- Town Departments
- Departments M - Q
- Public Works
- Water, Sewer & Drains Division
- Water Conservation Program
Water Conservation Program
The Town of Needham is pleased to offer residents an opportunity to purchase Rain Barrels (PDF) and Soil Moisture Sensors (PDF) at the Town's cost.
The Town is introducing this program to encourage residents to be more contentious on water conservation and also to help mitigate pollution in the water supplies and save money on rising water bills.
Water usage can increase as much as 60% during the extended summer season from outdoor watering needs such as watering gardens, lawns, and washing cars. Rain barrels offset that increase; saving homeowner's money and helping the community manage water supplies. Rain barrels also reduce runoff. In the Charles River Watershed, runoff can harm existing wetlands, ponds and the streams because stormwater systems discharge polluted runoff.
Homeowners can connect the barrels to their downspouts and save as much as 1,700 gallons in a season with a single barrel. The barrels are offered in three colors; Forest Green, Earth Brown or Nantucket Gray at the low cost of $55. Each barrel comes with a spigot, overflow valve, hose, and mosquito screen. Diverters to connect to your rainspouts as well as solar powered pumps for use with the barrels can be purchased through a separate supplier.
The program also promotes the use of Soil Moisture Sensors (SMS). The SMS is a sensor connected to an irrigation system controller that measures soil moisture content in the active root zone before each scheduled irrigation event and bypasses the cycle if soil moisture is above a user-defined set point. SMSs function similarly to rain sensors by bypassing irrigation events under rainy conditions, but by measuring soil moisture at the root zone they are more effective at minimizing irrigation when plants do not need additional water. The sensors are offered at the low cost of $150.
The Town also offers free water-efficiency kits for distribution to our residents. The kits include showerheads, aerators, toilet tank dams and leak-detecting dye tabs. The kits are available upstairs in the Public Service Administrative Building, outside of the admin area.
We have a limited number of Rain Barrels and Soil Moisture Sensors in inventory, so turn around time may take up to two weeks once an order has been placed. To take advantage of this offer please call the Department of Public Works (DPW) Administration Office (781) 455-7550, ext. 306