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New Water Use Efficiency Laws
Because of our state’s ongoing issues with drought conditions, conserving water is always important. New laws went into effect this year regarding installation of new toilets, urinals, showerheads, and interior faucets.
This law requires that as of January 1, 2014, 100% of toilets and urinals (other than blow-out urinals) sold or installed in California be high-efficiency:
– High-Efficiency Toilets (HET): maximum of 1.28 gallons per flush
– High-Efficiency Urinals (HEU): maximum of 0.5 gallons per flush
This law imposes a state-mandated local program, and violation of the State Housing Law is punishable as a misdemeanor. In addition, all commercial and residential renovations involving toilet and/or urinal replacement are subject to this law.
This law mandates all buildings in California come up to 1992 state plumbing fixture standards at some point in the next decade. This law establishes that residential and commercial property built before January 1, 1994 replace plumbing fixtures that are not water conserving, defined as “noncompliant plumbing fixtures” as follows:
– Any toilet manufactured to use more than 1.6 gallons of water per flush
– Any urinal manufactured to use more than 1 gallon of water per flush
– Any showerhead to have a flow capacity of more than 2.5 gallons of water per minute
– Any interior faucet that emits more than 2.2 gallons of water per minute
On or before January 1, 2019, all noncompliant plumbing fixtures in multi-family and commercial properties must be replaced by the property owner with water-conserving plumbing fixtures. For single-family residential property, the compliance date is January 1, 2017.
The law now also requires as of this year any alterations or improvements to residential or commercial property, that water-conserving plumbing fixtures replace all non-compliant fixtures as a condition for issuance of a certificate of final completion for occupancy or final permit approval by the local building department.
For more information on the new laws, visit the California Urban Water Conservation Council’s website at http://www.cuwcc.org/.