Lawns vs pools: What uses more water? - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Lawns vs pools: What uses more water?

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - As California enters its fourth summer of drought, the pool industry is digging up what they call a drought-friendly solution campaign, "Let's Pool Together."

Pool companies have been advertising they use less water than grass, but it all depends how much pool and how much grass to water.

"So basically, if you put in a swimming pool and a concrete deck, you use less water than the equivalent amount of lawn. Significantly," said Cecil Fraser, owner of Swan Pools.

Water conservation experts believe after the first two years, both lawns and pools use the same amount of water.

Pool Owner Theresa Aranda built her pool to save water. "We literally ripped out every square inch of yard," she said.

"We've had some neighbors make comments, but they still have a lot of grass. So, the grass is always greener," she added.

But there is a deeper problem. To meet state water mandates, reducing water use by 25-percent, some water districts across the state are banning pool construction putting limits on draining and refilling existing pools. In some instances, some spa owners are getting rid of their hot tubs.

In fact, one spa removal company said it did a record 145 removals last night month and said the drought is a factor.

"We're busier, more busy now than we've ever been. Everyone's getting rid of their spas," said Lando Fahrenbach, owner of Spa Removers.

As the record drought continues, water use has many state residents treading carefully.

Pool experts encourage pool owners to use a double cover to keep water from evaporating. Experts said it can cut evaporation rate in half.

The cost to remove a pool can be about six to eight thousand dollars.

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