conditions without the homeowner having to manually adjust the controller.

 “Relaunching this rebate program was a priority for us because of the significant impact it will have on our water-saving efforts and protecting our sole-source aquifer,” said PWWD Commissioner Mindy Germain. “The 21 controllers installed by our residents last year will save enough water to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool. That’s exciting to us, especially when you consider the water savings possible if every home with an irrigation system installed this technology.”

The PWWD has saved more than 100,000 gallons of water since installing a smart irrigation controller at the District’s headquarters in 2015. Typically, the use of a smart irrigation controller allows the average residential user to see a reduction in water use by approximately 30 percent. This amount of savings equates to an estimated $100 savings in customers’ water bills over the course of the irrigation season. 

“A quality residential smart irrigation controller costs around $250,” said PWWD Commissioner Peter Meyer. “With a $150 rebate from the District and an estimated $100 in savings on your water bill from reduced usage, the system will likely have itself paid for within the first year. Take advantage of this program while it lasts to not only save yourself some money but contribute to our community’s efforts to protect our only water source.”

In order to qualify for the rebate program, the applicant must be a PWWD customer and the property owner of the installation site with a fully functioning irrigation system compatible with an EPA water sense labeled smart irrigation controller. The system must also be installed and programmed per the manufacturer’s directions as well as contain a rain sensor—unless the controller model installed includes an onsite weather component.

Rebates will be issued to qualified applicants on a first-come, first-served basis and offered while funding is available. Other terms and conditions apply. For more information about how to apply for the smart irrigation system controller rebate program, please contact the PWWD at 516-767-0171 or visit www.pwwd.org.

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